For once in its pathetic existence, the WBC has something right.
Yes, you read correctly. The WBC has something right.
Hard to believe, I know.
Jose Sulaiman and his committee of corrupt clowns actually recognize Carlos Baldomir as the welterweight champion of the world. They haven’t stripped him of the title yet. They haven’t designated a new champion (the WBC interim super-fresh, inter-galactic world welterweight champion) yet.
Baldomir’s their man. At least until it makes him fight #1 contender Henry Armstrong, then consequently strips him for refusing to fight a dead guy. (Actually, that distinction goes to the WBO, who rated Darrin Morris, dead since October 2000, in its January 2001 ratings).
And that’s a good thing, since Baldomir should be the recognized 147-pound king by virtue of his January victory over Zab Judah. You see, Baldomir beat Judah, who beat Cory Spinks, who beat Ricardo Mayorga, who beat Vernon Forrest, who beat Shane Mosley, who beat Oscar De La Hoya, who beat….
You get the idea. The whole, “I beat the man who beat the man” thing. It’s called lineage. And legitimacy.
But while the WBC uncharacteristically got it right, the same can’t be said for its counterparts in corruption – the International Brotherhood of Fools (IBF) and the World Bumbling-idiot Association (WBA). No, they decided to strip Baldomir’s predecessor, Zab Judah, of the title without “Super” lacing up a glove, for not fighting their top contenders.
And now the division, which was in order just a few months ago, is again in shambles. A champ here, a champ there, and a vacant title.
Ricky Hatton (the legitimate 140-pound champ who has no business fighting at 147 to begin with) won the vacant WBA title when he outpointed Luis Collazo in May. And, now, he may fight the WBA’s mandatory contender, Oktay Urkal (no relation to Steve Urkel, apparently), in a fight no one, including Urkal’s immediate family, cares to see.
The IBF title, meanwhile, is vacant. Apparently, the rocket scientists based out of New Jersey who run the IBF figured Mr. “vacant” was more deserving of a world title belt than either Mr. Judah or Mr. Baldomir.
Boxing’s sanctioning bodies are better strippers than hot, 19-year old California girls.
The vacant IBF crown likely will soon be filled by top contender Mark Suarez (a household name if there ever was one), and #2-ranked Kermit Cintron (last we saw, he was getting his head handed to him by WBO champ Antonio Margarito. There’s not enough time in the day to discuss the WBO, too, but you remember the dead guy).
Nevermind the big names in the division – guys like Mayweather and Judah and Hatton and Margarito (who, as a champ of the competing WBO, doesn’t even get the opportunity to be rated). What do you think Mayweather would do to Suarez? Or Margarito to Cintron? (Wait a minute. As we mentioned a paragraph earlier, we’ve seen that. But those at the IBF don’t pay much attention to details like history and past achievements. Just the green stuff. So we’ll conveniently ignore Margarito’s fifth-round execution of Cintron last year.)
And to think the IBF was created in 1984 to supposedly “clean up” the mess made by the WBA and WBC. That was before then-IBF prez Bob Lee (very possibly the least corrupt of all sanctioning body chiefs) and three others were indicted on charges of taking bribes from promoters and managers, to fix rankings and mandate fights, a few years back.
To say that the IBF has fallen considerably short of its 1984 goal is like saying Charles Manson made some bad life decisions.
And though the WBC got it right this time, you need not look further than its last welterweight ratings to see its own absurdity.
The top contender, until last Saturday, was Arturo Gatti. With all due respect to Gatti, the most exciting fighter of his generation, he hadn’t done anything but be popular in getting handed a top ranking and lucrative fight with Baldomir.
Unless you count a knockout of the completely anonymous and undeserving Thomas Daamgard – as of January, the WBC’s top 147-pound contender.
Daamgard ranks with Patrick Charpentier as the poster boy for the WBC’s ratings shamelessness.
Yes, he was undefeated. So is “Too Tall” Jones. I don’t see him getting a title shot.
But at least Daamgard put up a fight. Charpentier landed a punch against Oscar De La Hoya in 1998, then immediately returned to deserved obscurity.
So how long before Charpentier pops up as Baldomir’s #1 contender?
The welterweight division is just an example of the corruption and confusion that reign over boxing today. No pride. No integrity. No order. No class.
Just corrupt, irrational move after corrupt, irrational move. All made by the sanctioning body presidents, members and “ratings committees” who would rather line their own pockets with bribes than save a dying sport they profess to love.
If it continues much more, even hardcore fight fans will jump ship, and the sweet science will risk extinction.
But, hey, at least the WBC got it right.
Good job, guys.
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