Decision against Manny Pacquiao is baffling | Boxing analysis
Manny Pacquiao's loss to Tim Bradley on Saturday in Las Vegas baffled many boxing followers.
The Associated Press
LAS VEGAS — The outcry in this gambling city was so loud Floyd Mayweather Jr. could have heard it in his jail cell. On the other side of the world, people cried in the streets in Manila, Philippines.
Through it all, boxer Manny Pacquiao was a model of serenity.
"I hope you're not dismayed or discouraged," he said. "I can fight. I can still fight."
That much was evident Saturday night in a fight Pacquiao seemed to have under control until the time the judges' scorecards were announced. He pounded Tim Bradley of Palm Springs, Calif., early, landed more punches — 253 to 159, according to Compubox statistics — and looked a lot like the fighter who catapulted to fame on a remarkable undefeated streak that lasted seven years.
Pacquiao is a former champion because of some judging that was questionable, if not borderline incompetent. But boxing has always been a subjective sport, and anything shy of a knockout is open to interpretation by the three judges who sit ringside.
When the split decision was announced and judges Duane Ford and C.J. Ross had Bradley winning 115-113, the pro-Pacquiao crowd at MGM Grand Garden Arena booed loudly and promoter Bob Arum nearly went apoplectic.
"This isn't about a close decision," said Arum, seemingly forgetting for a moment he promotes both fighters. "This is absurd and ridiculous and everyone involved in boxing should be ashamed."
It didn't take long for radio talk shows and people online to take up the theme. As usual, they said they would never watch another fight and, as usual, claimed the bout had to be fixed.
It wasn't, of course. If the judges got it wrong, it was because they liked what they saw when 5-1 underdog Bradley switched styles midway through the fight and started boxing Pacquiao instead of brawling with him.
Bradley's manager, Cameron Dunkin, said Sunday the fighter tore ligaments in his left foot and sprained his right ankle in the bout. "It's incredible that he fought through it," Dunkin said.
If there is sufficient public demand, there might be a rematch in November.