Juan Manuel Lopez will have to convince the WBO that he shouldn't be suspended for a year. (Photo by Amanda Kwok/Showtime)
Referee Roberto Ramirez Sr says that Juan Manuel Lopez's written apology -- he says the work of PR Best and not Lopez himself -- is not good enough, and that he wants the fighter to apologize with the same platform he used to accuse him of having gambling problems after Ramirez rightly halted Lopez's fight with Orlando Salido on Saturday.
And now, the WBO is threatening to hit Lopez with a one-year suspension if he can't come up with a good reason that they shouldn't.
WBO President, Francisco "Paco" Valcarcel, announced that a recent vote among the Executive Committee of the WBO - approved a resolution where Lopez must "show cause as to why he should not be suspended for one year from appearing in the WBO ratings or fighting for any regional or global title of the WBO."
Keep in mind that the way this is phrased, Lopez wouldn't be barred from boxing -- they can't take his license or anything, he just couldn't be involved in the WBO's business. But even though it's "not that big of a deal" in one way, the truth is no fighter wants to be suspended for a year by anyone for anything. It just plain looks bad, ignoring everything else.
Honestly, I'm pretty happy to see Ramirez and the WBO taking a hard line on this. If, just to argue the point, Lopez could produce some kind of evidence, that would be one thing. But it appears to just be tremendously sour grapes, and there is nobody in or around boxing who thinks that Ramirez did Lopez any injustice with that stoppage on Saturday.
He gave the fighter every chance to recover while he assessed the situation, and came to the correct decision that Lopez was in no shape to continue. He was standing, but that's all he could do at that point. Salido would have taken his head off if it were allowed to go on. There was no need, and Ramirez would have been incompetent to let it continue.