On the recent Pacquiao-Mosley PPV card, I saw 3 different forms of surrender on the 4-fight telecast. Fans deserve more than this, even for a basic cable fight card (and we usually get it there). Let’s explore what I mean, and what it means to surrender.
Sugar Ray Narh – Was he going to beat Mike Alvarado? Probably not. We shall never know, however, because as soon as it appeared he was even leaning toward the losing end, Narh surrendered in the corner. So many things can happen in another 7 rounds… injuries, fatigue, a shift in momentum. Narh, a once-beaten contender going in, was not a hand-picked opponent, looking for a payday (or at least not to the observers naked eye). However, even in the season of upsets, he gave himself no such chance. I agree with Antonio Tarver, that his purse should be withheld, but if they do, it will just go to the commission. The fans who paid for the PPV card should be partially reimbursed. That would be fair. That’s why it won’t happen.
Wilfredo Vasquez Jr. - Speaking of getting your money’s worth, this brawl made sure everyone walked away satisfied before the main event even started. Good thing, too, as the main event left a lot to be desired. For starters, it was a war that saw a comebacking Jorge Arce and an inexperienced phenom trading bombs for 12 rounds. Momentum shifts, both fighters hurt, it had everything. However, as the 12th round started and Vasquez was taking many shots, we actually saw something wonderful… something that we rarely see anymore. A referee was giving a hurt fighter a chance to weather the storm. However, just as Vasquez was doing just that, even landing a couple shots in return, our excitement became short-lived. We were quickly reminded that it’s not just referees who often ruin fights, in order to be the center of attention. Sometimes it’s cornermen. Ask David Lemieux, who also suffered from a similar fate, fighters need to make sure their corner is prepared when the going gets rough. Wilfredo Vasquez Sr. waved off the fight, and ‘rescued’ his son. While the scorecards indicated that Vasquez would have needed to dominate, or drop Arce (both unlikely scenarios at that point) to retain his title, he had come that far, and deserved the chance to try. Sometimes it’s not your own lack of heart which can cost you. Make sure your team is on the same page.
Shane Mosley – One can quit without actually quitting. It’s actually where we get the term “half hearted attempt”. Mosley did not succumb to complete failure, and quit like Narh. He also did not fall victim to a fearful, trigger-happy corner, like Vasquez Jr. Mosley saw his best assets (experience and guile) turned into his own worst enemies, as he simply fought to survive. By his own admission, Shane said he had never felt power he did when Manny hit him. He also admitted the openings he saw “could be traps”. With all the fights in his career, has he never thought that before? He was always willing to trade then. Mosley’s quitting cheats the fans the most, because they provide the illusion that it may be strategic. A listen into Naazim Richardson in the corner revealed that was never the case. Richardson saw the openings, and gave the correct instructions to attack. Mosley did not, or could not, follow them… not even once. He remained in the fight physically, but his mind had already checked out.