By Jason Pribila – Ringside in Atlantic City: On Saturday Night at the legendary Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, Golden Boy Promotions presented a bout sheet that featured a prospect and a legend. Many fight fans felt that the meat of the Showtime Triple Header was the middleweight title fight between New York’s Peter “Kid Chocolate” Quillin (30-0, 22 KO) and Philadelphia’s Gabriel Rosado (21-7, 13 KO).
The fighters did not disappoint, however, the outcome was disappointing to all. Well, with the exception of Team Quillin.
Quillen won the early rounds, and seemed to be in a class above Rosado. However, in round four the ring seemed to tilt, and suddenly it was the challenger that seemed to be moving downhill. Each fighter had their moments as the exchanges started to intensify in rounds seven thru nine. The fight seemed to be on the table as we approached the championship rounds, and then suddenly…it was over. Rosado had suffered a cut in round nine that caused the referee to call time-out in round ten. A ringside physician tripped on the ropes as he was in a rush to cross the ring to take a closer look and wave off the fight.
There is no questioning that the cut was in a bad place, and a fighter’s safety must always come before entertainment. However, the cut had yet to prove to put Rosado at a disadvantage. He was the fighter who was coming forward, and he clearly had heavier hands. The crowd was stunned and voiced their displeasure at the sudden ending of what was becoming an entertaining fight.
It is an especially a tough pill to swallow when a fighter from Rocky Balboa’s hometown is stopped for a cut in the house that Arturo Gatti built.
Following the fight Rosado echoed what many of his faithful fans, who made the 40 minute trip from Philadelphia, had seen transpire in the ring.
“I was walking him down and backing him up with a jab,” Rosado explained to Jim Gray in the ring following the fight. “They knew he was getting hurt, so they stopped the fight.”
From Press Row, I was surprised when time was called. That being said, I did not have a close look to see how bad the cut had become. Nothing about the action in the ring led me to believe that Rosado was fighting at a disadvantage.
The next thing I noticed was that as the referee was calling the physician from Rosado’s corner to look at the cut; the physician from Quillin’s corner was charging across the ring. He was midway across the ring and he was already shaking his head,, “no”.
My notes read, “They’re going to rob this kid.”
And sure enough, it was waved off at 0:40 of round ten.
I could not hear what Quillin had to say following the fight because the chorus of boos drowned out his voice. And although many pundits and fans will declare him a loser, he is not to blame for the sudden stoppage. It turns out that unless Rosado scored a knockout, Quillin had a built-in safety net as all three judges had him ahead, including one that had him winning by a shut-out. Once again we have a disgraceful judge that filled out their scorecard before the opening bell.
It is time that judging be taken out of the hands out of the commissions and their checks be written by the venue and not the promoter. The unfair advantage being given to fighters under the lead promoters banner is killing this sport. Following the Chavez-Vera fight, I suggested that the boxing fans/writers on twitter.com should declare official winners. After last night, I have changed my stance. This role needs to be given to former fighters. They are the only ones who know how many hours of work they put into preparing for a fight. Not to mention all of the leather they eat and blows their head and body absorb during sparring. They are the only ones who truly know how far back physically and financially a loss could set them back. Especially when their fate is in the hands of someone who will be assigned another fight long before the fighter receives another payday.
Again, not every close fight is a robbery. I had Quillin up 86-84 after 9 rounds. Rounds 6, 7, and 8 were all close rounds. I gave Rosado two of the three because his punches seemed to be heavier.
Final punch stats also reflected a close fight. Quillin had the advantage in punches thrown (349-297), punches connected (88-80), and power punches (171-150). However, those numbers are skewed by the fact that Quillin built a statistical lead over the first three rounds.
What’s next? I think Quillin will be featured on a card at the Barclay’s in early 2014. I think his opponent will be fellow New Yorker (and Golden Boy stable mate) Daniel Jacobs. This is an attractive fight and Jacobs will sell seats and his personal story will make the fight an easy promotion.
Rosado? Unfortunately, he’ll have to settle for the sentimental win at this point. He continues to improve, which makes him even an even more dangerous high risk/low reward fighter. I think he will return to headline a few NBC Sports Network fights before earning another shot at a big fight at middle or junior middleweight.
Jason Pribila is a full voting member of the Boxing Writers Association of America. He could be reached for questions or comments at firstname.lastname@example.org and followed on twitter.com @PribsBoxing.
October 26, 2013