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The good and the REALLY bad
June 12, 2012 - Paul Edgar
The past weekend was like Christmas for a boxing enthusiast such as myself. And, when Monday morning rolled around, I found myself thrilled and bewildered all at the same time. I'll give the good news first. On Friday, Youngstown native Kelly "The Ghost" Pavlik improved his record to 39-2 with 34 knockouts with a dominating performance against the unheralded Scott Sigmon (22-4). In the main event of ESPN2's Friday Night Fights, Pavlik won every minute of every round before the doctor and referee decided Sigmon had enough and stopped the fight. Pavlik looked tremendous in the winning effort, using a variety of punches and moves to keep Sigmon on his heels. While Sigmon wasn't a top-flight opponent, he was tough and brave if nothing else. He withstood a barrage of Pavlik punches in each round, finishing the night a bloody mess. The win should move Pavlik back onto the big stage. He said in his post-fight interview that he wanted a major step up in competition for his next fight in the fall. Pavlik will likely reenter the ring sometime in September and, depending on what his promoter Top Rank has in mind, it could be a title shot.
Now the bad. If you paid for the Manny Pacquiao-Timothy Bradley pay-per-view on Saturday, you are probably still scratching your head. Pacquiao, generally considered the top pound-for-pound fighter in the world, clearly won the welterweight title fight, but was robbed by either corrupt or incompetent judges. Judge Jerry Roth scored the bout 115-113 for Pacquiao. Even that score is questionable as any way you look at it, Pacquiao won at least seven of the 12 rounds. In all actuality, he probably won 10 of the 12 rounds. The other two judges, C.J. Ross and Duane Ford, both scored the bout 115-113 in favor of Bradley. Ridiculous. It was clear to all ringside and those watching on TV that Pacquiao won the fight. Compubox numbers had Pacquiao landing 100 more punches than Bradley during the fight and landing more punches in 10 of the 12 rounds. It is yet another black eye for the sport which has already been marginalized over the past decade. Until boxing can rid itself of corruption and incompetency - both unacceptable - the sport will continue to sit on the sidelines far behind the major American sports. Until next time, I'm throwing in the towel.
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