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Boxing's Worst Decisions of All Time

Updated on May 2, 2016

Robberies in Prizefighting

Pernell Whitaker gets a draw with J.C. Superstar in a bout that Sweet Pea clearly won.  Whitaker was a master defensive wizard.
Pernell Whitaker gets a draw with J.C. Superstar in a bout that Sweet Pea clearly won. Whitaker was a master defensive wizard. | Source
Sugar Ray Leonard raises Tommy Hearns hand in controversial draw. The pair fought twice with Leonard winning once and the two boxing to a draw in the rematch.
Sugar Ray Leonard raises Tommy Hearns hand in controversial draw. The pair fought twice with Leonard winning once and the two boxing to a draw in the rematch. | Source
Evander Holyfield and Lennox Lewis fight to a Bogus Draw in their first bout.
Evander Holyfield and Lennox Lewis fight to a Bogus Draw in their first bout. | Source
Big George got ripped off when Shannon Briggs is awarded a decision in a bout that Foreman won at least 8 or 9 rounds.
Big George got ripped off when Shannon Briggs is awarded a decision in a bout that Foreman won at least 8 or 9 rounds. | Source
Joe Louis fought against Jersey Joe Walcott and Walcott clearly won more of the 15 rounds but Louis somehow is declared the winner.
Joe Louis fought against Jersey Joe Walcott and Walcott clearly won more of the 15 rounds but Louis somehow is declared the winner. | Source

Who Won?

Who do you think won the second Sugar Ray Leonard and Tommy Hearns fight?

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Birthplace of Lennox Lewis

Horrid Decisions

Unfortunately, boxing has had more than it's fair share of bad decisions. The ones on the list below leave a worse stink than some of the others. Hopefully, this list will not continue to grow.

1. Pernell Whitaker vs. Jose Luis Ramirez (1988) Sweet Pea won all twelve rounds without a doubt but, somehow lost a decision on the scorecards, a true embarrassment in boxing. Whitaker landed jabs, hooks and body shots all night. Eventually, Whitaker got a rematch and dominated him again but got the credit the second time. Ramirez was literally hitting elbows, gloves and air all night with his shots in both bouts. Whitaker clowned his foe in both matches only to be crapped on the first time.

2. Pernell Whitaker vs. Julio Cesar Chavez (1993) Once again, Whitaker is robbed as he wins at least nine rounds (ten, in my opinion) but, somehow the judges in San Antonio, Texas ruled the somewhat one sided bout a draw. Sweet Pea landed to the body and head at will and he landed in combination. Meanwhile, Chavez lunged and could rarely even land one punch at a time cleanly. Chavez truly tried but like Ramirez he found air and gloves when he punched and even when he did have a good moment then Whitaker would come back and have a much better moment.

3. George Foreman vs. Shannon Briggs (1997) Foreman easily dominated Briggs with his pole jab and strait right. Briggs was schooled by the old man losing eight out of the twelve on my card but, the judges screwed Big George and he never fought again. Briggs, who has lots of power, fought timid and as a result George beat him with the stick all night but the three blind mice did not see it that way. Briggs was never the aggressor and he never landed any big punches during the bout.

4. Tommy Hearns vs. Sugar Ray Leonard 2 (1989) Leonard fought well in spots but, lost seven rounds on my card and won five. The problem is that the Hit man knocked down Sugar Ray twice in the bout which should have assured Hearns a victory but he had to settle for a ridiculous draw. Hearns out boxed and out fought Leonard for the majority of the heats.

5. Lennox Lewis vs. Evander Holyfield 1 (1999) Holyfield hurt Lewis bad in round three but, from round 4 through twelve although competitive Holyfield could not reach Lewis. Although the match was declared a draw, everyone knew the Brit handily won that fight.

6. Larry Holmes vs. Michael Spinks 2 (1985) Holmes lost a close decision in their first fight but, he was robbed for sure in the rematch. Spinks landed light punches the whole fight other than his jab while Holmes landed crisp jabs and big rights that shook Spinks to the core. Spinks was repeatedly rocks by right hands yet managed to win another close decision. (For the record I thought Larry Holmes won both bouts).

7. Jersey Joe Walcott vs. Joe Louis 1 (1947) Walcott put all his guile and skills on display for his finest performance ever and he gets really robbed. Walcott dropped Louis in Round 1, dominated the slower Louis in Round 2 and Round 3 and then in Round 4 he dropped The Brown Bomber again. Although Louis had his moments, I truly believe that it's impossible to give him more than seven out of the fifteen rounds and that's not mentioning two 10-8 rounds. B.S. Split decision for Louis.

8. Manny Pacquiao vs. Timothy Bradley (2012) Desert Storm definitely fought his heart out and hung in their for all twelve rounds but, the fact is Bradley ran and played pitty pat while the Pacman was the effective aggressor in almost every round. Simple.

9. Erislandy Lara vs. Paul Williams (2011) Williams through shots all night more than Lara in fact but, he missed a lot of them. Lara for his part was more economical with his shots but his right hands wobbled Paul all night. It was not the worst I ever seen but it was one of them.

10. Felix Sturm vs Oscar De La Hoya (2004) Sturm was an unknown and De La Hoya was on the cusp of fighting for the middleweight crown. The Golden Boy pounded Sturm to the body and landed his fair share of hooks but, Sturm out jabbed him, out punched him and busted up De La Hoya's face. It was not enough as Oscar escaped what should have been defeat.

Larry Holmes vs. Michael Spinks (Second Bout)

Larry Holmes lost two close and controversial bouts to Michael Spinks especially the second fight.
Larry Holmes lost two close and controversial bouts to Michael Spinks especially the second fight. | Source

Where Did They Fight?


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Boxers with Great Ring Generalship

Pernell whitaker
Floyd Mayweather, Jr.
Sugar Ray Robinson
Sugar Ray Leonard
Willie Pep
Gene Tunney
Muhammad Ali
Benny Leonard
Ricardo Lopez
 
Salvador Sanchez
 

Leonard vs. Hearns 2

Boxing Needs To Address Judges

Boxing needs to take a stand against judges who render pathetic decisions because it truly hurts this wonderful sport. Take the ringside judges to the side and question them as to what they were watching. Maybe give them some longer, more advanced training classes.

© 2012 Buster Johnson

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      Dr 3 years ago

      Spinks won easily in the first fight with Holmes.10 rounds to 5.Holmes was frozen in confusion in the first fight.In the rematch,spinks dominated from the middle rounds on.Holmes was much better in the rematch,but from the 5th round on,spinks hit Holmes at will.Holmes ran out of gas,he has only himself to blame for trying for an early ko.

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      Buster Johnson 3 years ago from Alabama

      Wow, your the first person I have ever heard say Spinks won the rematch. Both bouts were very close.

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      Kelco 2 years ago

      To the person that said Spinx easily won the first fight. It's not good to lie. It's always about personal integrity!!! Give it up!!!! You know very well Holmes won both fights. I was never a Holmes fan, but at least I have enough integrity to tell the truth!!! Don't you know you're in the VAST minority. That first bout was all about saving Marciano's undefeated record!!!!! So,give it up!!!

    • profile image

      Kelco - Dear Hub Author - How about some fight footage and info concerning the late Alexis Arguillo. He was a boxing icon. 2 years ago

      To the person that said Spinx easily won the first fight. It's not good to lie. It's always about personal integrity!!! Give it up!!!! You know very well Holmes won both fights. I was never a Holmes fan, but at least I have enough integrity to tell the truth!!! Don't you know you're in the VAST minority. That first bout was all about saving Marciano's undefeated record!!!!! So,give it up!!!

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      Benito 9 months ago

      Roberto Durán in june 1996 was got robbed over Camacho.

      This was also a very bad desicion.

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