We want to publicly thank the President of the World Boxing Council, Jose Sulaiman, for his forthright and compelling statement regarding the Margarito bandaging situation.
President Sulaiman is 100% correct in stating that Margarito should not be punished since he was totally unaware of the improper bandaging. The commission hearing established Margarito's lack of knowledge and innocence.
The commission punishment is based on the theory that the boxer is the captain of his team and is responsible for any wrongdoing of his trainer and any of his cornermen.
This is not the law.
When Roger Mayweather, trainer for Floyd Mayweather, entered the ring improperly during the Mayweather vs. Judah fight, Roger was punished but the Nevada commission quite properly never suggested that Floyd be punished.
We in America should respect the law, fundamental legal prinicples and not be swayed by emotion. The "message" sent by the California Athletic Commission is the wrong message. The correct "message" is that a person should only be punished if he or she is guilty of wrongdoing. We hope that Margarito will appeal the unjust revocation of his California boxing license.
I can't decide what my favorite part of this is. It's either comparing Roger Mayweather stupidly jumping into the ring like a damn fool and going after Zab Judah (Roger deserved a harsher punishment, in my opinion) to a fighter with illegal hand wraps, or it's the "rise up in cheer!" part at the end where Bob dramatically starts, "We in America..."
If it turns out to be old Twinkie cream on those wraps, the wraps were still illegal. This continued thought that we're going to rally behind Margarito, the poor moron who was a fool to trust evil mastermind Javier Capetillo, is really starting to annoy the hell out of me as a boxing fan. They are chucking Capetillo under the bus because Javier Capetillo doesn't make them any money. Antonio Margarito makes them a lot.
Note that Bob Arum (Margarito’s staunchest supporter) is not even going so far as to say the wraps were legal, or that it’s a misunderstanding, or even that there was nothing seriously illegal on the pads. He’s just saying Margarito is clueless to the whole thing. Capetillo is the fall guy, or at least that’s their intent. It’s less proving that Margarito is “innocent” than it is proving he’s not the guilty party, and shifting the focus and blame to Capetillo. That is all that Arum and Co. are trying to do.
If it comes back that there was plaster or some other dangerous substance on those pads -- and there hasn't been an official word yet, remember that -- then Bob Arum better do a hard 180 on this thing, or he's going to sound like a raving lunatic who doesn't live on the same planet as most of us. I think Bob's a fine promoter and obviously he's a great businessman, and he knows the law. I also think he truly does care about Antonio Margarito and all of the fighters in the sport, Top Rank or not. He's not a bad person. He even has some valid points. But this situation isn't winnable in the court of public opinion.
Did you know Panama Lewis still denies any wrongdoing in the Billy Collins incident?