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He Should Have Known Better

De La Hoya only has himself to blame for losing

By El Chavo
Published on LatinoLA: September 28, 2003


He Should Have Known Better


?Orale, Raza! How's it going out in the barrio?

Well, I know that it's been a while since I have made my appearance on LatinoLA.com, but you know how it gets when you have the rent to pay, the car payments to make, and having to make enough cash to buy the carne asada for the weekend pachangas. But when I read what Al Carlos Hernandez had to say about the De La Hoya vs. Mosley fight ("It's a Rip" at http://latinola.com/story.php?story=1282) I felt that I needed to say some words, too.

I gotta give it up to Mr. Hernandez, as I was just as surprised about the fight result in the De La Hoya vs. Mosley fight as he was. But I don't put the blame on Las Vegas, the judges, or any of those payaso announcers that are always onscreen during the HBO bouts. I put the blame solely on Oscar De La Hoya himself.

OK, I know that a chingo of you are thinking "?Este guey esta loco!" But sit back, relax, let the hot tamales settle in, and read what I have to say as to why I feel that De La Hoya has nobody to blame for losing his title than himself.

Just as Mr. Hernandez wrote, within the last few years, companies like the WWF have grown to become more respectable than professional boxing. You can watch any Pay-Per-View wrestling event and come to expect one of the fighter's managers to pull some chain from under the ring and hit the opposing fighter in the face with it while the referee isn't looking. We expect stuff like that to occur on the WWF.

The sad reality is that in boxing, we have grown to expect such tarugadas to take place, but not from the fighters or the managers, but from the judges. I honestly can't remember the last boxing match that I saw that went the distance where the decision came out the way we all expected it to. It just seems so appropriate that boxing events take place in Las Vegas, as the biggest gamble of that weekend is the one placed by both fighters when they decide to go the distance and put their faith in three people whose decision is as predictable as the flip of a coin.

De La Hoya should know about that better than anybody, and it hits me as a shock that he hasn't learned anything from the fight that broke his flawless record.

September 18, 1999 was the day that De La Hoya should have learned that if you want a fight to come out the way you want it to, don't trust in the judges.

Finish the job off yourself.

Felix Trinidad ended up leaving the ring as the IBF and WBC Champion, having won a split decision over Oscar De La Hoya in a fight that many of us out in the real world felt De La Hoya had won. Having what many of us thought was a unsurpassable lead going into the late rounds, he decided to dance around the ring, feeling that he needed to protect his lead so that he could score a victory on the score cards. The end result was a split decision, with one of the judges scoring it a draw at 114-114, with two other judges giving it to Trinidad at 115-113 and 115-114. Nine months later, he was to suffer his second defeat ever, also by decision, to none other than "Sugar" Shane Mosley.

Coming into what is considered the most important fight of his career, De La Hoya came into the MGM Grand knowing that he had to make sure to score a victory against Shane Mosley, one of only two fighters in his illustrious career to have scored a victory over him. He went into the fight telling the world that if he lost, he would hang up the gloves forever and retire from the sport of boxing. De La Hoya began the fight strong in the early parts of the fight, at times showing dominance over Mosley with the use of his jab and his mobility throughout the ring.

But towards the late rounds, De La Hoya's inability to bring down Mosley proved fatal, as it sent the bout's faith once again to the will of the judges. History was to repeat itself as De La Hoya lost another close fight by decision.

This defeat makes it three losses that De La Hoya has suffered at the hands of the judges. You figure that by now, he would know better and feel that if he wanted to score a definitive victory, he would have to rely on his own two fists. I don't know if we'll ever see him return to the boxing ring, but if he decides to come back, he better make sure that the outcome of the match happens in the ring, and not in the cards.

Maybe he can get Bob Arum to get a steel chair and hit Don King over the head with it. At least this way, boxing can once again be as reputable as the WWF.






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