Mayweather "Victory" is a Joke

September 19, 2011

Los Angeles, CA - Boxing fans witnessed the two-city HBO-PPV event "Star Power" on Saturday night.   It was supposed to be a great night for boxing, but an absolutely disgraceful ending to Mayweather-Ortiz will be all anyone will remember from this night.  The loud boos echoing through the MGM Grand and the Staples Center were entirely justified.

Officially, Floyd Mayweather Jr. stayed undefeated and regained the WBC Welterweight Title with a 4th Round KO of Victor Ortiz.  However, what was "official" is absolutely meaningless. All you need to know is that Pretty Boy Floyd knocked out Victor Ortiz when Ortiz was still apologizing to him for an earlier head butt and believed that the fight had not yet resumed.  Notoriously bad referee, Joe Cortez (apparently they let anyone into the Boxing Hall of Fame), was conspicuously looking off into the yonder during the whole episode.

Real classy Floyd.  I wonder how this one will look on the Mayweather highlight reel?  The fight's conclusion was more akin to Mayweather's WWE ring experience than any major title fight that I can remember.

Imagine a wrestler whacking his unsuspecting opponent over the head with a steel chair while the referee is inexplicably distracted. That pretty much summarizes the way this bout went down, all you need to do is replace wrestling's in-over-his-head ref Dave Hepner with the hapless Joe Cortez.

Already the Mayweather camp, with surprising help from the establishment media, are trying to legitimize the victory.  The way the stories are flying around, you would think these guys were watching a different fight.

Here are just some of the ridiculous rationalizations being created to mislead or confuse fans about what took place on Saturday night.  Too bad for the boxing establishment that fans actually can see what happened for themselves.

Myth #1: Floyd Mayweather's knockout should be undisputed because he was "dominating" Victor Ortiz over the first 3 rounds and would clearly have knocked him out anyway.

Not only is this statement beside the point, it is not true. 

While the "punch stat" numbers are being used to suggest the fight was not competitive over the first three rounds, these do not indicate how the fight was going.

Round 1 was reasonably competitive, but clearly a Mayweather round.  Round 2 was pretty even, and many people (including 1 of the 3 ringside Judges and HBO's Harold Lederman) gave Ortiz the round.  Round 3 was the most lopsided round, as Ortiz struggled to get inside and Mayweather landed right hand leads repeatedly.  A one-point lead after three rounds is hardly a "dominating" performance.

More importantly however, Ortiz, who weighed 14 pounds more than Mayweather on fight night, seemed to be walking through anything Mayweather was landing.  The HBO broadcast team was noting this fact and Emanuel Steward was suggesting that Ortiz's confidence was growing as a result of his ability to shrug off Mayweather's punches.

Furthermore,Ortiz was doing well in Round 4 and had a good flurry along the ropes before he lost control and hit Mayweather with a head butt.  At the time referee Joe Cortez deducted a point from Ortiz the fight was highly entertaining.  Mayweather was absolutely not dominating Ortiz the way he had dominated Marquez and Mosley (after round 2), and there was a sense that Ortiz could make things very interesting at the least. 

If Mayweather was going to knockout Ortiz, it would have been after many more rounds of landing similar punches - and during those rounds Mayweather would have had to avoid getting caught with one of Ortiz's haymakers.

Myth #2: The knockout was "justice" as Ortiz got what he deserved because he threw a head butt earlier in the round. 

I wonder what some people consider "justice" nowadays.  Ortiz's head butt was clearly against the rules and he was rightly deducted a point by the referee for his behavior.  That was justice.  Ortiz also apologized profusely to Mayweather (far too profusely for most people's taste) for the head butt.

How then does Mayweather's decision to take advantage of a miscommunication in the ring strike anyone as just?  How can it sit right with anyone that Mayweather is essentially bragging about delivering on his promise to "knockout" a defenseless Ortiz?

Myth #3: Ortiz has only himself to blame for not keeping his guard up at all times as referee Joe Cortez clearly told the fighters to resume fighting.

Of course Ortiz should have been more careful and apologized less.  That is hardly the point though. 

It is pretty obvious that Joe Cortez messed up big time, although his refusal to accept any blame is hardly surprising.  The so-called "fair but firm" referee is in fact neither and never has been.

First, Cortez failed to have either fighter go to a neutral corner - a basic requirement when a point is being deducted.  Second, there is never a justifiable reason for a referee to take a step towards the ring apron and start talking to anyone while the fight is going on.  It is so unusual, that it is quite possible a fighter might think that there is a delay in the action.  Third, Cortez hardly helped the confusion by never saying "Box" as a referee would typically do, but instead just said "Let's go!" before directing his attention elsewhere.

Myth #4: The KO showed just how much power Mayweather has.

Can someone please explain to me how any professional fighter couldn't seriously hurt another fighter when he has an open target looking in the other direction? Mayweather landed a right hand with all his weight behind it, from about 18 inches away, on an open-mouthed Ortiz who was looking at the referee.

Mayweather's ability to hurt Ortiz, therefore, does not suggest that he has knockout power at 147 pounds, but rather shows that he knows when to take a cheap shot.

Myth #5: Floyd's knockout "combination" was instinctual and not a conscious manipulation of the rules.

To describe Mayweather's knockout blows as a left-right "combination" is highly misleading. In fact the video shows Mayweather accepting the hug from Ortiz and landing a left hook quickly as Ortiz was coming out of the embrace.  Mayweather then gathers himself for another second and lands a clean right hand when Ortiz was clearly looking at the referee with his mouth open.  Mayweather was fully aware that Ortiz was not ready to fight and chose to take advantage of that moment.

Illegal? That depends on whether Joe Cortez's failure to do his job should be held against Mayweather.  In any case, it was gutless and unsportsmanlike.  The punches were not the actions of a fighter who was sure he was going to win anyway.  If Floyd wanted simply to give a little payback for the head butt, he could easily have stopped with just the left hand shot he gave Ortiz.  Instead, he looked for a quick ending.

Myth #6: The ending is just another example of how Mayweather "controversy" actually brings entertainment and excitement to the sport of boxing.

This is the most absurd suggestion of all.   The end was the opposite of entertaining. Is it satisfying entertainment when the crowd leaves confused and angry about the outcome? Almost every fan must feel totally cheated by the ending of that fight. If Mayweather cared an ounce about entertaining the fans, he would have beaten Ortiz in a fair fight.

Floyd Mayweather may have rubbed many fans the wrong way in the past.  People previously have accused Mayweather of (1) hand-picking easier opponents; (2) dodging Manny Pacquiao; (3) not being an exciting, offensive fighter; or (4) simply possessing an astonishing number of annoying personality traits.  However, few have ever questioned the legitimacy of his actual performance in the ring.  That will change after what happened on Saturday night.

It is also highly disturbing that many respected boxing experts appear dedicated to sweeping the controversy under the rug (Dan Rafael and Teddy Atlas of ESPN; Kevin Iole of Yahoo! Sports; and Lance Pugmire of the LA Times, to name a few) by almost entirely blaming Ortiz.

I would hate to think it's because they fear that boxing doesn't need the bad publicity and promoting Mayweather's victory perhaps helps the sport - and their own livelihoods.  It is actually ridiculous attempts to legitimize an obviously bogus Mayweather "victory" that will alienate sports fans.

In the end, Mayweather's victory will hardly help him achieve his stated goal of "cementing his legacy."  It will more likely be viewed as one of the most embarrassing moments of his boxing career.

Manish Pandya
Staff Editor for


  1. Please, anyone who knows boxing knows Ortiz didn't win a single round in the fight. Floyd was not only landing more and more, he was throwing more and more. His accuracy went up to 52%, and this in the round that he THREW more than Ortiz.
    Get a clue man you don't know anything about boxing. 52% landed is huge.
    And that flurry that was successful?? If it was successful Ortiz wouldn't have gotten frustrated and headbutted him in the first place.
    Sure you can blame Cortez, but it's also Ortiz's fault, and he knows it, he even said so. No coach will defend him on that. Not even his own coach said anything after the fight because he saw Cortez start the fight again and Ortiz just stood in no man's land with Floyd.
    I'm disappointed the fight ended early, but it was Floyd's fight.

  2. Anonymous,

    Are you out of your mind? Punch stats are deceiving . Everyone knows that. That's why they are not used by official scorers because they aren't precise indicators of ring generalship or effective aggression. Pitty-pat slappers like Calzaghe can inflate punch numbers without doing much to their opponents.

    The reality is that the fight seemed to be getting more competitive in that fourth round. Ortiz caught him cleanly in that flurry before the head butt. He just lost his cool. Did you even watch the fight homey?

  3. Anonymous,

    Apparently you believe that compubox numbers, which say nothing about how damaging a punch really was, are the holy grail. Get a clue. Btw, Mayweather landed 40% of his punches in round 4 (Ortiz landed 33%) - at least get your facts straight.


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