I started the night thinking Juan Manuel Marquez didn’t have a chance. I finished the night believing he was robbed.
Marquez was absolutely brilliant in last night’s fight against Manny Pacquiao. He avoided and countered Pacquiao’s punches to the point the champ was completely frustrated by the eighth round. He even seemed to be the more powerful of the two and certainly had the better timing.
Marquez proved why he’s still one of the best boxers at age 38, while Pacquiao turned in a performance that was less-than-worthy of the pound for pound champ. Pacman kept the fight competitive, a charging bull throughout the fight, but Marquez played the role of matador perfectly, his counter punches giving him an edge every round.
When the fight ended, most believed Marquez had finally beaten Pacquiao. Then the judges’ scores were announced.
One judge somehow had it 16-112 for Pacquiao, another 115-113 for Pacman, and the third had it an even 114-114.
Compare this to the crowd’s cheers for Marquez, overwhelming boos at the decision and, according to The Ring’s website, the fact many “ringside observers saw Marquez winning 116-112 and as much as 117-112.”
It wasn’t necessarily a corrupt decision – in fact, that’s a very inflammatory and reactionary statement to make. But it could be a sign that Pacquiao’s celebrity, once the sport’s greatest asset, has become something negative, a force that blinds judges, making them side with the star and not the winner.
Marquez, understandably frustrated, is now considering retirement after what should have been the highlight of his career. Unless a fourth fight is made, he will never have officially beaten his rival. But at least he gave fight fans one of the greatest trilogies in recent history.