How to Make the Casual Sports Fan Take Boxing Titles Even Less Seriously: Holyfield-Botha

I really wanted my first post of 2010 to be a positive one.

There's a lot to look forward to, after all. The two best pound-for-pound boxers in the world will probably get their differences irnoed out at some point, the Super Six World Boxing Classic is rolling on, and we're just a few weeks away from a stellar start to the 2010 season on HBO when Shane Mosley and Andre Berto collide.

Yes, we boxing fans should be plenty excited. But then there's this: Evander Holyfield and Francois Botha fighting for the WBF heavyweight title.

Now understand that I'm not mad at Holyfield. Over the past few years, my attitude about older fighters is if they want to keep fighting, and they think anyone will care, then God bless them. It's ultimately his decision.

I am angry about ESPN deciding it was worthy of being splashed across the crawl during all of the college football bowl games. Real boxing fans know the WBF is not a "real" sanctioning body, but the casual sports fan doesn't, making it seem like it was an actual world title fight.

It's bad enough trying to explain to my friends who don't follow boxing regularly why there are four semi-legitimate organizations with title belts, and now I have to tell them that this isn't one of them. It's this kind of crap that makes boxing seem like a joke to outside observers a lot of times.

So, yeah, it would be bad to have a 47-year old Real Deal battling for a belt that meant something (assuming that's not oxymoronic), but this is, in some ways, even worse. A hearty boo goes to ESPN for this one, and I hope I don't have to post about stuff like this for the rest of the year.

Posted by The Franchise

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