In Manchester, El Paso and the Philippines – boxing was back hitting the right notes
22:58 GMT, 18 June 2012
No doubt to the surprise of many in the outside world, boxing matches took place as normal and according to schedule at the weekend.
Scott Quigg and Rendall Munroe ended up with a technical draw, rather than the interim WBA super-bantamweight belt round one of their waists, at a packed Manchester Velodrome.
An accidental clash of heads in the third round gashed Munroe above an eye, leaving him unable to continue and both men agreeing to a rematch.
First blood: Rendall Munroe suffered a cut after a clash with Scott Quigg
More from Jeff Powell…
EXCLUSIVE: Credit to Froch but I WILL beat him again, warns unbeaten rival Ward
Jeff Powell: Jailed Mayweather will miss opportunity to scout arch-rival Pacquiao
Jeff Powell: Khan demands drugs cheat Peterson is banned for life
Jeff Powell: Price the best value to be our next heavyweight hero like Lewis
Jeff Powell: The Warren paradox: Supporting Haye v Chisora is ugly… but acceptable as a one-off
Jeff Powell: It's a dog's life! Ricky blasts Sky's reluctance to back Hatton Promotions
Jeff Powell: British boxing returns to its spiritual home… and about time too
Jeff Powell: Leonard v Hagler – 25 years later and the great debate rages on
VIEW FULL ARCHIVE
In El Paso, Texas, Julio Cesar Chavez Jnr successfully defended his WBC world middleweight title by stopping 'Irish' Andy Lee in the seventh round, thereby setting up a mouthwatering September showdown with linear champion Sergio Martinez.
As Mark Twain would have said, it seems that reports of the death of pugilism have been exaggerated.
Boxing's obituaries notices were posted after Manny Pacquiao was subjected to the biggest robbery in Las Vegas since the Ocean's 11 movie.
But then they usually are when the judges at ringside get it so wrong that they might have been standing outside the building.
So should football be shut down when the referee fails to award an obvious penalty
The abolitionists scream 'fix' whenever there is a furore in boxing but what we saw in Vegas was nothing better or worse than incompetence.
Football cries out for goal-line technology but there is no such remedy in the prize ring.
Scoring fights is a question of judgement, often subjective, while to err is human.
Ironically, it may be just as well that there is no such hi-tech remedy for the hard old game. Controversy fuels public interest.
Pacquiao returned home to his familiar hero's welcome in the Philippines, even though the only eight-division world champion was adjudged to have lost for the first time in seven years.
Same again: Scott Quigg (left) and Rendall Munroe are facing a rematch
And while the man who was supposed to have beaten him, American Tim Bradley, argued that all we critics of that decision should watch a video replay with the pro-Pacquiao commentary turned off, the PacMan took it with a dignified shrug.
A conspicuously reborn Catholic, Pacquiao led his fans and fellow worshipers in prayers of acceptance for a verdict denounced, also, by 91 per cent of the respondents to an HBO network poll in America.
Then, even as he was being showered with confetti by well-wishers in Manilla, he urged the crowds to cut short the tributes and join him in helping the thousands of families in his home province of Sarangani who have been made homeless by devastating floods.
The rematch can wait while this Congressman attends to humanitarian business.
Big winner: Julio Cesar Chavez Jr successfully defended his title at the weekend
But when it does take place be sure the arena will be sold out, with the pay-TV sales going through the roof. Revenge is a dish best tasted at the box office.
Meanwhile, the show goes on, even widening its appeal as it does so.
The west country, more specifically Clevedon in Somerset, will be the unusual venue for a fairly big fight when British heavyweight hope Tyson Fury returns to action on July 7.
The opponent will be New York's Italian Stallion, Vinny Maddalone.
Fury will be hoping to move closer to a world title clash with one of the Klitschkos, as will his domestic rival David Price in a bout to be announced shortly.
Nothing could be better timed to restore dignity to boxing than the London Olympics.
Helping hands: Filipino boxer Manny Pacquiao and his mum Dionisia greet residents affected by flashfloods in Glan, Sarangani province
Britain – for whom Amir Khan was the only gloved representative in Athens eight years ago – has 10 fighters competing in the 2012 Games, seven men and three women.
No fewer than seven of them are expected to be among the top three seeds in their weight classes.
But just as we can anticipate medals, so it is certain there will be disputes arising from the even more convoluted amateur scoring system.
Bring It on.
Our old friend controversy is expected to fill West Ham's football ground on July 14 for the dubious financial rewarding of David Haye and Dereck Chisora for their shameful brawl at a media conference in Munich.
If that not-so-big heavyweight fight cum faux-grudge match can't kill the game, nothing can.
Maybe, instead of trying to move forward into a future of some complex scoring technology, boxing should go back to the brutal days of the fight to the finish.
Jail means jail for Mayweather
Floyd Mayweather, having been given a token three-month sentence for battering his ex-girlfriend in front of their children, pleaded for a transfer from prison to house arrest, claiming the food and cramped conditions inside his solitary cell are eroding his fighting fitness.
Presumably he expected the multi-million dollar impact of his fights on the Las Vegas economy to sway this appeal in his favour.
Request: Floyd Mayweather wanted a transfer from prison to house arrest
But this time the judge was having none of it, asking whether he imagined he was being sent to the Four Seasons hotel on the Strip and reminding him that the water in the county jail is clean.
A small victory for justice over pampered celebrity – and no doubt Mr Money will look remarkably healthy when he returns to the ring this autumn.
Teofilo taken too soon
Teofilo Stevenson turned his back on the fortune he could have earned for fighting Muhammad Ali in the 70s by staying amateur, saying he preferred the affection of millions of his fellow Cubans to defection to the US.
Sadly, this triple gold medal-winning Olympian has died at just 60.
He'll be missed: Cuban legend Teofilo Stevenson
Oddly, despite the economic hardship and heavy food, Cubans enjoy a higher-than-American average life expectancy of more than 77.
But add hero-worship celebrity to the cigars and the cuba-libres in Havana and there are casualties.
Stevenson's big heart simply gave out.