The Cyber Boxing Zone's Olympic Boxing Roundup

by Michael P. Accordino

First off, I think that it is necessary for me to say that I only
witnessed four olympic boxing matches: three American and one foreign.  I
did see David Reid score a last minute stoppage of a Cuban fighter to win
the gold medal and felt that this was the best match of the games.  I wish
that I could report more on the fighters and the fights but there is not
much for me to say.  I felt that the coverage of boxing in this olympics
was extremely limited.  I can remember the 1976, 1984, and 1988 Olympics;
all offered a great deal of coverage on boxing.  Starting in 1992 and this
year, the coverage has diminished.  I think that it is important to focus
on the reasons why.

Many reporters this week have stated that boxing is in danger of
losing its olympic status.  This danger was recognized after the
controversial losses of Floyd Mayweather and other American boxers.  It
seemed as though the judges in these matches may have not been doing their
jobs with objectivity.  It is also clear that the public views boxing as
barbaric and as a threat to ones health.  Furthermore, there are rampant
reports of corruption amongst promoters and the  sanctioning bodies.  All
of these problems may be the reason why boxing is being covered less and
less in the olympics.

The charges that have been brought against boxing by the public
deserve attention.  The issue of corruption should be dealt with first
because it undermines the quality of the sport and results in poor
treatment of the fighters. Then there's the public notion that boxing is a
threat to one's health, which could be considered to be accurate.  Still,
there are many other sports that offer the same risks to one's health (auto
racing comes to mind).  The public also has the perception that the
objective in boxing is to render your opponent senseless.  That is the
wrong perception.  The legendary trainer, Ray Arcel, once said that the
"art" of boxing is to hit your opponent without getting hit in return. I
still believe in Arcel's assessment of the sport.  The public has often
cried for boxing to be banned because of its risk of  bodily harm.  Many of
these same people also cry for women to have the right to choose how to
treat their bodies.  My contention is this: Why can't men have the same
right to choose how to treat their bodies -- and take up boxing if they

There are many aspects of boxing that can be considered
disorganized as well as down right evil.  But, if these problems are
addressed properly by those on the inside of  amatuer and professional
boxing, the sport should be able to continue on a professional basis and
receive olympic coverage.  There is no better time than the present for
action.  Then I would hopefully have more to write about the excitement and
sheer accomplishments of olympic boxing instead of the lack thereof.

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