Being a boxing writer for over five years I know the sport inside and out. I’ve seen people get title shots without ever beating anyone remotely in the top twenty. I’ve witnessed terrible decisions that had to come down to gross incompentance or criminal corruption. The decisions were so bad I can not think of any other variable. While I am talking about the professional ranks where a won or loss can cost a fighter, his promoter and manager millions of dollars, life in Olympic boxing is also fraught with the same kind of unbelievably bad decisions.
Ask Roy Jones, Jr.
Jones “lost” to South Korean fighter Park Si-Hun, despite out landing Park 86 punches to 32. That would be like scoring 10 runs in a baseball game while holding the other team to 1 and being declared the loser. The decision was so bad the IOC was shamed into suspending all three judges that ruled in Park’s favor. Unlike the 2002 Winter Olympics scandal where in the aftermath the IOC made Russian and Canadian figure skates co-gold medalist, Jones has never been given a reprieve.
That brings us to this year’s Olympics. It is no different. Lest you believe I am another biased American in my Olympic coverage (I am- though I try not to be), the Ukrainian team filed a protest over lightweight Oleksandr Klyuchko’s 10-8 loss to Hu Qing on Monday night. The protest was reviewed and denied. Not to be outdone the Brits also jumped on the bandwagon with British bantamweight Joe Murray and his coach accusing Olympic judges of favoring his Chinese opponent Tuesday. Finally, our US coach Dan Campbell didn’t like the scoring in medal favorite Rau’shee Warren’s upset loss to South Korea’s Lee Ok-sung.
Grrrrr… looks like Russia doesn’t have the corner on being the Grinch who stole Olympic spirit from the world…