Just what did happen on ShoBox Friday night?

By Paul Strauss: Officially, the answer is simple. Undefeated Sharif "The Lion" Bogere 21-0, 13 KO's scored a third round knockout of Francisco Contreras 16-1, 13 KO's in the main event of ShoBox's The New Generation at the Texas Station Casino, Las Vegas, NV. The Nevada Athletic Commission explained that although one of the final two right hands thrown by Bogere landed to the back of Contreras' head, the punch was still considered a legal blow because Contreras had turned away. Simple, right?

Then why couldn't the three announcers agree about what they saw first hand, even after viewing a replay of it several times? It proves one thing. Obviously human beings see things differently, even those people conditioned and experienced to be professional observers. Steve Farhood has watched and analyzed hundreds, maybe thousands of fights. Antonio Tarver has been in the ring many times and has experienced being both a pitcher and catcher, so he knows a thing or two as well. Curt Menafee has the least amount of boxing experience of the trio, but is certainly a trained observer as well.

Why then couldn't they agree as to what happened? Antonio Tarver was convinced the first of the last two right hands did not land with sufficient force to cause the results that ultimately occurred. Essentially that result was Contreras ending up frighteningly immobile, face down on the canvas in the corner of the ring. Tarver was convinced it was the second glancing blow, which first caromed off of the back of Contreras's left shoulder and then possibly the back of his head, that caused the damage. Replay after replay failed to establish the punch even came in contact with the back of Contreras' head, as Tarver and the Commission felt it did. To paraphrase Antonio, he said something like a lot of damage can occur by getting hit back there. He was implying possible damage to the optical nerve or the brain stem, as well as disrupting a fighter's equilibrium.

Steve Farhood just couldn't see it. After several looks, he wasn't convinced the final punch even came in contact with the back of Contreras' head. He was more inclined to believe the damaging blow was the second to last right hand, which appeared to have landed on or near the left chin and neck area of Contreras. The difficulty with isolating it as the primary blow involved the reaction or lack of reaction by Contreras. In other words, the lack of the typical reaction is what made Antonio believe this second to last right was not the "big punch". But, Steve wasn't giving in and remained convinced he was correct.

Menafee initially seemed to favor Antonio's position, but then waffled back to Farhood's, and in doing so managed to somehow distort description of the two final blows into one. His credibility suffered as a result. Another interesting thing happened, and that involved reflection of the entire fight and what it meant for the future of the two fighters. Antonio didn't feel the fight revealed enough about Bogere to automatically propel him into the top ten or even top fifteen of the lightweight division. Antonio wants to see more. That's a;fter he commented on how Contreras was fighting the type of fight he needed to fight against a whirlwind like "The Lion". Antonio fell Contreras was using his height properly, and moving well. He was also tying up Bogere when furious assault was started. Yet, Bogere was able to score the quick kayo.

Farhood, on the other hand, felt Bogere proved he is definitely worthy of moving up in the ranks, even to the top ten. Although, he added that "The Lion's" future opponent will have to be selected carefully, implying that Bogere still has flaws and makes mistakes. Hovever, Farhood believes Bogere has the speed and power to be a dangerous opponent for just about anyone.

As a precaution, Contreras was transported by ambulance to emergency, and everyone is hoping and praying for the best. In the meantime, if you want to witness things for yourself. Showtime will be rebroadcasting the fight on SHO EXTREME Tuesday, October 11th at 10pm. ET, which will give you a chance to form your own opinion about what occurred.

Article posted on 08.10.2011

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