Convicted Artist Magazine

Feb 21st
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boxing_glovesI like the activity level of Victor Ortiz in theory, but I’ll be very surprised if both fights come off.  Ortiz is quickly becoming the next Fernando Vargas, in which too many big fights are going to have him a shot fighter by age 28.  He figured to win the Lopez fight, but it also figures to be a brawl.  He also figures to lose to Canelo, but do so excitingly.  He is a convenient tool for Golden Boy to throw in there against their stars.  Much the same way Bradley is for Top Rank… even if he has not technically lost yet.

Speaking of Bradley, he is actually the innocent one in all of this.  It is our impulse to hate the fighter who benefits from shitty judging… but only when it happens multiple times: Chavez, Ayala, Ottke, Sturm… does the fighter really come off looking like a protected punk.  Bradley will probably end up wishing he hadn’t gotten the bad decision over Pacquiao, because if he had lost (as everyone knows he did), we could instead focus on his heart and determination, going the distance and winning two of the last 3 rounds… while hopelessly outgunned, and fighting on two broken feet!  Instead, we treat him like he committed the horrible robbery.

Speaking of broken, it would be a nicer ending to the Paul Williams tragedy if he can eventually walk again.  I know he’ll never fight, but he’s a fighter who should not be wheeled to hall-of-fame events years from now.  He should be a success story, speaking at events the way he always spoke after a fight… way too fast, and repeatedly asking us all if we “know what he sayin’”.

Speaking of success stories… Brian Viloria needs more coverage.  Fighting on PPV undercards, in Hawaii, and the Phillipines has not helped him, but he was on more US TV when he was fighting 8-rounders!  Now that he is beating pound-for-pounders, we can’t see him?  He’s also exciting, and scores late knockouts.  What gives, with his management?  They find the best fights, and have made him a 3-time world champion, but can’t even get ESPN to follow him around anymore?

Speaking of ESPN, what’s with the ever-dwindling amount of Friday Night Fights.  It was supposed to be a weekly show, all year long.  Then the cut out fall, then they cut out summer Tuesday series.  Now, they are doing it only 2-3 times a month.  Stop letting promoters use it as a showcase, and put the brawls back on.  All you have to do is be more exciting than college baseball and you’re back in.  How hard is that??

Chris Strait

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