Sunday, April 11, 2010

I still haven't seen a live boxing card

It's not for lack of opportunity. I'm some 75-150 minutes away from several locations that regularly offer boxing cards. Last night, for example, there was an affordable boxing card 90 minutes away from where I live, headlined by two World Championship bouts: Celestino Caballero vs. Daoud Yordan, and Andre Berto vs. Carlos Quintana. As if that weren't enough incentive, part of the take from the gate was tabbed to benefit the victims of the Haiti earthquake. Be that as it may, I'm so miserable with allergies and so unbearably overwhelmed with work that I pussed out and stayed home. I had some regrets about not going, but I was consoled by the fact that I was able to watch the fights on HBO. If the two televised headliners are any indication, I should be glad I didn't make the trip. A one-sided beatdown? Impressive, but boring. An awkward, whiney, foul-filled fight? Yikes.

Caballero looked entirely too relaxed in his fight, but why shouldn't he? Game effort by Yordan notwithstanding, the fight was nothing more than a sparring session. It was extremely one-sided, but not the viciously brutal beating that HBO's announcers would have had you believe. Robinson vs. LaMotta was brutal. Mancini vs. Kim was brutal. This fight? One-sided, but not brutal. When Lampley brought up the Leavander Johnson fight, I almost threw up. Lampley makes me sick. He's like a woman on the rag. Everything is intensified exponentially, and always in favour of the house fighter / favourite. "HOW MUCH MORE OF THIS CAN YORDAN TAKE?" Relax, Lamps. Yordan took punishment, but he was never so much as stunned. People criticize Gus Johnson for his histrionics, but I think Lampley is just as douchey. Or maybe I'm just getting old. Whatever.

As for Berto, he needs to stop his whining. The first-round KD was legitimate. If fighters don't like getting hit in weird places, they should avoid positions in which the only places they can get hit are weirdies. Don't like getting hit in the back of the head? Stop bending over so far and/or stop turning away so far that the back of your head is the only available target. Another thing I dislike about Berto is the way he smothers his own punches by getting too close for adequate punching range. If a half-decent trainer gets a hold of him, the first thing he'd do is grab a meter stick and explain some fundamentals of proper punching distance. Be that as it may, this was an important win over a tough, cagey vet. Berto's handspeed is very impressive, and his character is top-notch. But the division's elite would tear him to pieces, quite easily. I hate to be a repetitive old fogey, but he needs way better handling before he starts so much as thinking about big-time fights.

Regardless, I'm sorry to report I'm still a live boxing virgin. But like any self-respecting virgin, I'll continue to wait for a worthy dance partner. Glad I didn't give up my cherry for last night's snoozefest.