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Three Punch Combo: A Compelling Fight on the Frampton-Dominguez Bill and More

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  • Three Punch Combo: A Compelling Fight on the Frampton-Dominguez Bill and More

    Click image for larger version  Name:	jason sosa.PNG Views:	1 Size:	349.5 KB ID:	14042


    EDITOR'S NOTE: This is Matt's original article which was taken down moments after it was published when it was learned that Carl Frampton had suffered a freak injury, potentially putting the entire card in jeopardy.

    By Matt Andrzejewski

    THREE PUNCH COMBO -- ESPN+ will broadcast a card from the Liacouras Center in Philadelphia, PA on Saturday that will be headlined by former featherweight champion Carl Frampton (26-2, 15 KO’s) who will take on veteran Emmanuel Dominguez (26-8-2, 18 KO’s). Flying under the radar is the co-feature, a bout that could steal the show. This bout, a 130-pound contest scheduled for 10 rounds, features another former featherweight champion in Jason Sosa (22-3-4, 15 KO’s) from nearby Camden, NJ, who takes on Haskell Lydell Rhodes (27-3-1, 13 KO’s). This is an evenly matched crossroads fight between fighters with contrasting styles. It should be very entertaining.

    Sosa (pictured in his bout with Nicholas Walters) knows only one way to fight and that is to come forward applying constant pressure which he will do from the opening bell. An accomplished body puncher when he gets into range, Sosa is the type of fighter that is more than willing to take a few punches just to get the opportunity to land one of his own.

    While Sosa’s style tends to lead to exciting contests, it can also take a toll on a fighter. In his last fight in January, Sosa struggled mightily in winning a 10-round decision over sub-.500 journeyman Moises Delgadillo. There is a legitimate question as to just how much Sosa has left in his tank.

    Rhodes is a quick athletic fighter who likes to use his legs. He is going to use the entire ring and fight from the outside, carefully picking his spots to unload his punches. While he does have fast hands, he tends to not be busy enough, allowing himself to be outhustled. Against Sosa, Rhodes will need to be more active than we have seen in the past.

    Stylistically, Rhodes could be a nightmare for Sosa. But Sosa is just so determined and will keep coming, applying the pressure all night even if he may not be the same fighter from just a few years ago. Considering the contrast of styles along with the evenly matched skill levels, it’s a very compelling bout.

    How To Make Boxing A Safer Sport, Part One

    If there is something that all boxing fans can agree upon it is the need to make this a safer sport. But just how is that accomplished? What I propose is a minor rule adjustment.

    Open scoring has long been a subject of debate amongst boxing fans. For the longest time, I was strongly opposed to any and all concepts of it. But my thoughts have changed ever so slightly as I now think that a modified form of open scoring if universally adopted can improve fighter safety.

    Before I present my proposal, let me start with an anecdote. I will from time to time wager a few bucks on a fight. And sometimes my having a little skin in the game will alter how I view a fight. I sometimes see something in favor of the fighter that I wagered on that others are just not seeing.

    Whenever this happens, I always go back and watch the fight a second time. And amazingly, I generally see something entirely different.

    So where am I going with this? Well, if $25 can skew my viewpoint, I can only imagine how someone with a much larger stake in the fight -- a cornerman, manager, etc -- could be viewing it. No doubt their perceptions can be skewed as to what is actually occurring inside the ring.

    I would like to see a modified open scoring system implemented for any bouts that are scheduled for more than eight rounds to make potentially relevant parties aware of what is actually occurring in the bout.

    For example, let’s take a bout scheduled for 12 rounds. If after eight rounds a fighter needs at least one 10-8 round to get mathematically back into the fight on the scorecards, the commission informs that fighter’s corner, the referee and doctor. No scores are read but the commission is informing everyone just where that fighter stands on the scorecards. This would also be done after the ninth round if the scenario still exists.

    Every fight is different and this is not saying the fight should necessarily be stopped. But the seeds are planted for everyone to start monitoring the situation much more carefully. If the fighter shows no hope of turning things around, then those involved (referee, corner, doctor and commission) may opt to end things rather than allowing the fighter to take more needless punishment.

    For a 10-round fight, the commission would inform the relevant parties after rounds six and seven. For an 8-round fight, this would be done only after round six.

    Please note this is a careful balancing act as to not go too far with open scoring where it alters the dynamics of a fight. This is why this would only be done after those select rounds and not after rounds 10 or 11 of a 12-round bout. We are trying to catch obvious situations of one-sided fights and inform the relevant parties of the facts of the situation.

    For the record, this idea first came to me after watching the Teofimo Lopez-Diego Magdaleno fight in February. If the relevant parties had all been told just where Magdaleno had stood on the scorecards after round six, there is a good chance someone would have ended that bout before allowing Magdaleno to absorb vicious and unnecessary punishment in the following round before ultimately getting knocked out.

    These are the situations that I want to see avoided going forward and such a modified open scoring system could do just that.

    How To Make Boxing A Safer Sport, Part Two

    Something that we in the media and as fans can do to make this sport safer is to change out mindset on certain things. In particular, I think we need to remove the term “quit” from our vocabulary and instead applaud fighters for making the courageous decision not to go forward in a bout.

    Again, let me begin with a quick anecdote. I was upset when Guillermo Rigondeaux did not come out of his corner to start round seven for his fight with Vasiliy Lomachenko in December of 2017. I voiced my displeasure on social media and various other outlets. In hindsight, I was wrong for doing so.

    The first line of defense for a fighter is his corner. The second is the referee. But neither the corner nor the referee can truly know what is going on inside a fighter’s body during a fight. This is where it is on the fighter to make the courageous decision if something is not feeling right and remove himself from the fight.

    In the boxing culture, a fighter making such a decision generally faces enormous backlash. And as such, many fighters are hesitant to take that step. But we need to change that culture. If something is not right, fighters need to be encouraged to pull themselves out.

    In many sports, athletes are told that if something is not feeling right that they need to inform someone as soon as possible. For example, a major league pitcher who is feeling discomfort in his pitching arm is expected to tell his manager even if that means being taken out of the game. The pitcher is not quitting but making a common-sense decision to keep a possible injury from getting much worse.

    Boxing needs to adopt the cultures of other sports and encourage fighters to make common-sense decisions when something does not feel right inside the ring. This falls in part on us, both members of the media and fans. If we change our mindset, a fighter may feel more comfortable in removing himself from a bad situation and that could potentially save him from a serious injury.

    Check out more boxing news on video at The Boxing Channel


  • #2
    The sportsbook I use in PA has Rhodes at +350 which I think is a severely misrepresented line. With how bad Sosa looked in his last fight and given the fact that Rhodes' style would present him issues anyway, I am all over Rhodes at this price. Rhodes has to be move hands more than he has in the past and may have to sweat out a decision (will hedge with a small amount on the draw line) but really like the value on Rhodes here.

    I think implementing the safety improvements outlined above would go a long way in making boxing a safer sport. I love this sport but we also need to evolve a little more in making it safer. I think simple common sense changes, some to the rules and some to our mindsets, can go a long way.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by oubobcat View Post
      The sportsbook I use in PA has Rhodes at +350 which I think is a severely misrepresented line. With how bad Sosa looked in his last fight and given the fact that Rhodes' style would present him issues anyway, I am all over Rhodes at this price. Rhodes has to be move hands more than he has in the past and may have to sweat out a decision (will hedge with a small amount on the draw line) but really like the value on Rhodes here.

      I think implementing the safety improvements outlined above would go a long way in making boxing a safer sport. I love this sport but we also need to evolve a little more in making it safer. I think simple common sense changes, some to the rules and some to our mindsets, can go a long way.
      I hit the road to PA a few hours after this post and when I go to place my wager see the line on Rhodes already has moved to +240 which is significant. Of course liked +350 more but still on him at this new line. And think there could be even more movement on Rhodes as the fight approaches.

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