With many writers and fans naming last Friday’s Rances Barthelemy-Arash Usmanee bout as the first robbery decision of 2013, Barthelemy’s promoter Leon Margules has gone public to confront allegations of corruption.
Accusing Friday Night Fights commentary team of Teddy Atlas and Joe Tessitore of exhibiting a biased narrative over the bout, Margules says a second viewing of the fight may yield different opinions.
“Some internet writers from some reputable sites have been claiming Usmanee was robbed and that this was a ‘corrupt’ and ‘hometown’ decision and to them I say: Before you try to sully the reputations of some long-time boxing people, watch it again closely without the commentary and decide for yourselves,” said Margules.
The fight was scored a unanimous decision for Barthelemy by verdicts of 116-112 twice and 115-113 despite Usmanee appearing to control the fight with more accurate punching and a higher punch output after struggling with Barthelemy’s length and power in the first two rounds. While Margules admitted the fight was close, he did not see the Usmanee’s offense as “effective.”
“You’ve got Usmanee doing more work, but not really being effective and you’ve got Rances picking his opportunities to land the harder, cleaner blows,” argued Margules. “Three experienced judges with solid reputations decided in the majority of the rounds, Rances was more effective. It’s that simple.”
“They aren’t corrupt for making that call. Watch the fight again. Even if you don’t agree, you can see how they could have leaned that way. It’s not a travesty of justice that Rances won this fight. Far from it. In my opinion, he deserved to win.”
Margules also cited Usmanee’s manager, Douggy Berneche, as a prominent individual from the opposing camp that admitted defeat before the scores were announced.
At press time, Barthelemy’s camp has not ruled out an eventual rematch.
I guess if I turn the sound off, Barthelemy’s punches will suddenly become more powerful and Usmanee’s accuracy, defense and body punching will all suddenly disappear. There is no cleaning this up with the standard “it was a close fight” and the rounds “could’ve gone either way.” Bullshit. I suggest Margules watch the fight again himself.