Boxing


Marquez-Barrera: Too great a boxing match to whine about bad officiating

17.03.07 - By Alden "The Kid" Chodash: If there was reason to knock the great Barrera as a spent force for his two close and somewhat sub-par showings against Rocky Juarez, there is once again reason to consider him one of the best in the world in boxing after Saturday night. Same is true for Marquez, with the loss to Chris John and missed opportunities for a rematch with Pacquiao distant memories. We knew beforehand that both were fighting with something to prove. However, most had no idea that they would produce a fight this close, controversial, tumultuous, and needless to say, legendary.

The long-awaited bout began with a tremendous display of boxing skill put on by Barrera, using his jab to great effect and left hook in the trenches. Marquez began to score with his right hand in the fourth, a punch which eventually played a great role in the battle. The shot was very accurate, and when it landed it changed the flow of the bout momentarily.

Marquez had his most success with the right in the seventh when he had Barrera wobbly and sagging against the ropes. As the round concluded, it seemed as if Barrera had finally found his avenue of escape (the sound of the bell) from this vicious onslaught. However, with seconds left in the round, Barrera uncorked a right hand that downed Marquez, replays showing both his gloves touching the canvas. Barrera, stating afterwards that referee Jay Nady never pulled him off the downed fighter, took an illegal shot at Marquez which resulted in what appeared to be a "pivotal" point deduction (at least before the scores were read).

Marco Antonio Barrera showed his true legend as he amounted a comeback in the following rounds, actually winning most, and appearing to gain a small lead going into the final three rounds. After a hectic, evenly fought tenth, Barrera seemed to take the 11th off in search of rejuvenating new life to punctuate the bout in such fashion to retain his title. In the twelfth round, both put forth a great effort, both fighting as if they were unaware of their place in the fight, and both fighting hard for all three minutes. It was a difficult round to score and the decision seemed to be inevitably controversial because you could make a strong case that either man had won the bout.

The decision turned out to be very controversial, not because of the victor, but because of the lopsidedness of the scoring. Marquez had won the title and, although the scores weren't exactly realistic, he deserves all the credit in the world of defeating one of the greatest fighters in the history of boxing.

For Barrera, you'd hate to see his legendary career end after what appears to be unfinished business with Marquez. A rematch would be wonderful for both as well as the sport. A retirement, on the other hand, would close the book on a fighter I hope no one ever forgets, Marco Antonio Barrera.

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Alden "The Kid" Chodash is a member of the Boxing Writers Association of America as well as operator of AldenBoxing.com

Article posted on 17.03.2007



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