June 2013

When The Fix Was In and Iron Mike Was At Ringside

You may remember I suggested on Americarnage that the NBA had loaned three off-duty referees to judge the WBO welterweight title fight that ended in a split decision win for Timothy Bradley, Jr. over Manny Pacquiao that even Bradley couldn’t quite believe. Shortly after the show, I was struck by the way Grantland’s Rafe Bartolomew expressed his own disbelief–calling it ‘boxing’s worst robbery at a major fight’ since the Pernell Whittaker-Julio Cesar Chavez ‘draw’ in 1993. That unusual ‘majority draw’ (two judges called it even, the third gave the fight to Sweet Pea, who doesn’t then get a 1-0-2 split decision) was indeed unusual, but it wasn’t even the worse decision of Whittaker’s career.