By Jose Sulaiman
Regarding the light heavweight defense between WBC world champion Bernard Hopkins and challenger Chad Dawson, held [last Saturday] in Los Angeles, California, in which the referee declared a second round technical knockout against the champion Hopkins, as he could not continue due to an injury after a push by challenger Dawson - the head offices of the WBC sent videos, medical reports, and the WBC's corresponding rules to the Board of Governors, who unanimously declared the fight a technical draw. Therefore, Bernard Hopkins is still the WBC light heavyweight champion of the world.
The WBC Board of Governors, after reviewing the video of the fight, unanimously declared that the action [by Dawson] reflects a clear intentional lifting of the body, followed with a push to Hopkins, that made him fall on his left side with part of his body outside of the ropes.
The report from California Medical Center was also considered by the board, which states “Bernard Hopkins has been released from the California Medical Center in Los Angeles after being x-rayed and examined by Dr. Sam Thurber, MD who diagnosed Hopkins with a separation of the acromioclavicular (A-C) joint which connects the collar bone and shoulder blade.”
The WBC determined that 'point 29 of the rule WC-34' related to fouls was violated: “any rough tactics other than clean punches,” covered the ruling of the WBC.
WBC's rule WC-32 was followed for the board's consideration: “Injuries from head butts, elbows, or other accidental or illegal actions (injury). The following description applies to injuries from not only head butts and elbows, but from any other accidental or illegal actions and/or if the bout can not continue:
* There will be a point deduction
* Technical draw if before the start of the 5th round
* Technical decision as per scorecards, if after the fifth round
Article WC- 33 was also considered: Body Fouls — except as provided below, there will be no disqualification for fouls to the body. The referee, at his discretion, determines that there was a foul and the ring doctor determines that the fouled boxer cannot continue and/or if the offending boxer should be disqualified. If the doctor determines the fouled boxer can continue fighting but he does not continue, he will lose by abandonment.
In conclusion, after thoroughly examining the video of the fight and the medical report, as well as the corresponding rules, the WBC's Board of Governors decided unanimously to declare the bout a technical draw and to still consider Bernard Hopkins as the WBC light heavyweight champion of the world.
The WBC regrets its inability to implement an instant replay video at the fight, due to the fact that the California Commission does not have that rule.
The WBC respects and can not intervene in the decisions of the boxing commissions where the fights happen, but it does intervene in regards the the recognition of the WBC world title, by being the exclusive owners of the trademark and championship accolades.
We hope that the California Commission will review our ruling at their next meeting in December.