By Lem Satterfield & Rick Reeno
In a follow-up to an earlier story on BoxingScene.com, IBF bantamweight champion Joseph Agbeko is unable to move forward with Saturday's defense against Abner Mares, which is scheduled to headline a Showtime televised doubleheader at the Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles, California. Agbeko vs Mares was the final bout of Showtime's bantamweight tournament.
According to Alan Hopper, head of public relations for Agbeko's promoter Don King, the boxer came out here to Los Angeles on Monday night. He left JFK after multiple delays totaling over three hours. And then he flew on an airplane for six hours and he arrived at LAX at 11:30 pm. The boxer collapsed after shortly getting off the plane.
"He was with me. Came out to get into the car and he walked by me and he collapsed right in the roadway at LAX. He could barely move. All that he could say was, 'This can't be happening. This can't be happening. I have to fight on Saturday night.' I asked him if he could get up and get into the car, and, he said, 'No.' I asked him, 'Do you need help?' And he said, 'Yes.'" I called 911, and the police and an ambulance were dispatched. And he was taken to Marina Del Rey Hospital. He stayed there until 5 a.m," Hopper told BoxingScene.com.
The emergency road physician, Dr. Susan Salazar, examined the boxer and knew the problem right away.
"She looked at me and she asked, 'Was he on a long flight?' And I said, 'yeah.' And she shook her head knowingly. She said that people get off of long flights and they step on an escalator funny or they step off of a curb and they get what's "Sudden Onset Sciatica," Hopper said.
"She said that I should take him to the hotel and see if he gets better. Give him some medicine. Yesterday, he thought that he was feeling better, but he wasn't, so we took him to another doctor. We saw Dr. Richard S. Gluckman, who is Los Angeles, San Pedro. He is well-known with within the boxing community. We went to him and he wrote a letter immediately that Joseph Agbeko was not fit to fight. They ordered him to take an MRI, and we're waiting for the results. But the main event is off. Joseph Abeko will not fight Abner Mares on Saturday night."
Onset Sciatica, Medical Definition: A severe pain radiating down the lower back into the leg. It is caused by inflammation or irritation of the sciatic nerve, the longest and largest nerve in the body. The sciatic nerve supplies the hamstring muscles and runs from the spinal cord to the knee where it divides into two smaller nerves. Onset of sciatica may be sudden; it is often brought on by strain of the lower back or a slipped disc.