By Kirk Jackson
I have to say that was crazy, action packed night, with a great fight card and pay-per-view event that was memorable to say the least. With of course, the so called “controversial” ending to cap off the evening.
There was a lively crowd in attendance, with electricity mounting as the tension in the MGM Grand building in Las Vegas, Nevada, was intensifying second by second, with anticipation for the potential fireworks to take place in the main event.
Amidst all the controversy that occurred later in the evening, the entire fight card was actually an entertaining one.
Jesse Vargas fought a competitive sea-saw match against Josesito Lopez.
Mexican legend Erik Morales fought a blood and guts war against the tough but relatively unknown Pablo Cesar Cano for some form of a WBC Light Welterweight Championship belt.
While at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, California, rising Mexican star Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez fought a competitive match against a game Alfonso Gomez. A fight that actually had a controversial quick stoppage in itself.
Now to the juicy stuff.
Every pugilist participating in the event is good fighter in their own right, but the entire boxing world was curious to see the return of perennial top p4p performer Floyd Mayweather, and how he would fair against the younger, stronger, exciting young champion Victor Ortiz.
Ortiz went up against Mayweather who was returning to the ring after a 16 month layoff. A great fight was expected, and through four rounds, an exciting one sided fight was taking place.
Seeming to not have any fear at all leading into the event, Ortiz looked the part at least from a physical standpoint, possessing a solid muscular frame, looking like a well polished army tank and even sported a 14 pound weight advantage.
But his eyes and body language throughout the fight told a different story.
From the moment you heard Michael Buffer’s magical voice introduce the fighters, the look in Ortiz’s eyes indicated to me all of the pressure, the gigantic magnitude of this event, the big moment was getting to him.
From the opening bell, Ortiz was feasting on straight right hand leads, check left hooks, jabs, and right handed body punches all night.
Unable to quite figure out the puzzle that is the Mayweather defense, Ortiz would land an occasional body punch, or a glancing blow up top on a few occasions, but most of his punches were blocked or dodged altogether.
Many of his rampant attacks against the ropes were nullified and ineffective. The most effective blows from Ortiz were his rabbit punches to the back of the head which are illegal, and the head butts he intentionally threw and I counted at least three head butts.
As the rounds went on, Mayweather’s dominance became more apparent and Ortiz’s confidence seemed to dwindle.
It was obvious to any unbiased spectator the difference in class between the two fighters, and if they kept the current the pace, Ortiz was going to wilt under the pressure of Mayweather’s pin point accuracy and power punches.
And with that in mind, some people believe Ortiz looked for a way out.
Ortiz pressed on, trying to impose his size and pushed Mayweather into the ropes towards the end of the 4th round, throwing a flurry of punches that mainly missed the intended target.
Perhaps out of frustration, Ortiz did his best impersonation of a billy goat and head butted Mayweather. He even threw a few punches after the intentional foul.
Referee Joe Cortez called for time to deduct a point from Ortiz.
After Ortiz apologized to Mayweather two or three times, including a hug and kiss on the cheek, referee Joe Cortez said “lets go,” to both fighters.
Bam it happened.
Ortiz offered one more ceremonial touching of the gloves while Cortez looked at ringside officials to check the time, and Mayweather landed a quick left hook, right cross combination that sent Ortiz to the canvas.
And that was it, show was over.
Some people call it dirty, I say it’s an eye for an eye.
Ortiz took it there initially and had been doing so with his tactics all night. And you can’t fault that, if you’re going to fight the best, do what you can to win and do your best.
But if you’re going to get rough, expect it in return. Do not blatantly foul someone and then hug them and expect everything is going to forgotten.
Ortiz forgot the cardinal rule in boxing, protect yourself at all times.
Let’s not forget Ortiz was losing badly as well. Perhaps an argument can be made giving him round two, but even that’s generous and the dominance from Mayweather was apparent.
According to Compubox, Mayweather landed 73 out of 208 punches for 35%, while Ortiz 26 out of 148 punches for 18%.
Call Floyd a jerk, an ass, whatever. I am not going to defend his personal life, or what he does outside the ring, that’s for whoever to judge.
But at the end of the day like him or not, you have to respect his skill and accomplishments in the ring, and he is unfairly criticized by many members of the media.
Especially by so called journalists, trainers and analysts working for HBO.
Their lack of professionalism is disturbing, and they should seriously consider hiring a new commentary team.
Individually and collectively as a group you guys are unprofessional. You guys are biased against certain fighters, not just Floyd, and you let your personal feelings get in the way of calling a fight. Call the fight for what it is.
It’s obvious every member on the team dislikes Mayweather, which is not a problem, but it shouldn’t translate over to your professional life.
Jim Lampley arguably is the worse play by play commentator of all time. His inaccuracies are astounding, sometimes I wonder which fight he is watching. Every fight he does folly after folly saying a punch lands when it doesn’t. The only thing saving him is his charismatic voice.
Emmanuel Steward always flips flops and continually harps on Mayweather not constantly throwing combinations, but fails to mention the other positive things Mayweather does do. Not every boxer fights the same, there are different styles and when Mayweather actually did throw some combinations, Steward didn’t even say anything. He talks like he is upset he never had a chance to train him or something.
Larry Merchant, a guy who has contributed immensely to the craft and professions of journalism and television broadcasting should know better by now what is he 83? As the elder statesmen, you should be leading by example and act more professional.
Instead you act just as immature as the fighters you criticize. I’m sure your journalistic contemporary, Rush Limbaugh would be proud.
Especially since you have a history of going at it with black fighters in particular such as Roy Jones, Mike Tyson, Bernard Hopkins, Winky Wright, Marvin Hagler, George Foreman, the aforementioned Mayweather and I am sure the list goes on and on.
The commentary from Merchant was terrible and the post fight interview was humoring. At the end of the day, if you act as immature as the people you criticize then you get what you deserve in the end.
Overall from a boxing purist stand point, the event was a success. Most of the fights were competitive, there was action in every fight, there was just an unfortunate ending, brought on mostly by Ortiz himself.
It will be interesting to see what happens from here on out in the boxing world, but I’m sure all eyes will be watching.