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AVILA On LARA-WILLIAMS DECISION: “The Judging Wasn't That Bad”

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27534_126045834074302_2164_nBad judging.

Everyone has an opinion on judging a fight.

One thing about prizefighting is that everyone has an opinion on what fighting style is the best and how to win a fight.

Of course the easiest and most defining method is the knockout.

Barring a knockout, to win by decision puts a fighter at risk because judges have their own opinion and preferable style of defining who won a fight.

After hearing about the alleged bad judging this past weekend in Atlantic City regarding the Paul Williams and Erislandy Lara fight, I took a look at the fight replay and was surprised.

The judging wasn’t that bad.

Sure I wasn’t there and it’s much more difficult to judge a fight unless you are actually there. Television doesn’t do a fight justice because you cannot hear the impact of the punches and the directors often cut away to get a different angle.

One thing I learned about watching fights on television is to turn off the sound.

Why?

Because often the commentators have their own agenda and lean toward a particular fighter’s punches. I’d rather see it for myself and judge than listen to a commentator’s version.

Williams and Lara looked to be a very close fight after 12 rounds.

What I saw was Lara holding throughout the fight and every time he held Williams would pop him with four to eight clean punches. All of those blows count. If one fighter holds another and is getting popped then he is losing the round. Each blow counts.

Yes, Lara landed pot shots throughout the fight but took a lot in return whenever he held Williams, which was just about every round. The referee should have made Lara stop holding and then we would have seen a clear cut picture of who won the fight.

Getting back to the judges. I don’t think their score cards were that bad. Sure the esteemed Harold Lederman had a much different score card, but that’s not unusual in the fight game.

One other factor that led fans to cry foul is the Compubox stats. They had Lara landing many more punches. Forget Compubox. It’s not a good measure because you have one guy pushing a button. He didn’t count any of the punches Williams was landing while being held. There was one round in particular where I was counting the number of blows Williams landed in the clinch. When the round ended Compubox had Lara out-landing Williams by four punches. They didn’t count any of the punches Williams connected while being held. Compubox is just an entertainment additive and not 100 percent accurate at any time.

New Jersey may have suspended the judges but I really didn’t see them doing anything out of the ordinary. They just preferred the volume of punches being landed by Williams in the clinch over the pot shots of Lara.

Watch the fight without the sound and judge for yourself.

Other boxing chatter

Las Vegas prizefighter Diego Magdaleno (19-0, 7 KOs) defends the NABF junior lightweight title against Alejandro Perez (15-2-1, 10 KOs) tonight at the Texas Station Casino in Las Vegas. The fight card is promoted by Top Rank and also features a battle between other undefeated junior lightweights Casey Ramos (13-0, 4 KOs) and Joselito Collado (12-0, 3 KOs).

Congratulations to Pico Rivera’s Rico Ramos (20-0, 11 KOs) who won the vacant WBA junior featherweight world title by knockout over Japan’s Akifumi Shimoda (23-3-1, 10 KOs) at 2:46 of round seven. Ramos occasionally trains in San Bernardino and has fought several times at Pechanga Casino.

Juan Manuel Marquez and his younger brother Rafael Marquez both fight on Saturday in Cancun, Mexico. The older Marquez (52-5-1, 38 KOs) fights Likar Ramos (24-3, 18 KOs) in a 10 round junior welterweight bout. Rafael Marquez (39-6, 35 KOs) collides with Eusebio Osejo (19-9-2, 7 KOs) in a 10 round featherweight contest. Also, WBA junior flyweight Roman Gonzalez (28-0, 23 KOs) fights Omar Salado (22-3-2, 13 KOs).

WBO flyweight world titleholder Julio Cesar Miranda (35-5-1, 28 KOs) defends against former junior flyweight world champion Brian “Hawaiian Punch” Viloria (28-3, 16 KOs) on Saturday July 16. The world title fight takes place in Honolulu, Hawaii. It’s Miranda’s fourth title defense.

IBO cruiserweight world titleholder Danny Green of Australia (31-3, 27 KOs) fights former light heavyweight champion Antonio Tarver (28-6, 19 KOs) on Wednesday July 20, in Sydney, Australia. Green knocked out Roy Jones Jr. and Paul Briggs and beat BJ Flores by decision.

Las Vegas contender Jessie Vargas (16-0, 9 KOs) blew out Walter Estrada (39-15-1, 25 KOs) at 38 seconds of round two. Vargas is now trained by Roberto Alcazar, who guided Oscar De La Hoya early in his pro career.

Arizona’s Jesus “El Martillo” Gonzalez (27-1, 14 KOs) won the NABF super middleweight title by decision over Francisco Sierra (24-4-1, 22 KOs) on Friday. The fight took place in Phoenix.

WBO cruiserweight world titleholder Marco Huck (32-1, 23 KOs) defends his title against Argentina’s Hugo Garay (34-5, 18 KOs) on Saturday July 16, in Munich, Germany. Huck is making his seventh world title defense.

In the United Kingdom undefeated John Murray (31-0, 18 KOs) collides with Kevin Mitchell (31-1, 23 KOs) in a lightweight battle for the vacant WBO intercontinental title on Saturday. The fight takes place in Liverpool, England. On the same card Scotland’s Ricky Burns (31-2, 8 KOs) defends his WBO junior lightweight world title against Nicky Cook (30-2, 16 KOs).

Undefeated George “Comanche Boy” Tahdooahnippah (27-0-1, 20 KOs) fights Jimmy Holmes (19-2-2, 10 KOs) in a 10 round middleweight fight on Saturday July 16. The match takes place in Lawton, Oklahoma.

WBA junior bantamweight world titleholder Hugo Cazares (35-6-2, 24 KOs) knocked out challenger Arturo Badillo (20-2, 18 KOs) at the end of round three to retain the world title. The clash took place in Mazatlan, Mexico.

IBF super middleweight titleholder Lucian Bute (29-0, 24 KOs) knocked out France’s Jean Paul Mendy (29-1-1, 16 KOs) at 2:48 of round four to retain the world title. Bute fought in from of his native fans in Romania.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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2015 Fight of the Year – Francisco Vargas vs Takashi Miura

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The WBC World Super Featherweight title bout between Francisco Vargas and Takashi Miura came on one of the biggest boxing stages of 2015, as the bout served as the HBO pay-per-view’s co-main event on November 21st, in support of Miguel Cotto vs Saul Alvarez.

Miura entered the fight with a (29-2-2) record and he was making the fifth defense of his world title, while Vargas entered the fight with an undefeated mark of (22-0-1) in what was his first world title fight. Both men had a reputation for all-out fighting, with Miura especially earning high praise for his title defense in Mexico where he defeated Sergio Thompson in a fiercely contested battle.

The fight started out hotly contested, and the intensity never let up. Vargas seemed to win the first two rounds, but by the fourth round, Miura seemed to pull ahead, scoring a knock-down and fighting with a lot of confidence. After brawling the first four rounds, Miura appeared to settle into a more technical approach. Rounds 5 and 6 saw the pendulum swing back towards Vargas, as he withstood Miura’s rush to open the fifth round and the sixth round saw both men exchanging hard punches.

The big swinging continued, and though Vargas likely edged Miura in rounds 5 and 6, Vargas’ face was cut in at least two spots and Miura started to assert himself again in rounds 7 and 8. Miura was beginning to grow in confidence while it appeared that Vargas was beginning to slow down, and Miura appeared to hurt Vargas at the end of the 8th round.

Vargas turned the tide again at the start of the ninth round, scoring a knock down with an uppercut and a straight right hand that took Miura’s legs and sent him to the canvas. Purely on instinct, Miura got back up and continued to fight, but Vargas was landing frequently and with force. Referee Tony Weeks stepped in to stop the fight at the halfway point of round 9 as Miura was sustaining a barrage of punches.

Miura still had a minute and a half to survive if he was going to get out of the round, and it was clear that he was not going to stop fighting.

A back and forth battle of wills between two world championship level fighters, Takashi Miura versus “El Bandido” Vargas wins the 2015 Fight of the Year.

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Jan 9 in Germany – Feigenbutz and De Carolis To Settle Score

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This coming Saturday, January 9th, the stage is set at the Baden Arena in Offenburg, Germany for a re-match between Vincent Feigenbutz and Giovanni De Carolis. The highly anticipated re-match is set to air on SAT.1 in Germany, and Feigenbutz will once again be defending his GBU and interim WBA World titles at Super Middleweight.

The first meeting between the two was less than three months ago, on October 17th and that meeting saw Feigenbutz controversially edge De Carolis on the judge’s cards by scores of (115-113, 114-113 and 115-113). De Carolis scored a flash knock down in the opening round, and he appeared to outbox Feigenbutz in the early going, but the 20 year old German champion came on in the later rounds.

The first bout is described as one of the most crowd-pleasing bouts of the year in Germany, and De Carolis and many observers felt that the Italian had done enough to win.

De Carolis told German language website RAN.DE that he was more prepared for the re-match, and that due to the arrogance Feigenbutz displayed in the aftermath of the first fight, he was confident that he had won over some of the audience. Though De Carolis fell short of predicting victory, he promised a re-vamped strategy tailored to what he has learned about Feigenbutz, whom he termed immature and inexperienced.

The stage is set for Feigenbutz vs De Carolis 2, this Saturday January 9th in Offenburg, Germany. If you can get to the live event do it, if not you have SAT.1 in Germany airing the fights, and The Boxing Channel right back here for full results.

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2015 Knock Out of the Year – Saul Alvarez KO’s James Kirkland

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On May 9th of 2015, Saul “Canelo” Alvarez delivered a resonant knock-out of James Kirkland on HBO that wins the 2015 KO of the Year.

The knock-out itself came in the third round, after slightly more than two minutes of action. The end came when Alvarez delivered a single, big right hand that caught Kirkland on the jaw and left him flat on his back after spinning to the canvas.Alvarez was clearly the big star heading into the fight. The fight was telecast by HBO for free just one week after the controversial and disappointing Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao fight, and Alvarez was under pressure to deliver the type of finish that people were going to talk about. Kirkland was happy to oblige Alvarez, taking it right to Alvarez from the start. Kirkland’s aggression saw him appear to land blows that troubled the young Mexican in the early going. Alvarez played good defense, and he floored Kirkland in the first round, displaying his power and his technique in knocking down an aggressive opponent.

However, Kirkland kept coming at Alvarez and the fight entered the third round with both men working hard and the feeling that the fight would not go the distance. Kirkland continued to move forward, keeping “Canelo” against the ropes and scoring points with a barrage of punches while looking for an opening.

At around the two minute mark, Alvarez landed an uppercut that sent Kirkland to the canvas again. Kirkland got up, but it was clear that he did not have his legs under him. Kirkland was going to try to survive the round, but Alvarez had an opportunity to close out the fight. The question was would he take it?

Alvarez closed in on Kirkland, putting his opponent’s back to the ropes. Kirkland was hurt, but he was still dangerous, pawing with punches and loading up for one big shot.

But it was the big shot “Canelo” threw that ended the night. Kirkland never saw it coming, as he was loading up with a huge right hand of his own. The right Alvarez threw cracked Kirkland in the jaw, and his eyes went blank. His big right hand whizzed harmlessly over the head of a ducking Alvarez, providing the momentum for the spin that left Kirkland prone on the canvas.

Saul “Canelo” Alvarez went on to defeat Miguel Cotto in his second fight of 2015 and he is clearly one of boxing’s biggest stars heading into 2016. On May 9th Alvarez added another reel to his highlight film when he knocked out James Kirkland with the 2015 “Knock Out of the Year”.

Photo by naoki fukuda

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