The talk in boxing circles of Dat Nguyen making a comeback continues to gain momentum. The Vietnam born dynamo has not fought since February 2017, where he brutally knocked out unbeaten world title prospect Miguel Flores. But instead of securing a world title shot of his own, Dat Nguyen was dispatched to boxing’s vast wilderness.
The legend surrounding Vietnam’s Dat Nguyen has continued to grow in the time since, and many stories have surfaced that indicate what an incredible athlete this man actually is – so improbable has been his journey!. The following is one of many stories that have forged the mystical aura that surrounds the Vietnam star to this day. You will surely love it!
It is July 2014. The phone hasn’t rung in over a year, and it appears that Dat Nguyen’s career is already over. The facts are that in the previous 5 years, the Vietnam power puncher has managed to contest only two fights. He dreams of returning to the ring, but it seems that nobody is interested to promote a dormant yet dangerous Vietnamese boxer. To stay fit, Dat hits bag, but living in Vero Beach Florida, he is far from the traditional boxing areas, so gets no pad work or sparring. One day he finally gets offered some sparring, but it is 30 miles away. Dat eagerly accepts – any ring action is better than none!. He turns up alone, and when he arrives, he asks “Who am I sparring?”. A man points in the direction of a young Cuban boxer and says, “That guy”
The young Cuban was two time Olympic gold medallist, and at the time, commonly rated as the pound for pound best boxer on the planet – Guillermo Rigondeaux!.
Dat Nguyen recalls the occasion. “It was an interesting experience. He was so fast and skilled, it was amazing. But it felt strange too. The first two rounds he gave me a lot of trouble, but by round three, I was starting to understand him and time him. I was actually thinking, wow, if i can train with this guy for a few weeks, and get my fitness and timing right, I don’t think he can hold me off!”
So here is the thing. Just how good is Dat Nguyen? After this spar, where he takes on possibly the world’s best at the height of his powers, Dat is not offered a fight for another two years. Between 2009 and 2016, the freakish Vietnamese talent operates with no promoter or trainer, and hits bag to stay fit. He has only three professional fights in 7 years!
Dat Nguyen is now aged 37, and has not boxed professionally for three years. He still yearns for a world title, and believes he still has what it takes to beat the best out there. Can that be possible? Based on Dat Nguyen’s amazing journey so far, it is very hard not to believe that anything is possible for this Vietnam legend.
*story sourced from Victory 8 Boxing
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