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Full Version: My Top 5 Problems With "Linear" Boxing Champions
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Jack 1000
1.) If you went by a linear champion code only and no alphabet federations, Shannon Briggs would have been a world champion among boxings' elite heavyweights: ........UGGHHH.

2.) Linear champ doesn't mean anything anymore: They hasn't since the mid 70's, because it's become an American popularity contest, spurred on by a biased USA media who hates the belts. There's no power or policy as to when to defend a RING belt. There's no power or policy to strip a champion of a ring belt. Nowadays, you can have multiple champs in the same weight class with strong appeal for ABC unification. But RING can't force unifications. (Well, the alphabet federations can't force them either.) But at least two-four XYZ belt holders can unify IN THE BOXING RING. You can hold a ring belt, sit on your ass with it, and not do anything with it.......EVER. At least the alphabet champs are fighting the contenders and unifications can still happen, they are fun to see.

3.) One champion per division creates monopolies on the sport: You could get a Don King, Bob Arum, or Delahoya like what happened with Ring to come in and say "only my fighters are going to be contenders and compete for Ring belts." That's what King did in the 70's with his rigging of the Ring ratings.

4.) The smaller worldwide fighters without strong promoter leadership in other countries like and in some cases worship their alphabet belts: You can't just be "Mr. USA we are ethnocentric to the rest of the boxing world. We only recognize Ring belts and not alphabet titles, so you know what Mr. XYZ light-flyweight champion, your belt doesn't mean fucking shit." The lesser weight guys may have worked hard for those titles, and it's not fair to take a championship status away from them.

5.) What the boxing world may like and what is are two different things: But sorry Teddy Atlas, you can and will NEVER be able to put forth a national commission for boxing on a world wide internationally and globally represented sport. Boxing is not inherently structured like football, baseball, or basketball where American domination works. It's too globalized and international. In the 30's-70's, you could lump boxing into a nice 8 weight division, Madison Square Garden ring, 15-round title fight package many times over. Today you have competing writers for Internet sites that are doing their OWN ratings! Talk about confusing!

Historically, boxing and politics were simpler to deal with than today. But you still had corruption from the mob, other promoters, and crappy judging from time to time. That's build into boxing's inherent structure. Favoritism for certain athletes can be transcended to ALL sports, not just boxing. Everyone wants to lump all of this on King, Arum, and Warren, whenever there is a bad decision. But bad decisions were happening in boxing long before these guys were even born and will continue from time to time after they have died. It's built into the system.

Back to the alphabet verses Ring champion issue, I would have to ask, what is better? An alphabet champion who works his way up the rankings with exciting wins to get a title shot, or a fighter who holds a Ring belt just because their staff of writers think he is a "popular" fighter to American audiences? Sometimes Ring has awarded fighters belts for LOSING. (They gave their belt to Vitali Klitschko for losing to Lewis.) They represented Corrie Sanders as a top challenger who was a part time golf player.

Ring USED to be about fistic merit. But that was a LONG time ago. Now it's American public opinion, and soon it could be Delahoya's millions that is determining their champions and contenders. That's not what boxing should be about.

Good post, Jack.

Another problem with single champions is that modern fighters just don't fight often enough. Look at any division, and there are probably five or six guys who are deserving of a title shot.

Now with one champion only fighting once or twice a year. who is going to get the shot? Answer: whoever makes the most money.

This means that in the welterweight division, you'd see Joshua Clottey, Kermit Cintron, Paul Williams and Antonio Margarito continually passed over in favour of Arturo Gatti, Ricky Hatton and other less deserving guys who would generate top dollar for the champion to defend against.

If there was one champion, we'd never have heard of Winky Wright, Bernard Hopkins or any other of the world's best fighters who only got the chance to be where they are now because at one stage they held alphabet belts. Would Shane Mosley or Tito Trinidad have ever fought them if they didn't own IBF belts?

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