The weekend in words: A winner, a loser, a judge in hot water and too many experts.
Teofimo Lopez was not meant to beat Vasyl Lomachenko. There, I said it.
It was meant to be so easy for Lomachenko – move for a few rounds, avoid Lopez’s power and then win comfortably on points. And then find a super fight or two to define a career.
However, it was Lopez who won comfortably. There will not, at the moment, be a rematch, and there is every chance that victory means that Lopez can put an end to his battle with the scales. He is a big unit, something that clearly bothered Lomachenko. Lopez can go move up a minimum of two weight classes.
It was a gripping fight to watch, far too technical to be a classic, but it was impossible to turn away.
It left behind a simple debate: Was Lopez brilliant or was Lomachenko awful? The answer is somewhere in the middle and that is the way the business works. Nobody ever wins a fight when they are awful against somebody who is brilliant on the night. Simple lesson for all professionals – don’t risk being awful!
Meanwhile, experienced British judge and referee, Terry O’Connor, stands accused of taking his eyes off the fight he was judging and looking away during a live broadcast on Saturday night. Big Terry will be asked some hard questions by the Board – calls for his imprisonment and banishment are well over the top!
Judges like Big Terry get scores wrong sometimes and then get them right in fifty other fights – guess when he gets stick? Yep, you guessed it. Who ever praises a judge for scoring a fight perfectly?
The same old boring chants of “boxing is fixed” surfaced after the clip of O’Connor looking away hit Twitter. Well, here’s an inconvenient little truth for you: Nobody has been convicted and sent to prison for fixing a fight for nearly sixty years! It’s human error, we can improve it, but don’t imagine brown envelopes are being handed out at shows.
Perhaps the Albanian fighting Florian Marku has the perfect solution: “My fists are my judges – that’s all I need.” Marku will need them next when he fights – one of seven fights on the night – on the next Boxxer show on Nov 10th.