It was a great fight, but a controversial one. Unfortunately, controversy seems to be the common denominator for most of the bigger fights held this year.
The Dec. 10 title fight between newly-crowned WBA and IBF junior-welterweight champion Lamont Peterson and ex-champion Amir Khan in Peterson’s home of Washington D.C. is no different. Something didn‘t quite work out the way someone thought it should, and now Khan’s camp is talking about appeals, rematches, home cooking, incompetent judges and a referee who was maybe in over his head.
That fight ended in a split-decision win for Peterson, with Khan being penalized two points in the latter rounds for pushing by referee Joe Cooper. Those two missing points swung the close decision over to Peterson’s side and brought him the titles.
In a conference call Tuesday, Richard Schaefer of Golden Boy Promotions, which promotes Khan, said they were appealing the decision to both the IBF and the WBA. If they can‘t get the decision overturned, they at least want a rematch scheduled as soon as possible. If a rematch is all they can get, Schaefer said they already had a date (May 19) and a location (the Staples Center in Los Angeles) picked out.
Schaefer opened the conference call saying his gripe wasn’t with Peterson or his camp. It was with the officiating. And it was the “worse case of home cooking I have ever seen,” he said.
“There are serious issues with these point deductions,“ Schaefer said. “First of all, there were no fouls. Even Lamont, in a post-fight interview, said the push offs from Amir didn’t bother him at all. There was clearly no basis to deduct one point, and certainly no basis to deduct two points.”
Schaefer also claimed Peterson was warned at least 14 times during the fight to keep his head up when he was moving in on Khan, but he was never deducted a point. He said it was clear after the first round that “Amir was fighting two people in the ring instead of one."
Again, Schaefer said he didn't blame Peterson.
"It has nothing to do with him," he said. "The fact is, the referee didn‘t do his job, and worse, he did a (crappy) job. These points are fact. We didn‘t make them up. They‘re unquestionable facts. This decision has to be corrected. I hope they were just honest mistakes.”
Schaefer said if somebody can’t get a fair decision in our nation’s capital, then “we have a much bigger problem.”
Khan said from now on he'll think twice before going into someone’s backyard to fight.
“I hope Lamont gives me the rematch I think I deserve,“ Khan said on the call. “I was judged unfairly.”