SCOTT'S BAD LEFT HOOK UNOFFICIAL SCORECARD Round 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 Total David Diaz 9 9 8 9 9 9 9 8 70 Manny Pacquiao 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 KO 80
Records: Pacquiao 47-3-2 (36), Diaz 34-2-1 (17)
Pacquiao wins WBC Lightweight Title
Speed kills. Talent beats grit. One man was too tough for his own good.
After being knocked out in the ninth round, having amazingly stayed on his feet through eight rounds of relentless assault, David Diaz readily admitted that the speed of Manny Pacquiao was far too much for him. And we learned that Manny Pacquiao should have no trouble at 135 pounds.
The Filipino icon was sensational in his dominant win over Diaz last night, pummeling the hard-working WBC lightweight titleholder and utterly shutting him down offensively. Diaz's only good work came from the fact that his defense was sound enough to keep him standing as long as he did, because had it been any worse, the fight could have been over in four or five rounds.
Never for a single moment was Diaz in control of the action. Pacquiao moved around the ring beautifully, punching the whole time, and Diaz had no choice but to chase after him, eating shot after shot along the way.
CompuBox numbers were grossly in Pacquiao's favor. Manny landed 230 of his 788 punches, while Diaz connected on just 90 of 463. Manny outworked, outlanded, and simply beat the dog out of Diaz in Las Vegas. He opened up several cuts on the rugged Diaz's face, and finally bent him to his will in the ninth with a short, precise shot that was perfectly timed and finally buckled the legs of the stubborn Mexican warrior.
A lot of folks are already comparing the fight in many ways to the 1951 encounter between Sugar Ray Robinson, who stepped up to fight Jake LaMotta, but that fight took nine rounds to turn into a massacre. This one was a blatant mismatch from the opening bell.
Pacquiao's legend is fully defined, and was before this fight, really. He's a Hall of Fame fighter, and now, it's really hard to argue against him as the best pound-for-pound in the sport. Joe Calzaghe has a fine resume, but Pacquiao's is simply better. Titles at 112, 122, 130 and now 135, wins over the likes of Barrera (twice), Morales (twice) and Marquez. When faced with lesser competition, he generally dominates these days.
Pacquiao lost at 112 to Medgoen Singsurat in September 1999. Since then, he is 21-1-2 with 18 knockouts. It's not about being unbeaten; Pacquiao's lone loss was to Erik Morales, which he brutally avenged two times. It's hard to find an argument against Manny as the No. 1 pound-for-pound fighter out there.
As for David Diaz, I'm happy that such a good dude got a nice payday. When all is said and done, he could wind up making about $1 million. He'll finally be able to move up from that '91 Honda, and you know, I hope we see him get some more good fights. No, he wasn't in Pacquiao's league. But Diaz is going to test the durability, heart and soul of anyone that fights him. I have never seen a guy so thoroughly and obviously outclassed keep coming forward the way he did last night. Frankly, he got knocked out because he was still trying to win the fight.
SCOTT'S BAD LEFT HOOK UNOFFICIAL SCORECARD Round 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 Total Humberto Soto 10 10 9 29 Francisco Lorenzo 9 9 10 DQ 28
Records: Lorenzo 33-4 (14), Soto 44-7-2 (28)
Fight originally to determine WBC interim Super Featherweight Title
WBC chooses to not award Lorenzo with title
The pay-per-view wrapped up after the Pacquiao win, and I felt like I absolutely had not spent a bad 50 dollars. We got a hell of a fight in the opener, a very pleasing if uncompetitive main event, and a credibility-destroying knockout of an overhyped college basketball player.
What almost ruined it all was the other fight, saved for the prime set-up spot.
Humberto Soto was supposed to destroy the 36-year old Francisco Lorenzo. And he did. I generously gave Lorenzo the third round, and watching the fight was perfectly enjoyable. Lorenzo gave it his all.
But in the fourth, he was knocked down. He was suffering from an obvious broken nose, bleeding badly, and was then cut over his right eye, which bled like a faucet. He was down a second time in a bizarre sequence where referee Joe Cortez seemed to jump in and behaved as if he was going to stop the fight on two occasions, only to strangely jump back out of the action and let them continue.
On that second knockdown, after the two near-interferences by Cortez, the referee jumped in to keep Soto from punching. Soto landed a grazing blow to the top/back of Lorenzo's head. Now, the knockdown was not a spectacular one. Lorenzo's knee hit the canvas, and he was slowly going down. Plus, Cortez jumped in on Soto and told him to stop in mid-punch -- the punch that grazed.
After much deliberation and a fine acting job by Lorenzo that fooled the Nevada State Athletic Commission into thinking that that show, of all the things that landed, might have given him a concussion, Cortez chose to disqualify Soto and award the fight to Lorenzo, who was on his knees with blood gushing down his face, all from legal punches. Every single drop of blood was the result of a legal punch. And the disqualifying blow was just absurd.
Plus, listen...a concussion? Seriously? Congratulations, Mr. Lorenzo, on winning the boxing Oscar this month. I just wasn't aware that going, "My head! He hit me in my head! Hey, you know what?! I think maybe I have a concussion!" was a sure sign of a potential concussion.
I know it's a judgment call on Cortez's part, and by the book, you can defend it. But as has been said before, there are differences between the letter of the law and the spirit of the rule. Soto was CLEARLY the better fighter. Cortez and/or the ringside physician were almost certainly going to stop the fight after that knockdown anyway.
Emmanuel Steward was incensed, as was Jim Lampley. But Steward looked downright furious; I've never seen him so angry, even working a corner. He was livid.
His anger was not misplaced. Soto was positively jobbed in this fight, and always remember that loss No. 7 on his record comes with a massive asterisk. When asked if he wanted a rematch, Soto replied simply, "I don't know if he'll want one. I'm gonna take his head off next time."
SCOTT'S BAD LEFT HOOK UNOFFICIAL SCORECARD Round 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Total Tye Fields Monte Barrett KO
Records: Barrett 34-6 (20), Fields 41-2 (37)
I never want to hear another word from Bob Arum or anyone else about the potential destruction that Tye Fields will bring to the heavyweight division.
Anyone that wasn't financially invested in Fields could have seen long ago that this guy was a joke, a basketball player-turned-boxer who didn't start fighting until 24. At 6'8", he towered over most opponents. But he also just didn't know how to fight. He punched with all the rhythm and fluidity of a dog standing on its hind legs, and he moved around with the grace of a dump truck.
He could hit, sure. He could generate enough power just based on his frame to knock out chumps like Roderick Willis, or spent veterans like Bruce Seldon. Yet he had never faced a real fighter.
I expected that he would hurt the 37-year old Monte Barrett last night, and eventually knock him out, using his length to keep Barrett eternally at bay. Instead, as Fields lumbered about the ring, Barrett simply kept his head moving, made Fields drop what little guard he had in the first place, and then...
Wham! One big right hand crushes into Fields' jaw, and the onslaught starts. Fields would have crumbled to the mat right there with the slightest bit of wind, but Barrett kept throwing on him, landing a flurry of punches that sent Fields -- as Lampley called it -- "down on his butt."
57 seconds. That's how long it took for Barrett, a faded 37-year old former fringe contender that never broke through, to massacre Tye Fields. One flurry of punches. Fields looked as though he had absolutely no business in the ring with someone that accomplished. And if you can't look OK against someone like "Two Gunz," then you're done. You're not a champion, you're not a contender, you're not a potential contender, you're not anything.
It's not Tye's fault that I don't like him. He always did the job put in front of him to the best of his ability. He did it last night, too. The problem I had was this guy was shoved down our throats while having absolutely no natural talent whatsoever. This outcome should have been obvious. I thought I'd give Big Sky Tye the benefit of the doubt and say it'd happen against someone a little better than Monte, but nope -- Monte Barrett was plenty enough to get the job done.
Imagine if they'd ever stuck Fields into a ring with Peter or Klitschko or even Chagaev or Ibragimov.
SCOTT'S BAD LEFT HOOK UNOFFICIAL SCORECARD Round 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 Total Steven Luevano 10 10 10 10 9 9 9 9 10 9 10 9 114 Mario Santiago 9 9 9 9 10 10 10 10 9 10 9 10 114
Official Scores: 117-111 Luevano, 115-113 Santiago, 114-114
Both fighters down in the second round
Records: Luevano 35-1-1 (15), Santiago 19-1-1 (14)
Luevano retains WBO Featherweight Title
Luevano controlled the first four rounds, though both men tasted the floor in the second. The next four went Santiago's way.
And Mario Santiago, it's worth saying, may have given this fight away. As he went all out trying to stop Luevano in the eighth round, he punched himself out. He wound up essentially giving away the ninth round, and did the same again in the eleventh. It was a fight Santiago probably should have won, as he suckered Luevano into mixing it up more than he'd usually want to.
A rematch is certainly warranted. The 126-pound ranks are thinning, as Robert Guerrero is moving up, Chris John doesn't want to fight anyone worth a damn, and now it appears as though Jorge Linares might go to 130, too. It is worth noting, though, that Edwin Valero will not be leaving the featherweight division, as Jim Lampley noted numerous times last night. That's because Valero has never fought at featherweight to begin with. What a strange boner on Big Jim's part.
Luevano-Santiago stole fight of the night honors, which I didn't really expect. Santiago is an aggressive fighter, but Luevano is best known as a counter-punching tactician. Last night, he chose to trade leather with a slugger. Maybe not his smartest course of action, but a good fight came out of it.