Unfinished Business: Cabato, Diaz Ready for Mar. 2 Rematch

The scene has played over in the heads of the two young men many times.

Referee Ibrahim Kamal raising the arms of both Michael Cabato and Jorge Diaz, signalling their majority draw to a chorus of jeers at the Pickering Casino Resort.

Rare in boxing is the opportunity to right a wrong; plans can change, promotional allegiances and a variety of stakeholders can intercede. Controversial split decisions and draws are often left to sit on a fighter’s record, a question mark that can spawn doubters and what-ifs.

On March 2nd, 2024, for the second time in 10 months, Cabato (4-0-1, 2 KO) and Diaz (4-1-1, 1 KO) will go to battle as another rarity in boxing: A pair of young prospects risking their winning records early in their respective careers.

Each will be looking to right a perceived wrong they suffered at the hands of the judges in April — and take the next step on their path to full-fledged prospect status.

Backed by a strong promotional team and training out of the state-of-the-art BUDO gym in Toronto, Cabato has been levelling up while waiting for another shot at Diaz.

“I’ve been thinking about this rematch since the second the decision was read last April,” said the 24 year old son of former IBO World Champion Amado Cabato. “I’m pushing myself harder, and putting more in my gas tank to make sure this fight doesn’t go to a decision.”



A world away, pounding out his road work on industry-polluted streets, Diaz is relishing his return to Canada — and not just for a payday that’s roughly the equivalent of an annual salary in his native Queretaro.

“In this camp, I’m preparing physically and psychologically — I know it’s going to be a big fight, a war, so every day I’m putting in work to get better,” said Diaz. “I want to thank United for the opportunity to return to Canada and fight on another world-class event.”

Where the unsigned Diaz has fought just once in the last 10 months — a second-round stoppage of journeyman Jorge de Lara in September — Cabato has banked nearly eight rounds over two fights in the same timeframe.

The Filipino-Canadian believes he is a different fighter than in their first meeting, and is eager to prove it.

“Diaz is going to see more pressure on March 2nd, and I’m hurting him to the body,” promised Cabato. “I’ve trained my ass off and I’m ready to set the record straight!”

Motivation is not in short supply in the Mexican’s corner, either.

“I’ve got my parents, my coach and my city behind me, motivating me daily to get better,” said Diaz. “We’re two great young fighters and boxers, and it will be a big fight — just like in April, fans will enjoy the show we put on!”

The two men hold a combined record of 8-1-2, and understand the risk they are each taking in accepting the rematch: A loss would cement Diaz as a B-side fighter in both Mexico and abroad, while a defeat for Cabato would erase a year of continuous work.

Cabato says he is a different fighter; Diaz is definitely not coming to lose.

Something has to give.

Michael ‘Machine Gun’ Cabato (4-0-1, 2 KO) faces Jorge ‘Chapu’ Diaz (4-1-1, 1 KO) in a six-round featherweight contest on March 2 at Casino Resort Toronto. Tickets are available on Ticketmaster.ca.