By Robert Morales
There has been some debate over Antonio DeMarco's 44-second stoppage of John Molina, which took place last Saturday night at the Oracle Arena in Oakland.
Molina was rocked in the opening seconds by a big left hand, and then DeMarco trapped him in the corner and started firing combinations. Molina bent down, with his butt actually touching the rope. He protecting himself but not firing back. It didn't take long before the fight was stopped.
Although referee Jack Reiss could have ruled a knockdown when Molina's butt was on the rope, he didn't have to, said Che Guevara, chief inspector of the California State Athletic Commission.
"It's a judgment call," Guevara said. "Leaning on the ropes is really what the rules refer to."
Rule 350 states: "A boxer shall be deemed to be 'down' when any part of his body but his feet is on the floor, or if he is hanging helplessly over the ropes. A referee may count a contestant out either on the ropes or on the floor."
Guevara said Reiss appropriately placed his focus on whether Molina was able to defend himself.
"Jack was very vocal with the boxer, saying, "Do something, do something, do something,' " Guevara said. "And all he did was wilt. By going lower and lower and lower, he really left no choice as to what he (Reiss) could do."
Guevara said the rope really wasn't an issue at the end of the day. He also said those watching boxing on TV should not take as gospel what announcers are saying because they often don't know the rules nearly as well as they know the fighters and their accomplishments.