For years, politics have snuck their way into places they don’t belong.
But the one place I simply cannot tolerate to see them, is in the sports arenas around the world…causing shocking and grossly improper upsets, swayed voting and monetary-influenced decisions. In my opinion, the recent fight between Manny Pacquiao and Tim Bradley was no exception.
Like most of Las Vegas and pretty much anyone born with two eyes and the gift of sight, I am still baffled by the end decision of the fight. I’m also exceptionally disappointed that politics have stamped an irreversible and tainted mark on the sport of boxing, the last thing it needs. Especially in a time when other issues like cheating and personal decisions are casting shadows over the once dominant sport.
Like that idiot Lamont Peterson testing positive for a banned substance and hindering his bout with Amir Khan. This not only revealed Peterson’s ignorance, but left Khan, a fighter who takes tremendous pride in his natural talent and training regimen, to miss out on an opportunity to compete. And of course Floyd Mayweather’s current incarceration for domestic battery isn’t helping the imagine of the sport either. Fans may have had to deal with the poor judgement of athletes like Peterson and Mayweather before, but now we have to sit and wonder about the intentions of the judges as well? Absurd.
It doesn’t take a genius to see that underlying motives turned the judges into three blind mice at some point while determining their final decisions. Maybe it was because of the fine print of the contracts or the greediness of the promoters. Either way, the horrific judging will sadly contribute to the ever-growing lack of faith instilled in both sports fans and those within the industry.
Ringside punching stats showed Pacquiao landing 253 punches to 159 for Bradley. I’m no math genius, but those stats aren’t even close and should not have been open to any sort of speculation. The Compubox stats showed Pacquiao landing more punches in 10 of the 12 rounds. Again, am I missing something here? The Associated Press had Pacquiao winning 117-111.
This whole ordeal has made me feel like I’m the one who has been sucker punched…as an avid sports fan and a sports writer. Make that double punched. I’m not only upset to see Pacquiao, who has claimed world titles in an unprecedented eight weight divisions, end a run of 15 consecutive wins…but am deeply perterbed by the corruption that still exists in sports like boxing, where these athlests work tremendously hard toward their goals, only to be unfairly judged.
I miss the old days of boxing. Or maybe I miss the days when I was simply too naive to realize the reality of what actually goes on behind the scenes. My only hope is that boxing is able to recover from this latest knockout and restore faith in both its fans and athletes alike.