The Biggest Disappointments in Boxing in 2012
Though these setbacks didn't cripple the sport or spark more premature boxing obituaries that the media appear to love writing every other week, they still leave boxing with plenty of room for improvement.
Here's a look at the biggest disappointments in boxing over the course of 2012.
5. Through Tragedy and Upsets, Canelo Remains Untested
It's easy to criticize Saul "Canelo" Alvarez, a 22-year-old untested world champ in the 154-pound division, one of the hottest banks of talent available.
Alvarez and his promoter Golden Boy tried to alleviate this problem this past September by pitting the young warrior against Paul Williams, a big, long-limbed veteran who unfortunately suffered a career-ending motorcycle crash.
Then they tried to line up James Kirkland, who would go on to injure his shoulder and have financial concerns that ended the fight.
Finally, Canelo was set to face Victor Ortiz, but the young Mexican warrior got his jaw broken against junior welterweight Josesito Lopez, who beat Ortiz to earn the shot against Alvarez.
Alvarez blew past Lopez as expected, and now we hope that the young redhead will be tested on May 4, 2013 when he's expected back in the ring.
Fellow undefeated champ Austin Trout could be next.
4. Mayweather Jail Sentence
After serving two months in jail in June and July, Floyd Mayweather spent the rest of 2012 plotting and planning for 2013 while getting back into fighting shape.
He turns 36 in February. After fighting once a year for the part four years, it'll be nice to see if one of the best fighters of the modern era can actually squeeze two fights into 2013 as has been widely reported.
3. Cancelled Rematches Due to Positive Drug Tests
After producing two of the best fights of the past five years, Andre Berto was set to fight Victor Ortiz and Lamont Peterson was to defend the junior welterweight titles against Amir Khan in an attempt to replicate the magic both fights created the first time.
In both fights, the American former champions tested positive for banned substances. Berto and Peterson would lose out on big money matches, create a cloud over their name and cause the cancellation of two of the most anticipated fights of 2012.
Recent news reported by the BBC has suggested the tests may be the result of contamination and accidental use rather than intentional doping.
Here's hoping we see at least one of these rematches next year.
2. Marquez Had to Knock Pacquiao out to Finally Win
Juan Manuel Marquez is one of the most underrated Mexican boxers of all time. He arguably defeated Manny Pacquiao three times before, only to be robbed of the decision each and every time.
Marquez then delivered the knockout performance of his career when he ended his rivalry with Pacquiao with a bang in Round 6 of the fourth bout. A perfectly timed right hand left the Filipino down and out.
It's a shame such a brutal knockout had to be delivered in order for Marquez to win.
Had the fight continued for six more rounds, I'm confident Marquez would have outboxed Pacquiao—and then Marquez would have lost another controversial decision.
1. Pacquiao Robbed by Bradley
Manny Pacquiao won. The official scorecards may read differently in the Pacquiao vs. Timothy Bradley fight, but according to the opinion of virtually the entire world, Bradley lost.
The fact that such a robbery could happen to such a big star on the biggest stage in boxing at the MGM Grand is not a good thing for the sport.
It means that fans who spent $60 for the event felt conned out of their money—the end result contradicted everything they saw that night.
Here's to hoping for a rematch and that Pacquiao emulates Marquez and leaves the decision out of the judges' hands next time.