As much as fight fans will be talking about last night’s terrific battle between 154-pound warriors Jermell Charlo and Brian Castano for some time, and as much as one of the big talking points will be whether or not these two will do it again after coming up even after 12 thrilling rounds, the BIG talking point will be THAT score-card. 117-111 in favour of Charlo.
It happened again last night: boxing shot itself in the foot courtesy of a simply outrageous piece of officiating that judge Nelson Vazquez managed to turn in. Boxing just cannot help itself it seems. We’ve see too many crazy score-cards to keep track of over the years, and while there has been outrage and a demand for ‘something to be done,’ nothing ever does get done. And so we are always in danger of getting a wholly unacceptable scorecard like the one we got last night.
Last night’s fight was otherwise just about everything that is great about the sport of boxing – the best fighting the best (Charlo and Castano are the two best at 154), two-way action, a willingness to lay it all on the line. It’s a real shame the boxing judges are often, way too often, unable to act as professionally and as admirably as the two fighters who are risking everything in the ring.
In the long term, no REAL damage was done by last night’s score-card, as the drawn verdict was an accurate reflection of the fight and neither man was the victim of a robbery (the other two judges having it as tight as can be at 114-114, and 114-113 in favour of Castano, these scores you cannot really argue with). But that’s not the issue, these bad score-cards cannot be permitted to come into the world again and again. What’s the solution? That’s the tough part, the very tough part. Who the hell knows!
Plenty of boxing people are saying right now that they will not allow last night’s ghastly score-card to spoil a great fight. Can YOU rise above that 117-111 joke of a piece of scoring? If and when Charlo and Castano fight again (as surely they must), Vazquez cannot be allowed to be anywhere near the ringside. This of course will not mean a guaranteed set of accurate and competent score-cards will be turned in at the end of the fight. Sadly.