Pacquiao Fan Dies of Disappointment Following Split Decision Bout
- Posted on Fri, June 29th, 2012 by Mike Sturman
- Boxing Tickets
In what Covers’ Associate Editor Ashton Grewal calls “one of the worst results in boxing’s long shady history,” the subjectiveness of the sport has caused a rift with fans on one side and the boxing establishment on the other.
In a recent controversial Pacquiao vs. Bradley fight, the fact that there were no knockouts sent judges Ross, Ford and Roth into a tizzy. The gamblers were reluctant to pay Bradley bettors.
The inconsistency between the expectations of such major media sources as the AP, ESPN and HBO for a Pac-Man win and the acutal final decision has the internet buzzing. Was corruption a factor in the decision to award Bradley the win? Experts are calling the judging “questionable, if not borderline incompetent,” reported Tim Dahlberg, AP Boxing Writer. According to the fight stats, Pacquiao should have won the fight. He connected over a third of his punches and landed 19 percent more power blows. Even Bradley felt that he had lost the bout. He told promoter Bob Arum “I tried hard but I couldn’t beat the guy.”
And in a bizarre turn of events, fan Bienvenido Perez died of a heart attack en route to the hospital after Pacquiao’s loss. Following the announcement, Perez appeared to be having trouble breathing. He had a history of heart problems.
Gaming sports book director Mike Colbert said “it was the worst decision I’ve seen in my lifetime.” Sports writers attending the fight were taken by surprise as well.
Pacquiao is a wealthy and renowned hero in the Philippines, where he is a sporting icon and as well as a political figure. Boxing has been good to the fighter, whose fame led to success as a congressman. As Filipino fans watched the fight in gymnasiums and parks, they booed and wept openly at the judges’ mixed vote, which broke Pac-Man’s seven-year winning streak.
In contrast, Pacquiao remained calm and collected. Dahlberg reported that he expressed concern for the well being of his fans and followers: "I hope you’re not dismayed or discouraged…in your heart you know I was winning the fight.” The boxer has won a number of bouts by close judging calls, so he definitely understands how objectivity can fall by the wayside. And he now has the incentive to become a champion in the upcoming rematch.
How can judging decisions be so subjective? In this particular fight there were several factors leading to the decision for a Bradley win. First of all, the fight was fast and ferocious, and it was difficult to see just who was landing decisive hits.
Bradley himself, almost forgotten in the melee of flying opinions fought in a gutsy, persistent and intelligent manner. He had the presence of mind to change to a more disciplined boxing style partway through the bout. He did all of this despite spraining his right ankle and tearing ligaments in his left.
The Pac-Man/Bradley rematch will occur on November 10. Pac-Man will have a chance to regain his welterweight title, and Bradley may be able to vindicate his much-debated win. And both fighters will be well paid for their efforts. It’s just a shame that Mr. Perez won’t be around to see it.