Sunday, April 3, 2016

Why Do Some Boxers Get Preferential Treatment?

Why aren't some deserving fighters allowed to get a piece of the pie? 

I see it all the time and so do you - a particular boxer getting preferential treatment. Why, we ask ourselves, do certain fighters get catered to while others are left wanting?

Because, sadly, preferential treatment is part of the culture of professional boxing. Believe it. Since at least the time of John L. Sullivan, some boxers have been getting the okay to climb the ladder of success, while others have been held back from reaching their full potential. Don't believe it? Then ask yourself why Sullivan was allowed to refuse to defend his title against a black opponent back in the day.

This whole thing goes beyond ugly racial history, however. It has a lot to do with money, with the fact that, unlike other sports, boxing doesn't always require its participants to work for a goal in an objective manner. Sure, a champion will have to face a top contender, but sometimes it's worth wondering how that contender actually BECAME a top contender in the first place.

Indeed, boxing is entirely arbitrary in a lot of ways. Unlike The World Series, The World Cup, Wimbledon, The Super Bowl, The Kentucky Derby or any number of  major sporting events, boxing's big winners often aren't winners because they were the proverbial last man standing after the proverbial dust  settled. They're oftentimes winners because they've been managed well.

Look, boxing is the greatest sport in history - but the truth is the truth. And the fact is that it should be more competition-based rather than marketability based. Would we fans want that, though? How many fans would prefer it if so called "boring" fighters like Rigondeaux and Ward simply vanished into the ether?

My guess would be a whole lot. It's okay for us to criticize the sport we love, but sadly we sometimes have to accept the fact that we the fans are also part of the problem.

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