Some people may be excited to see Nonito Donaire back in the ring against a willing opponent. Some people may be excited about seeing how Julio Cesar Chavez Jr handles himself against a tough veteran Marco Antonio Rubio. I'm curious to see all of these things, but it is not what has grabbed my attention in the week before this big fight card. In fact it is something very small, but with the potential to drastically improve the post-fight analysis done by people like us.
According to Ronnie Nathanielsz of Boxing Scene, HBO is seeking permission from the WBC to use a 1" x 1" sensor in the wrist of the boxing glove. Theoretically, this device would be able to measure the speed and force of the punches thrown in real time. The device has already been tested at 60 professional fights and countless amateur fights. I would assume that this would be the first time that this device has been used on a televised card. To borrow from the software vernacular, this would essentially be beta testing for the device before the designers choose to go gold.
The amount of data that would be available after this device becomes fully adopted will be staggering. We could figure out what a fighter's average punch speed is for each type of punch that he throws. We would be able to tell if a fighter is slowing down by looking as his average punch speed over his past couple of fights. If a boxer got knocked out by a punch, we could figure out the amount of force necessary to knock that boxer out, and which fighters in the division are capable of producing that kind of power. There would be no more arguments about who is the biggest puncher in a given division, because we would have the measurements. Same thing goes for the fastest hands in a given division. Also it would be easy to figure out if a boxer is carrying his power with him as he goes up or down in weight.
Essentially, this device would allow for a more statistical measurement of boxing, something that is severely lacking in the sport of boxing. Hopefully, this system can also improve the accuracy of Compubox punch statistics. Do you guys see any more potential uses for this new technology?