Golden Boy Promotions and Amir Khan have submitted a formal appeal to the WBA, IBF and District of Columbia Boxing Commission in hopes of reversing Khan’s close decision loss to Lamont Peterson on December 10. Khan and Golden Boy CEO Richard Schaefer held a conference call with the media earlier this week to lay out the facts of their case. While originally focusing on referee Joe Cooper deducting two crucial points from Khan for pushing, Schaefer now emphasized irregularities in the actual scoring. A decision on the appeal is expected back by mid-January. Schaefer also confirmed that a “seven-figure offer” has made to Peterson’s camp to rematch Khan on May 19 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles.
Well, first of all let me state that the purpose of this call is in no way or shape to attack or question the performance of Lamont Peterson and his team. I think Lamont fought a very good fight, it was an exciting fight. In fact, many people feel it was another fight of the year candidate, so this is absolutely nothing about taking anything away from Lamont Peterson. It is simply to look at the facts, present the facts, and give the people involved an opportunity to correct their mistakes. It’s basically about doing the right thing.
So let’s look at these facts. Let’s look where we stand. There was clearly controversy after the fight on this scoring. I’ve ha, have hardly ever seen uh, the, the time it took for tabulating this card and announcing the decision. That was very strange in itself.
Then you look at the official card, which showed initially a 10/10 on the scorecard of George Hill for round seven. It was later crossed out and changed to an 8/10 in favor of Peterson. Then you look at the WBC’s WBA supervisor, Michael Walsh, who is a certified public accountant and CPA by profession, and probably the man with the most experience that night sitting ringside there.
Certainly from an accounting point of view, but as well from a fight official point of view, he was involved in many other championship fights before. And he kept, as it is customary, a WBA master score sheet which used as an input the same information as the District of Columbia Boxing Commission used for their scorecard. It’s basically the individual per rounds score slips, which are collected from the referee and then supposed to be given to the Commission.
So the Commission keeps the master score sheet, so does the WBA, and so does the IBF. Therefore the results would be the same, right, because they all use the same information. Well shockingly it was not, it was different. It was the same for the scorecard of Nelson Vasquez, who had it for Khan, and it was the same for Valerie Dorsett, who had it for Peterson, but somehow George Hill’s card had it a draw. Therefore the WBA showed on their card that the fight was a draw.
Dave Itskowitch, our Chief Operating Officer and certainly one of the most honest and straight-forward people I have ever met, and all of those, those of you who know him, certainly would agree with me. He actually saw the card, the official WBA card with his own eyes right after the fight. And the WBA’s not disputing that the WBA card is different from the official, ah, from the official card.
Now what happened with the IBF card, with the IBF master score card? It was gone after the fight. Funny enough, it disappeared. When I talked to Lindsey Tucker on Monday morning, Lindsey Tucker is the IBF official, I asked him what happened, he said that the IBF supervisor who was there for the fight told him that it disappeared, that it seems to him that the District of Columbia took it while he was in the ring presenting Peterson with the belt.
Then suddenly two days ago, an IBF scorecard appeared. It looks as it was made up after the fact, no question about it or was made about, yeah, two days. The printing was way too neat and consistent, not consistent with what usually a scorecard looks like. So, we’re not, we’re just, as I said before, we’re just outlining the facts here. Ah, there clearly is some smoke as it relates to the scorecards and you know the old saying, where there is smoke there is fire.
Now let’s move on to the points deductions. There are serious issues with these point deductions. First of all there were clearly no fouls. Even Lamont Peterson acknowledged in the post-fight interview that the push, that the push-off from Amir did not bother him at all.
There are no provisions in the rules related to pushing. In fact the uniform rules of the Association of Boxing Commission do not mention pushing or even excessive pushing as a foul. Even fellow referees, some of the veterans in the sport and they never; believe me, they never second guess a colleagues performance, had issue with referee Cooper’s point deductions and the way he handled that fight.
Several news stories to that effect were published in the last few days and you can read about outspoken comments from fellow referees. There was clearly no basis for one point and certainly, absolutely none for two-point deductions. The fact is that the ref performed one of the worst cases of home cooking I have ever seen. The fact is that Amir complained during the fight about the excessive and continued use of the head by Peterson and coming in low, head first. The ref realized that and warned Peterson.
Let me just briefly walk you through the fight at the relevant warnings from the ref to Peterson, and again, I’m not making this stuff up. You guys can go and watch the tape yourself if you don’t believe me. Rounds two, referee warned three times, keep your head up, keep your head up. Round four, one warning; get your head up. Round five; keep your head up, son. Round six, five of the rounds the ref warned Barry Hunter; anymore of that and I will take a point away. He went on to warn him two more times in that round six.
At 2:04 seconds remaining, Amir looked at the ref and complained about Peterson’s head. Round eight, again keep your head up Peterson, one warning. Round 10, 2:20, 2:44 seconds remaining, Amir looks up and again complains about the low blow. Three more warnings; get your head off him. Let go, keep your head off him, keep your head up. Round 11, two more warnings, another complaint from Amir at the close of the round. Twelfth round; ah, again one warning; break, keep your head up. And again Amir complained about the Peterson head.
So the inconsistency, the inconsistency is absolutely shocking. The ref didn’t deduct any points, but if this is not home cooking I don’t know what is. It’s clear, and I mean very clear, that after the first round that Amir was fighting not one, but two people in the ring. Now again, you can’t blame Peterson for that, and we’re not blaming Peterson, has nothing to do with Peterson.
The fact is the ref didn’t do his job, worse, he did a shitty job. Now people make mistakes, and I believe in giving them an opportunity to correct the situation. These points are razor fact, we don’t make them up. They’re clear and unquestionable facts. This decision has to be corrected. I hope that they were just honest mistakes and the truth will prevail and the result be corrected. Anything but, would be another black eye, for the sports, the sanction organization and the District of Columbia.
Now for those people who have suggested; why did you go to the guy’s hometown, why did they go to Washington? We would never take a fight there. You know you have these Sunday morning quarterbacks voicing and making these kinds of comments.
Well, let me start by stating that if in fact somebody cannot get a fair decision in our nation’s capital, then we have a much bigger problem, a problem which is not fixed by simply ignoring it or not going back there for another 20 years or so. The problem and the issue has to be addressed. It has to be addressed by the District of Columbia Boxing Commission, as well as by the IBF and the WBA.
I refuse to believe that fighters cannot get a fair shake in Washington, D.C. It’s not fair to the great fans of Washington, which came out in huge numbers and to the sport. This is exactly why we have filed the appeal with the Commission and with the two sanctioning organizations. They have an opportunity and an obligation to do the right thing.
I sure hope that for the sake of the fans and the sport that they will do the right thing, which is to overturn the decision and, or order, at least, at worst, order an immediate rematch. By the way, I got an update; we have filed these appeals and we got an update for the IBF and the WBA will order an appeal to happen in the beginning of January, I think it’s January 18th and 19th, uh, in New York.
Now talking about doing the right thing. Lamont Peterson and his team have an opportunity as well, to do the right thing. They agreed after the fight that they would do a rematch. They told the HBO announcers and fight fans around the world that they have no problem doing the rematch next.
I personally talked to Team Peterson right after the fight and Barry Hunter told me the same. No issues, no problem to do the rematch, that it was a pleasure to work with us and that they have no problem giving Amir the rematch. I understand that, Lamont mentioned that to Amir as well, even when they were sitting next, next, next to each other at the hospital getting checked up after the fight.
I went immediately to work and was able to secure May 19th from Staple Center in Los Angeles. Not in Washington, not in the United Kingdom, on mutual grounds; a date, a date which will give both fighters enough time to get ready and to do it again. I talked to Team Peterson subsequently and made them a seven figure offer and we are waiting to hear back from them. Again, this will be a much anticipated fight, this is the fight, fight fans, the boxing world sports fans want to see, so let’s get it done again.
Again, very, very important that, and very clear here, this is not about sour grapes, it’s not attacking Lamont Peterson any way or shape, it comes back to like Lamont and his team, there’s nothing, we don’t want to take anything away from him, but have a setback, what we want is we want, we want fairness and we believe that that’s the right thing to do to get the fight going again.
Yes, thank you, Richard. You know I watched the fight and I’ve seen a few things in the fight I wasn’t happy about. Well probably about five times I saw the fight and, there are a lot of warnings in there and stuff and the head and everything and I did tell the referee at times, well it seemed to me that there was no one there to help me.
I’m not taking anything away from Lamont Peterson. He fought a great performance and he was strong and he was, he put on, you have to do what you do. You know he stuck to his game plan and we spoke after the fight and him and his team were very respectful. But I think I deserve a fair chance of a fair fight somewhere neutral and I’m willing to come back to the U.S. and put a fight on there, but never in Washington again.
You know, I think it’s just people that are going to be very disappointed, especially the fans in Washington because we brought the fight in the Capital, we brought boxing back there with that performance, and with the unfair judging and unfair referee. I think it just puts boxing on a low.
But, like I said, overall it was a great fight and I hope Lamont Peterson does give me the rematch like he did say he’s going to give me, and the rematch I think I deserve and, you know, I know definitely if the fight, if the fight was judged and refereed fairly, I know I’ll still be the world champion and, you know, I really think I was just judged unfairly.
I mean every time I watch the fight because the time in the fight where you know about the referee making mistakes and he’s not on my side. But I mean you have to put these things behind you and I just hope that the Commission and also the IBF and the WBA will watch this and hopefully see my complaint and they come back and hopefully fix all this. So it’s in the hands of the WBC.
I saw it over the air, and the IBF, and also the Commission, so let’s see where we go from there. And I’ll go out and by trying my very best to get this solved. Also my team have been trying very very hard to get this sorted out. But you know it’s taking time and I’m just going to stay focused and, you know, overall it was a great fight. I mean one of the best fights of the year, and everywhere I’ve been going and everywhere I’ve been going in England, everyone’s been saying I got robbed. Not even in England, but everywhere I went in the Washington people were saying I got robbed even his own fans.
They said look, there were people in Washington saying look, you come to D.C. and we robbed you. You know, that’s what they’re saying, but you know, end of the day all I want is a fair fight. I mean, you know, I want a rematch just to prove to the world I wasn’t treated fairly and off we go from there.
I’m sure Lamont Peterson has watched the fight as well and he understands and now maybe that’s the reason he’s not coming back and he’s not returning calls to Golden Boy Promotions about the rematch. But I think, you know, the IBF and the WBA should order a rematch in my opinion, and also look at the fight the way it was, the referee. So let’s just see where we go from here and overall it was a great performance from Lamont Peterson also.
I mean I tried, I put on a good performance as well, we both were, you know, we both were happy with it, the way we fought and everything, but it was just the referee and the judges who spoiled a great night of boxing. So, you know, I don’t know if there’s going to be a fight in D.C. again. I hope there is, because I hope they do fix the judging and the referring, but let’s just see where we go from there.