It's been more than a day now, and Manny Pacquiao still lost to Tim Bradley. That's the beauty of boxing, though. It never occurred to anybody to correct this little fightjacking because, well, because it's boxing. In a world filled with guilty pleasures, there seems to be very little guilt over pleasures of thievery, even when the thievery is as devoid of pleasure as this.
But you know who we didn't hear from? The replay radicals. The ones who stump loudly and persistently for technology to help unknot the thorniest problems in sports. The ones who savage baseball for being so slow to embrace the new world, and grouse about basketball and football for not being forward-thinking enough in this area.
And we have no particular complaint with them. It's a position, and they're entitled to it.
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But in a year where the officiating is taking more of a beating than usual, this was easily the worst judgment of all because A.) it involved two people rather than one, B.) it was more blatantly wrong than all the others, and C.) it wasn't a split-second judgment but one that took 55 minutes to complete, from first punch through final tabulation with 11 minutes of ring girl interludes thrown in the middle.
Nothing else comes close to this one. Whether you hate Joey Crawford or Jim Joyce or Ed Hochuli or Dan O'Halloran or Tim Higgins or Ron Cherry or Howard Webb (pick your guy, pick your sport, we don't care), they are all as infallible as the laws of physics by comparison.
So where was the replay reform crowd on this one? Not interested. The worst performance by an official or judge(s) all year by a light year or so, and not one cry to go back to the tape and intervene.
One can only presume they expect boxing to be so essentially rancid that even replay won't help. Maybe they think that the problem with boxing judges isn't the lack of replay, but the introduction of pre-play (as in results mandated from on high in advance, if you know what we mean, and we think you do). Or maybe they figure that boxing isn't important enough -- that are so few fights anyone cares about that a laughable judgment now and then won't make that much difference.
Or maybe they believe out-and-out brigandry on such a level adds to the sport's few charms. That robbery is just part of the landscape and therefore replay is not really helpful to enhance one's enjoyment of the event.
It is true that boxing experts and fans shifted quickly from "THIS IS THE WORST DECISION SINCE HEROD NO-CALLED THE CRUCIFIXION!" to "WHEN'S THE REMATCH, AND HOW DOES THIS AFFECT FLOYD MAYWEATHER?" It is true that Pacquiao, having killed the better part of an hour beating part of the hell out of Bradley took the loss with disturbing equanimity. And while it is true that a lot of people said this decision would kill boxing, they change their tune quickly enough when they realize this decision IS boxing.
In short, they coped better with the injustice than football, baseball, soccer or hockey or college sports fans. They moved right to the "What's new?" and then "What's next?" stages without missing much of a beat.
Still, a principle is a principle, and if the human element is so derided in other sports, why would it not be here? I mean, there are few things as essentially human (as opposed to humane) as a fist driven halfway through someone else's nose.
So maybe the problem here isn't replay at all, with all due deference to the replay lobby, but about culture. You assume most sports are on the up-and-up (despite, say, the Black Sox, or Tim Donaghy, or the tales of betting spreads surrounding the 1958 NFL Championship, or the officiating in the Canada-Soviet Series in 1972, or every Olympics, or the periodic match-fixing scandals in Italy, or ... ), so those should have replay.
But you assume boxing is corrupt on the basis of it always having been corrupt and you don't want to waste the technology. Or your energy, apparently.
OK, then. As long as we know what we're talking about then. Replay is mandatory for the stuff you care about, but for the other stuff ... meh. We get it now.