TruSparta XI – Coliseum Culture

By David Matthew on November 13, 2013
TruSparta XI – Coliseum Culture
He looked at the Jumbotron and asked his corner, “Is that my face? My face looks like that?”

We must examine our own moral compass to question why we enjoy watching a man beaten to near-death states of consciousness…

•    In watching Nonito Donaire’s electrifying rematch versus a dangerously determined Vic Darchinyan, I couldn’t help but think about the unfair expectations fight fans had, and still have, for the Filipino Flash. Not that Donaire isn’t an excellent fighter—he most certainly is—but is he a top 5 pound-for-pound guy? No. Even before Rigondeaux dethroned Donaire from the prized pound-for-pound ladder, was he ever realistically a fighter who belonged in that discussion? He is a brilliant counterpuncher with gifted timing, but he is still unable to initiate offense on his own terms, and has looked ordinary against outclassed, gun-shy opponents looking to merely cover up and survive. Against an economical puncher and defensive maestro like Rigondeaux, Donaire looked absolutely lost. Despite this, Donaire has already achieved greatness in the sport, has gotten the most out of his modest frame—which isn’t exactly built for power and knockout punching—and has refined his technical aptitude with an unwavering commitment to the science, and should always be saluted for such. Against action fighters like Darchinyan, Donaire will always excite and thrill with his ability to fire off crisp combinations while under duress—and he delivered yet another memorable thriller in closing the Vic Darchinyan chapter of his career in glittery fashion.

•    Unsurprisingly, Miguel Cotto’s name is mentioned in connection with yet another mega-fight. Cotto—who has made an honorable, high-stakes career out of the fighting the very best fighters while they are in their prime—has reportedly been offered $10 million to fight Canelo Alvarez. It is rumored that he is deciding between that fight and a clash against Sergio Martinez. Both fights would be intriguing, and amazingly so, as Miguel Cotto is still accepting the most difficult (and fan-friendly) assignments in boxing. I know I am not alone when I say what a thrill it was to watch Miguel Cotto look as dynamic as he did in obliterating Delvin Rodriguez. Sure, Rodriguez is not top-tier class by any stretch of the imagination, but Cotto’s work with Roach does seem to re-instill a commitment to sitting down on punches, digging to the body, and re-tooling Cotto’s left hook in a major way. Cotto-Canelo may be more intriguing now than ever, considering Canelo’s vulnerabilities were so dramatically exploited by Mayweather in May, while Cotto’s final career-wave seems to be surging, just in time for a 2014 superfight.

•    In what promises to be a genuine mega-fight of global proportions, Manny Pacquiao and Brandon Rios have geared up for their November 23rd clash in Macau, China. One thing is for certain: There will be plenty Red flowing in China as these two high-risk, all-action fighters square off. Even though both men are coming off losses, this is an elite-level prizefight with huge implications. For Pacquiao, a dazzling win over Rios puts him right back into the Mayweather picture, particularly after the Mayweather-Canelo hangover in a fight where only one fighter lived up to expectations, and that was Floyd Mayweather. Now that Mayweather has successfully ousted all of the top competition around him, a clash with Pacquiao suddenly seems more appealing than a clash with Khan, or a Garcia who is not yet ready for that stage. In order for the word “Mayweather” to even be mentioned, Pacquiao must first gun down a bigger, stronger, angrier Brandon Rios—who realizes the urgency of the moment. Interestingly, if any fighter can psychologically recover from the kind of knockout that Pacquiao suffered from Marquez, it is Manny—the undyingly optimistic warrior. Even after being knocked out, Manny was smiling, and he will smile at the face of danger once again as he attempts to steer a heavy tornado in China, hoping to spin out yet another Pacquiao-monsoon of offensive flurry until Rios is knocked out—which would be quite an achievement. Alternatively, if Pacquiao loses or is knocked out, will fight fans still have the same appetite for destruction to watch one of its most prized champions continually beaten down? Huge fight for Pacquiao; huge fight for boxing. Regardless of what fight fans think of Pacquiao—almost all of them will be watching with great anticipation in a fight that Top Rank can actually promote as in-stable mega-fight that is well-matched for the sport.

•    Andre Ward faces Edwin Rodriguez in what has been an unceremonious build-up for a fighter who actually does belong in boxing’s pound-for-pound class. Ward—who joins Tim Bradley in the “elite fighter club who has done nothing wrong yet everyone hates” —will return to the ring after fighting just twice in two years. Ward has battled multiple injuries, and endured a rugged, highly competitive campaign to rise atop Showtime’s Super Six Tournament. He followed that achievement by dominating Chad Dawson in a trans-divisional fight that has cemented his pound-for-pound supremacy where he stands only below Floyd Mayweather as boxing’s brightest. Alike Mayweather, Ward does not enjoy the type of support from the American mainstream media that normally should attach to an athlete of his stature. Perhaps it’s because of his modest personality, or his ability to turn a fight into an Olympic-like exhibition of outpointing your opponent effectively hitting without getting hit—to “swim without getting wet” (Naazim Richardson). For fight fans who have the requisite boxing I.Q. to appreciate acquired tastes like Mayweather, Ward, or even Wladimir Klitschko—it is remarkable to watch a guy continually outsmart and outstrike charging bulls—yet Matadors are only widely lauded in Spain. Not America, where bloodlust urges coliseum crowds to value Gatti-Ward brawls over pugilistic chess matches, romanticizing savagery while simultaneously denigrating tactical mastery.

•    …which brings me to Magomed Abdusalamov, who becomes yet another skeleton in boxing’s closet. Mago’s brutal brawl against Mike Perez was highly celebrated while it was going on—even gushed over as HBO’s Max Kellerman repeatedly praised the raw brawl, chiding Wladimir Klitschko and asking whether he “and Povetkin were watching” —as if to somehow give them a lesson on what Heavyweight boxing should be. Surely, Wladimir was watching—and assuredly, he learned exactly how not to fight. Meanwhile, New York showed us exactly how not to officiate, regulate, and medically monitor a warrior who took unnecessary damage that now threatens his long-term health in a very real way. Abdusalamov, who suffered a broken hand, nose, and absorbed severe damage to his facial structure, lost consciousness shortly after the fight, and a CT scan revealed brain swelling and a blood clot. Doctors then removed a portion of his skull to relieve pressure, and Mago was medically induced into a coma. It was not difficult to ascertain what was happening in the ring that night. Mago was fighting with astounding bravery, and was competitive—although clearly outgunned—against a bruising Perez who managed to dramatically change the state of Mago’s face in just a few rounds, prompting Mago to look at himself on the Jumbotron and ask his corner, “Is that my face? My face looks like that?” as he continued to show signs of a fighter neurologically altered from thudding impact. Neither his cornermen, his manager, the referee, nor the ringside physicians seemed to have the courage, competency, humanity and/or understanding of the situation to put a halt to the beating—and that is a huge problem. While some members of his team are saying all the right things in the aftermath of the bloodbath, they failed to exhibit the necessary wisdom on fight night to have any larger perspective than just the here and now. A competent adjudication process should ensue to review this travesty so that it does not repeat itself in New York—or anywhere else where boxing is sanctioned. While some may praise such slugfests—and understandably so as the fight possessed true warrior grit—we must examine our own moral compass to question why we even enjoy watching such a relentless, never-ending beating of a man to near-death states of consciousness. This was not a singular knockout surprise-punch that had you question whether the fighter was okay or not from a single blow (Pacquiao-Marquez IV). This was a round-by-round bludgeoning of a man until his face no longer resembled the one he entered the ring with. This fight should have been stopped, well before the final round. While some may regard Andre Ward, Wladimir Klitschko, and Floyd Mayweather as “boring” fighters who should get into firefight brawls in order to appease the coliseum culture, tragedies like this further validate their skillful approach, whereby they control fights with science, not savagery. So when Virgil Hunter talks about the deep responsibility and duty he feels to protect his fighters in the ring, perhaps fight fans should reexamine their own conscience and subject it to real scrutiny, of which the New York Commission should now be subjected to.

Follow us on Twitter@boxing_com to continue the discussion

Manny Pacquiao vs Brandon Rios (GP promo)



Мигель Котто vs Делвин Родригес/Cotto v Rodriguez



WCB 11/16/13: Ward vs. Rodriguez (HBO Boxing)



Perez vs. Abdusalamov 03.11.2013



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  1. kid vegas 10:55am, 11/16/2013

    Great exchanges on this this article. I learned a bunch.

  2. kid vegas 10:50am, 11/16/2013

    Great exchanges on this this article. I learned a bunch

  3. Petraeus Report 11:55pm, 11/15/2013

      For those who follow the world series of boxing W.S.B,tonight the group B,open with a victory of the newer franchise,“cuban domadores” (cuban tamers),who won 5 victories to 0 defeat aganist the last edition finalist Mexico’s Guerreros,it was the comback for Cubans,to the pro rangs,after 50 plus years of absence.You could check the rest of the teams schedule and results on the A.I.B.A.page.

  4. Andy 11:47pm, 11/15/2013

    Double and convenient standard we have…but i know, we’re in USA, capital of short memory retention.

  5. Mike Schmidt 01:45pm, 11/15/2013

    Same post as the George article. PS A fighter on the undercard of Cotto vs Margo II at the Garden got DESTROYED. I was ringside reach out and touch at Cotto’s corner and could not help but feel the power, speed and impact of that destruction. After the fight I walked down the street a few blocks with a friend and a boxer I represented to grab a slab of pizza at some small joint. Who should walk by, with his gym bag, and all alone, but the destroyed one. We all just kind of shook our heads. What can one say to such an image of post fight consideration???????

  6. Ted 01:42pm, 11/15/2013

    Yes agreed

  7. Mike Schmidt 01:32pm, 11/15/2013

    Same post as on the Clarence George article, but in short—as per Ted hits this point on—look for ways to minimize the risk, reduce the risk and most certainly post fight procedure. Again, let’s be very very very honest here. Given the nature of the sport, hits to the head, every fighter, undercard on up, should have to post fight be kept under 24 hour head trauma monitoring, kept awake, scanned, x-rayed etc.. THAT IS NOT GOING TO HAPPEN OF COURSE. A hard jab, just one, given a certain person’s health status, can be fatal. Jim Lampley’s article is beyond superb—I have not read it before and thank you Sir. Leal as pointed out IS AN ENTIRELY DIFFERENT SITUATION THAN THIS AND SHOULD BE DEALT WITH IN A VERY AGGRESSIVE FASHION AS TO WHAT HAPPENED.  On the Lampley article—at what exact spot does one stop that fight, the Mago fight…??? I must say one thing on Jim Lampley’s article—some $250,000 dollars was raised etc etc was that the figure??—HBO fight, HBO profit—come on guys how much are you going to put $$$$ in the fund—not that any damn fund is going to replace the obvious but obviously will help the family, the boxer’s children etc as they try and navigate the horror of memory thru to a hopeful contributing and proud member of society. There are unending issues here—do the Promoters provide disability and life insurance policies, what about State Commish—they all generate a profit here, Should the major TV networks that drive the dollar and survival of the sport and profit from it hugely have, at least for their events, health, life and disability for the participants- is it available to some extent—if not what type of other insurance is available or sponsored fund—why don’t you ask Jim and the HBO guys that—is that even a fair question to ask them—hell I don’t know, I just don’t know.

  8. Ted 12:54pm, 11/15/2013

    yes, I also agree with that Matt, but if in fact he vomited BEFORE he left the arena and someone knew it, that will be a flash point because vomiting and blunt trauma as in boxing and football represents a big red light. As a minimum, it usually y means a concussion.

    great exchanges. More later

  9. Ted 12:51pm, 11/15/2013

    This concept expressed in this article written by Jim Lampley about the death of Levander is the one that has gotten me though many a tragedy and has kept my passion alive for the sport.

    The Frankie Leal situation did not meet my requirements and I am still bitter about that one because he should never have been allowed in the ring. The Mago situation is far more difficult as there were many different variable coming together to form an imperfect and tragic storm. In retrospect, I think Max may have been the only one to publicly make note of it, though many of us I sense were thinking the same thing. But if anything had been done wrong , was it an egregious mistake? Me. I’m not going to do 20-20 on this one, but I will do it on Frankie Leal

    Here is the link to Lampley’s article: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jim-lampley/death-in-the-ring_b_7939.html

    One other thing. I don’t believe there is any right or wrong answer on this one—at least not yet. But I am delighted to see that we on Boxing.com are taking it seriously and gradually forming a viewpoint.

  10. Matt McGrain 12:46pm, 11/15/2013

    I guess part of the problem is a certain contempt bred by familiarity.  “It’s another fight.”  They have an ambulance - but Mago doesn’t get to ride in it, because, hey, we’ve seen worse.

  11. Ted 12:41pm, 11/15/2013

    I agree that it is unsolvable, BUT the dangers can be addressed. I just posted this on CG’s blog:

    dedicated my first book to the following:

    Alejandro Lavorante, Francisco “Kiko” Bejines, Cleveland Denny, Jimmy Doyle, Ernie Schaaf, Frankie Campbell, Jimmy Garcia, Duk-Koo Kim, Stephan Johnson. Michael Watson, Willie Pep, Jimmy Ellis, Gerald McClellan, Sergei Artemiev, Greg Page, Robert “Kidd” Wangila, Jimmy Young, Lucien “Sonny” Banks, Davey Moore, Jesus Chucho Morales, Booker T Washington, John Montanes, Seiji Tanaka, Michael Kuhn, Benny Cleveland, Yoshihiro Irei, Daniel Espindola, Brian Baronet, Carlos Barreto, Hendrik Bira, Archie Kemp, Hector Merino, Ed Sanders, Tzvetan Todorov, Luis “El Puma” Villalta, Sonny Boy West, Scott Wood, Charlie Mohr, Johnny Owen, Benny “Kid” Paret, Irish Jerry Quarry, Mike Quarry, Bob Quarry, Laverne Roach, Enrico Bertola, Randie Carver, Beethavean “Bee” Scottland, Robert Benson (a.k.a. Bobby Tomasello), Leavander Johnson, Gerardo Derbes, Bradley Stone, James Murray, Becky Zerlentes, J. Ulrich Regis, Steve Watt, Willie Classen, Pedro “Rockero” Alcazar, Martin Sanchez, Talmadge Bussey, Willie Stevenson, Andy Balaba, Roy Holloway, Nunu Puafisi, Beau Jack, Paul Ingle, Young Ali, Bobby “Schoolboy” Chacon, “Kid Akeem” Anifowoshe, Jacob Morake, Isidro “Gino” Perez, Daniel Thetele, Felix Bwalya, Angelo Jacopucci, David Thio, Wilfred Benitez, Paul Ingle, Victor Burgos, Meldrick Taylor, Emiliano Valdez, Denny Moyer, Rod Douglas, Jean-Claude Vinci, Irish Billy Collins, Bradley Stone, Lito Sisnorio, Spencer Oliver, my friend Alex Ramos, and so many others.


    But not much is to be gained in using their misfortunes as a club with which to bludgeon the sport for which they died. We can improve the safety—yes—and we should. After Willie Classen died, we made sure that an ambulance was available before any fight began. God knows, after Greg Page was horrifically in injured, we made sure , an umber of safety regulations were passed.in Kentucky named the named the “Greg Page Safety Initiative.” This is what needs to be done. Rather than stressing the matter of pointing fingers, the problem should be fixed to minimize a repeat.


    There will always be plane crashes, BUT we must lean from each crash in order to reduce the chances of a repeat. That’s my point about boxing.

    But my next post will be the one that I have always used to hopefully get me through a situation like Mago’s

  12. Matt McGrain 12:25pm, 11/15/2013

    “The welfare of fighters is coming first” - yes Ted, as an axiom i’m fine with that - as a starting point.  The problem is, taken to a natural conclusion, fighters shouldn’t fight.  At all.  A stop of point on the way to that conclusion is that fighters, when they fight, should fight with headgear, should be scored on scoring punches landed regardless of the power with which they are landed (to discourage hard punching) over shorter distances.  Just as “The welfare of fighters is coming first” is an axiom, so are these less punctuating observations.  This is because there is *no way for the code to be made safe as it stands*.  That is REGARDLESS of “standards” of officiating, seminars or guidelines. 

    I think that, as a sport, were it mainstream, mass-media attention in combined with the type of injuries Abdusalamov has sustained, boxing would be unsustainable.  It is a hideous conundrum that David Matthew does well not to hide from, but in the end, is almost certainly unsolvable.

  13. Ted 12:14pm, 11/15/2013

    Old Yank , the example you give are correct but dated and I doubt they would hold up today.

    Valero’s exception was based on a fluke and Mesi’s was based on fighting in Canada and in states where they don’t give a damn I don’t think that would happen today. The pre-fight uproar would be too great.

  14. Ted 12:10pm, 11/15/2013

    FrankinDallas . answer to your question is absolutely not.

  15. Ted 12:08pm, 11/15/2013

    I immediately picked up on Kellerman’s view. It was the very same one he gave on the fateful involving Bee Scotland when he died from the injuries sustained on a cumulative basis a few years back, but fought back just enough to stay in the fight. That’s the scenario referees and doctors need to have seminars on. As I have said at least 5 times, hindsight is 20-20. BUT, it is not 20-20 where Frankie Leal is concerned nor was it 20-20 on Oleg vs, Danny Williams. let the fans howl, but the welfare of the fighters comes first.

  16. Matt McGrain 11:57am, 11/15/2013

    David, I want to commend you on this direct thinking.  It is to be admired.  There’s been a lot of hand-wringing this past month, but not a lot of direct thinking like this.  But I want you to imagine a much better world, where Mago was unharmed cerebrally BUT, the fight was stopped in the seventh.  Now you have Mago, furious, unbeaten, a known puncher and an angry crowd onside, fans blowing up message boards, anchoring studio television personalities castrating officiating because “Mago could win with one punch”, “was still fighting back”, in a “tough fight, fought by tough men.”  Where are we now?  We’re having a rematch that only a tiny percentage of referees would stop in any but the direst circumstances.

    You’ve been brave I’ll follow your lead - that fight SHOULDN’T have been stopped.  The officiating was good.  It’s a fight.  There were horrible punches.  That’s the sport.  Other cliches. 

    The problem, for me was not the officiating but that Mago was allowed to walk into the street after a cursory examination, vomit on the street and take a taxi to the hospital.  That’s disgusting.  How about this - any doctor, any referee and any cornerman can order any given fighter for 24hrs observation after any fight - purse withheld if the ruling is defied.

    And i’d agree with Mike that you can’t say your job is done after asking a fighter if he’s ok to continue.

  17. David Matthew 09:35am, 11/15/2013

    Very insightful comments, gents - greatly appreciated.  Part of boxing’s allure (at least to me) is the wholly individual nature of the competition, and the organization.  While I do call for competent regulation, I also would not want to prevent a fighter from making his/her decision - as a sovereign human being - to fight for livelihood, pride, culture etc…  But of course that comes with some caveats such as whether one is sound in mind in making the decision to fight….it takes wise judges - not just with a moral conscience, but with an inherent understanding of the sport and its warrior culture—it is my opinion that we do not have such wise people running the sport - either on the promotional or organizational side….for the most part.  I was calling for the fight to be stopped while watching it at about the 7th round mark, when I felt it was clear that Mago was going to lose the fight (although he was still competitive and it was fairly close - even late) - but more importantly, would seemed even more predictable was that Mago was going to continue to eat shots w/ little regard for self-defense.  One of the standardized rules of officiating i’d like to see more emphasis placed on is determining whether or not a guy is capable of self-defense.  Even though mago was firing back, late in the fight he was largely incapable of seeing/defending power shots, and such continued head trauma/concussive activity cannot and should not be sustained in such a brutal fight.  So while I do appreciate the wild-wild west nature of the sport, I think that rugged individualism should be tempered with a more grounded and bolstered organizational structure when it comes to regulation health-standards that look out for the health of these warriors.

  18. Matt McGrain 08:30am, 11/15/2013

    If you watch combat sports, people are going to get hurt, badly.  Amateur boxing is safer but similar, and can be recommended to people who find the pro game squeamish (up top, not just after a terrible tragedy like Mago).

    I think that calling for the fight to have been stopped is 20/20 in a rearview mirror.  If David says he wanted it to be stopped during the fight, I completely believe him.  But Kellerman’s view was typical.  David’s is atypical.  I’m not saying that makes Max right and David wrong, what i’m saying is there would have been hell to pay if that competitive fight had been stopped.  And maybe rightly?  It’s either professional boxing…or it’s amateur boxing.

    People who watched this fight, for the most part, were thinking “FIGHT. FIGHT. FIGHT. FIGHT.”  Just like Kellerman was. 

    Like so many were.

    Like we always will.

  19. Old Yank 12:26pm, 11/14/2013

    If negligence can be forseen and prevented than all would be for it. Debate, suggestions and serious reexamination of the entire system for clues for improved safety is all good.

    But the seriousness of how this can be approached is highly questionable. Debate and examination is fine, but the sport has a history of looking foolish with even the most obvious of risks. I will give two relatively recent examples:

    1. Joe Mesi after suffering a brain bleed was able to obtain a license to box.
    2. Edwin Valero after suffering a brain bleed (and after substantial strategic assistance from Bob Arum), was able to obtain a license to box.

    If men who have suffered prior brain bleeds cannot be protected (from themselves or risk of death), then how can things of lesser obviousness be takensly seriously?

    There are aspects to the sport that are truly all screwed up. To steal language again, “A pox on [all] your houses!”

  20. Mike Schmidt 11:06am, 11/14/2013

    Much has been made of the in-the-ring decisions and given the terrible circumstances broad debate is a good thing on that. Without pointing fingers PERHAPS the after fight protocol should be given a hard re-examination. Asking a guy who has been pounded to the head for ten rounds if he is okay is tantamount to asking a drunk who has been sitting drinking at a bar for hours if he is okay to drive home. My point being that you are not going to get a reliable answer from guys at this stage and even more from guys that have an ingrained warrior spirit. There were of course other post-fight standard examination items. What protocol should or needs to change post fight I am not sure but somehow things failed this warrior in a terrible way. Given the sustained head shots over ten rounds this fighter took should it have been mandatory asap to the hospital immediately after the fight. I am asking, I am not pointing fingers.. we were not in the inner circle of Chief Second, Doctor, Commish etc that night….

  21. Old Yank 11:00am, 11/14/2013

    Fingers point; blame apportioned; words spoken…retracted…revised…couched then crowded in a new round of fingers pointed and blame apportioned.

    Many closet clasics exist that more than rival the action and brutality of the bout that leaves Abdusalamov clinging to life.

    A man awaits a spark that can ignite a torch that can illuminate the path back to loved ones.

    At times tragedies only produce loss. To steal a line, “All are punish’d”.

    This is the source of my writer’s and fan’s love/hate relationship with the sport.

  22. FrankinDallas 10:06am, 11/14/2013

    I’m not a brain surgeon….could anyone really determine
    at the time that Mago had a blood clot on his brain?
    I believe the fight should have been stopped as obviously
    he had something going on with the side of his face…
    it wasn’t a title bout, there was no reason (aside from
    his team losing a cash cow) to continue taking
    punishment although I’d bet there would be “fans”
    who would have called Mago a quitter.
    We’re giving the corner and the ringside Doctors well
    deserved grief, but surely the boxer’s mentality should
    be examined…if he was having mental issues that no
    one else could have diagnosed, he should have told
    his corner “No mas” and “Take me to the hospital, my
    head hurts”.

    And finally: Cotto has taken WAY TOO MUCH punishment
    in his career….does he REALLY need the $$$ that much
    to take another beating which he surely will get at the
    hands of the much bigger Canelo?

  23. Mike Schmidt 09:55am, 11/14/2013

    Schmidt from attending previous New York State fight dressing rooms—Inspector watches hands taped of course and makes his own identification ink/mark on the tape when all taped on fighter—Inspector does same with gloves—watches them put on, laced, and tape over lace and makes his mark. Also, don’t get to use your own water—bottles brought in and do not leave inspectors view until you go do that ring entrance-Resto was a wake up call in a big way on a lot of these items.

  24. Irish Frankie Crawford Beat Saijo aka Gimpel 09:05am, 11/14/2013

    The face saving and very acceptable way out….let me count the ways….shoulder injury (ask Hopkins about that one) ....check….knee injury….check…...sprained ankle….check…any indication vision is impaired….check…..“disabling” low blow….check and double check. Facial fractures….hand fractures….whoa…. hold on there pard….that’s comes with the territory…..you’re just gonna have to work through that….you have heart don’t you….I thought so.

  25. Ted 08:35am, 11/14/2013

    Good point Robert.

    George R, I believe all gloves are checked and initialed before the fight with witnesses. I believe.

  26. George R 08:24am, 11/14/2013

    Did they check Perez’s gloves after the Mago fight? It remined me of the Irish Billy Collins vs Luis Resto fight. I was at the Garden that night.

  27. Robert Ecksel 08:15am, 11/14/2013

    I have a friend who’s a neurologist. He has spoken about patients who had part of their brain removed and could barely walk or speak. But if they had been musicians, they could play their instrument as if nothing had ever happened. That speaks to the mystery of the brain, the elasticity of muscle memory, and may inadvertently speak to Abdusalamov’s courageous performance at the Madison Square Garden Theater.

  28. Ted 07:50am, 11/14/2013

    On the other hand he was fighting back and one judge had it close.


    To Max’s credit, he did say something about whether or not the fight should be stopped even though Mago was still in it. Multiple injuries likely camouflaged the worse one. In my view, it was an imperfect storm—a confluence of unfortunate circumstances coming together.

  29. Irish Frankie Crawford Beat Saijo aka Gimpel 07:31am, 11/14/2013

    Here’s what I’m thinking….any but a Goddamned idiot could see that Mago suffered some type of facial fracture in the first round and that any blows to that side of his face would cause excruciating pain and further aggravate the injury….any but a heartless, soulless cretin could discern from his body language that Mago knew that the injury that he sustained was different and far more severe than any he suffered in the ring in past fights and he was asking for help….let’s face it even verbalizing it with his questions about the condition and appearance of his face. Sitting comfortably in my living room I’d like to think that if I had the power, I would have heeded his call for help and stopped that abomination after the very first round…..I wonder if I would have had the moral courage to do so when surrounded by highly agitated idiots and cretins.

  30. Ted 05:55am, 11/14/2013

    Most of how I feel is reflected by my posts on this article.

    http://theboxingtribune.com/2013/11/the-moralists-the-swine-and-you-magnos-monday-rant/

    Nice job David

  31. seanpasbon 09:49pm, 11/13/2013

    It’s not a game, but it’s still a sport. And like all sports (and like all games) there are rules and limitations that define them. It’s just so much harder to enforce, much less see those lines, blurred as they are.

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