Last night’s big card in Las Vegas seems destined to go down as one of the most controversial boxing events in many a year. We all know what happened in the main event rematch between Andre Ward and Sergey Kovalev – with the low blows thrown and landed by Ward infuriating Team-Kovalev.
But if that wasn’t enough (and it sure was), the chief supporting bout was also covered in controversy – even if far less people are talking about what happened in the Guillermo Rigondeaux-Moises Flores super-bantamweight title fight.
As fans who saw the short fight will know: Rigondeaux cracked Flores with a hard left to the head a second after the bell had sounded to end the opening session. Despite the lateness of the punch, Rigondeaux’ 1st round KO wins stands – for now. Flores is almost certain to appeal, and as Sky commentator Paulie Malignaggi said on air, the fight should have been ruled a no-contest. Maybe it will be demoted to this in the coming days.
But in an odd way, it’s possible the controversial ending to last night’s fight might help Rigondeaux some, and boost his profile. Dubbed, for far too long, as a “boring” fighter, one who “doesn’t score any KO’s,” the Cuban southpaw destroyed both claims in three minutes (and one second) last night.
A rematch is a good possibility, and maybe more fans will be looking to tune into a Rigondeaux fight as a result of what happened last night.
“We both threw punches at the same time,” Rigondeaux, now 18-0(12) said after the fight. “It was only a matter of time [before I stopped him]. At 122 [pounds] I’m making everybody disappear. What am I gonna do? I’m the champion. I’m a complete fighter and I’m ready for anyone.”
Flores, now 25-1(17) naturally had a different take on things:
“It’s not fair. It’s clear that the bell rang,” the Mexican fighter said. “He didn’t throw a punch the whole round. I was winning the round and he waited for after the bell to throw a punch when I dropped my hands down.”
Let’s wait and see if the result will stand. And if there will be a return fight.