By James Blears
The World Boxing Council's Secretary General, Mauricio Sulaiman, is roundly criticizing HBO analyst Larry Merchant for the post-fight confrontation with Floyd Mayweather Jr., which took place last Saturday night at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. Mayweather knocked out Victor Ortiz in four rounds to win the WBC welterweight title.
Thank God a functional time machine wasn’t provided by H.G Wells! In the heat of battle, Floyd, decided to dish out some retribution on Ortiz for a deliberate head butt, and was later enraged by Larry’s dogged determination to bring him to the book for his actions. Mayweather unleashed two big punches to score a knockout while Ortiz had his guard down.
Surely Larry is old enough, and certainly smart enough, to remember similar scenarios between George Carpentier and Ted Kid Lewis, and even more blatantly Jack Dempsey and Jack Sharkey?!?
Hands up, and remember to defend yourself at "all times" - which is boxing’s cardinal rule.
Mauricio Sulaiman stressed: “We are 100% in Floyd Mayweather’s corner. What a journalist does, has responsibilities and consequences. And this journalist put Floyd in a position that a responsible TV network [and] a responsible TV journalist should not do. What he did in front of millions is very regrettable. All the blame is on Larry Merchant.”
Mauricio said that following Victor Ortiz’s intential head butt, he was surprised that the penalty imposed by referee Joe Cortez was not more severe.
He enlightened: “Well…the rules state that a foul, when it’s intentional, the referee will proceed with a two point deduction. I don’t know whether there may have been some confusion, but the referee proceeded with a deduction of one point. The head butt created the entire problem.
“I would not blame Floyd. He suffered a terrible foul - a tremendous head butt, got cut on the lip and then with the confusion, just took advantage of an opening that Ortiz left. It was a lack of experience. He (Ortiz) was naïve, and he paid the price for that.”
Floyd’s ability to circumvent ring rust due to his incredible boxing ability, has led to long layoffs between fights. But, Mauricio Sulaiman confirmed now that he’s once again won the WBC welterweight belt, one of seven that he’s clinched in five weight divisions, he’ll have to be appreciably active in defending it.
Mauricio succinctly enthused: “Yeah, he has to fight, and I’m sure he’s wants to fight. He’s been very loyal, always green (the WBC’s colors are green and gold) and Floyd is a very special icon.”
Mauricio also suggested that a showdown between Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao is now inevitable, and it’s what the world wants to see.