Imagine this scenario for a moment:
It's the NBA Finals. Game 7. Heat vs. Thunder. It's the 4th quarter, 10 seconds left on the clock, the NBA championship on the line...
Lebron James has the ball as the seconds tick away. Durant guards his every move. Dribble, dribble, dribble...Lebron drives in to the free throw line, takes a step back, pump fakes, Durant goes flying by, Lebron raises up, and...
Knocks down the jumper! Game over!
The teams retreat to their benches, and then wait as...
The scoreboard is revealed. For the first time all game they see, as does the crowd, Thunder 108, Heat 87.
That jumper meant nothing, but no one knew it because no one knew the score. It was hidden all game, from everyone.
I think we can all see how moronic this is. How silly.
And this, my friends, is boxing.
Boxing doesn't have a scoreboard. It has judges. Judges who keep score of every round, and don't show their scores to anyone until the fight is over and a winner is announced.
As we saw last week, this is pure madness.
Manny Pacquaio easily defeated Timothy Bradley. It was clear to just about everyone, especially the fighters themselves. They knew who was winning.
Unfortunately, they were wrong. The judges - who are idiots - had it differently. And even more unfortunately, Manny Pacquiao didn't know that. So he just kept cruising along, thinking he had an easy win, and didn't press the action. Didn't change his strategy. He didn't know he needed to.
Just like Lebron James taking down the clock and hitting that jumper that meant nothing, Manny Pacquiao dribbled out the clock and lost. All because he didn't know the score.
Insane! But here's where things get confusing:
Boxing has tried announcing the scores before, and every boxing "expert" hates it!
It makes zero sense to me. Shouldn't the competitors know what the score is? Why wouldn't you want that?
I think their theory is this: we don't want the fighters to know what the scores are or else they won't go for knockouts.
Well, that is horse shit.
First of all, it sure seems like a majority of boxing matches go to decision anyway. Second, boxing isn't all that popular anymore, only diehard fans are watching it, and they're not going to stop watching fights because guys are boxing. Third, there aren't that many boxers "going for knockouts", and the ones that are, that's the only way they know how to fight. They're not going to change their style because they know the score. Fourth, bad decisions are what is ruining boxing, not a lack of knockouts. Fifth, if you think it "takes away the drama", then you obviously hate every other sport. Sometimes, there are blowouts. If you're against open scoring, then you're against sports. And sixth, if a guy finds out he's losing by a lot, HE'S GOING TO GO FOR A KNOCKOUT. Even better, when he goes for that knockout, HE'S GOING TO GET KNOCKED OUT!!!
The fact is, you're never going to fix the judges. It's impossible. Why? Well, of the 41 reporters at ringside for the Pacquiao/Bradley fight, 38 had it for Pac, 3 had it for Bradley. Even though that is overwhelming, you still had 3 of them for Bradley, and anyone of them could've been judges. You can't remove the idiot factor.
What you could at least do is allow everyone to be aware of the situation - the boxers, the audience, the announcers - so we know what's going on during the fight. More importantly, so the boxers can adjust their approach.
The shame isn't just that Manny Pacquiao was robbed of a win, it's also that he wasn't given the chance to do anything about it while it was happening.
You're welcome for saving yet another sport. Goodnight and good luck.