Juan Manuel Lopez handed down a 1 year suspension

By Michael Collins: Former WBO featherweight champion Juan Manuel Lopez's career is going to be sidelined for a while, as earlier today the 28-year-old Lopez was given a 1-year suspension along with a $10,000 fine and 100 hours of community service by the Puerto Rican Boxing Commission for Lopez's off the cuff critical comments he made about referee Roberto Ramirez moments after Lopez had been stopped in the 10th round by WBO featherweight champion Orlando Salido last month on March 10th.

Lopez has 20 days to appeal the decision. A year suspension could really hurt Lopez's career, as he's been stopped in his last two fights by Salido and there are big questions about where Lopez can go after the two back to back crushing defeats. Getting beaten twice in a row and then being forced out of the ring for a solid year could effectively finish Lopez as a fighter. It may not seem like a big deal for some people, but for boxers itís crucial that they stay active without long layoffs like this.

A heavyweight can do it, but it doesnít help things. Can Lopez sit out for a year and successfully make a comeback? I donít know. I doubt heíll be able to make it back down to featherweight if he sits idle for a year, because heís already been ballooning up in between fights. But if you let Lopez do nothing for an entire year, and I bet heíll have problems making even super featherweight when he does come back.

It seems a little unfair for Lopez to be receiving such a long suspension given that he may not have been thinking straight at the time he was interviewed. He was badly hurt by Salido in the fight and who knows what that did to his head at the time he was interviewed. They interviewed Lopez right away and he still looked kind of out of it. I donít understand how they can suspend a fighter for an entire year for comments they made right after being stopped like Lopez was. It doesnít seem right.

Article posted on 04.04.2012

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