Following the monumental screwjob in Saturday night’s Manny Pacquiao vs. Timothy Bradley welterweight title match — a fight that veteran HBO boxing commentator Jim Lampley called the single worst decision he’s ever seen — promoter Bob Arum declared that would be no rematch between the two fighters unless Nevada’s attorney general Catherine Cortez Masto launched an investigation into a possible conspiracy. As he told Yahoo!’s Kevin Iole:
“I want to investigate whether there was any undue influence, whether the [Nevada Athletic Commission] gave any particular instruction and how they came to this conclusion…the whole sport is in an uproar. People are going crazy. If this was a subjective view that each of [the judges] honestly held, OK. I would still disagree, but then we’re off the hook in terms of there being no conspiracy. But there needs to be an independent investigation because it strains credulity that an event everybody saw as so one-sided one way all three judges saw it as close. It strains credulity.”
If I was Manny Pacquiao, I’d have no problem refusing the rematch in the first place. He beat Bradley, everybody saw him beat Bradley, and he gains nothing from pursuing a rematch outside of fulfilling a “revenge” storyline made possible by [ALLEGEDLY] corrupt judges. And speaking of [ALLEGEDLY] corrupt judges, here’s judge Duane Ford trying to justify his 115-113 tally of the fight in the challenger’s favor:
“If this were ‘American Idol’, without a doubt, Manny Pacquiao would have won. But it was not. I gave an honest opinion. I had Pacquiao up 4-2, I think, at the end of six rounds. I thought he hurt Bradley a couple of times early in the fight. But when the bell rang to end that round, it was over and what happens in one round doesn’t carry over to the next round. They’re separate units.
“In the second half of the fight, Pacquiao picked off a lot of punches to the head, but Bradley landed some hard body shots. That hurt Pacquiao. I don’t mean it hurt him in the sense of it physically hurting him, but in terms of scoring and piling up points. Bradley did an excellent job standing his ground as a boxer. Remember, it’s a boxing match and Bradley demonstrated his ability to box expertly…
“In pro boxing, you look for damage, and if the punches are equal and the damage is equal, you are looking for effective aggression, and that does not necessarily mean the guy going forward. Effective aggression can be a guy going back. And then you look at ring generalship, and that’s all about control.”
Effective aggression can be a guy going back? Ladies and gentlemen, the Cecil Peoples of boxing.
Even though Timothy Bradley reportedly told Bob Arum that he felt he’d lost the fight before the scores were announced, he went into spin mode on Sunday, telling RingTV:
I won the fight, without a doubt. You could say I won the first round, give or take the second. Lost the third, lost the fourth, lost the fifth, maybe even lost the sixth, you know, give or take. But from seven, eight, nine, 10, 11 and 12, I clearly dominated those rounds, man. I dominated those rounds. I know that I won those rounds.
I mean, this guy was supposed to stop me. He was supposed to knock me out. But I took his best punches, and I fought back hard. You know what I mean?
My corner and I honestly feel that I won the fight. Fair and square. It was not controversial decision or nothing like that. It is what it is, man. The judges got it right, that’s what I feel. There were some close rounds in there that they probably gave to me, because, like I said, I fought every minute of every damn round.
They were probably like, “this dude is only fighting in the first half of the round or the last 30 seconds of a rounds.” They probably caught on to that.
Garbage-ass decision aside, did any of you gain respect for Bradley for at least hanging in with Pac-Man for 12 rounds?