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Antonio Margarito – Redemption of the heart

Antonio MargaritoBy By Ibrar Arshad: After a long time I have decided to write an article again. The reason for my absence is the amount of ignorance I was beginning to see in boxing fans on this website, as well as the poor articles that other authors were posting. Sometimes it’s disheartening to see fans of a sport that I so dearly love, overlook values that every boxer has ever laid out in their careers. Unfortunately a lot of boxing fans have become disrespectful to the sport they claim to love. I have read remarks that are hateful, racist and completely unreasonable. It really has become sad.

Sometimes in boxing you witness something that moves you beyond what the sport is about. It touches you beyond just two boxers fighting for a title. As a boxing fan I have always taken a liking to the boxers who fight of courage and heart. They may not be as skilled as the other fighters but its something that is almost supernatural in their toolbox that wins those fights. Science tell us that each human being is capable of producing enough pounds of pressure in their punch, that when striking another human being on the chin, the chin is not physically capable of withstanding that amount of pressure causing your jaw to be pushed back along with your head forcing your spinal chord to fall back pushing you to the ground and on your backside. But we boxing fans know that this can be so true, and yet so untrue. Some boxers can take a punch, whether they see it coming or not, they can take it.

Antonio Margarito on November 13th displayed a performance that defeated my will, my emotions and my sense of humanity. Antonio Margarito prior to his fight with Sugar Shane Mosley was found to have an illegal substance in his hand wraps, prompting the biggest witch-hunt in boxing history. His trainer at the time took the responsibility and Antonio Margarito was given a one year suspension. After he served his time, Margarito had his license rejected in two states before it was given in the state of Texas thanks only because of the proposed fight between him and Pacquiao. We as fight fans watched all this drama unfold from the outside. He fought in Mexico as a tune up fight and we did not think anything of it.

You know when Margarito was given the ban, you know what he done? He put his head down and went to the gym and trained. He trained and trained and trained. Margarito, who like all of us has a family, he has feelings. It’s hard to imagine the way he would look at his wife in the past year or so. It’s hard to imagine how he would face the world once again. It’s hard to imagine how he would meet his fans. But Margarito faced everything. I do not want to imagine how he felt during this period because only he and his wife will ever know. Margarito told us he did not know what was placed in his hand wraps that infamous night. I did not believe him, when Margarito said he had not used anything illegal in his pads in any previous fights. I could not believe him.

He swore that on November 13th he will prove to the world that he is not a cheat.

Margarito was beaten beyond recognition by Manny Pacquiao. He was destroyed. Just take a look at his face after the fight to understand the beating he took by the unbelievable and dazzling Pacquiao. The term ‘warrior’ has officially been over-used in boxing today. Because Margarito has pushed that term beyond human boundaries. In the Fourth round when Manny landed that sickening uppercut, Margarito lost his legs. It was apparent the fight won’t last long. In the sixth round Margarito came back with a rally of his own. Between rounds 7-9 it became hard to watch. Margarito was being pummelled with every ounce of strength Pacquiao had in his body, but Margarito would not let up and would not stop coming forward. A above- average fighter would have not survived that night past the fourth round. After round 9 the thought of feeling sorry for Margarito disappeared. When Margarito was stood in his corner ready to come out for the 9th round, a rush of inspiration grew in my stomach. It became apparent that this man, no matter what was not going to happen, he was not going to fall, and he was not going to raise himself up of the floor anymore. For the many disappointments he has had in his career, the family tragedy’s he has endured, the countless hate he has faced, on this night Antonio Margarito refused to fall.

Margarito’s heart is bigger than any fighter who has ever lived, that’s why you and I will never understand his corners decision not to pull him out. We don’t know what was at stake for Margarito, to see why he had to keep going. Though his face was swollen and cut, you could still see his determination of believing that each second of each round is still a chance for him. What I seen in Margarito on November 13th, is a man who was ready to die in the ring for the very thing that a lot of us have lost and can’t understand… PRIDE. Even in the face of annihilation Antonio Margarito walked forward with his guard up. Even if Margarito can never fight again, I am sure a man like him would never regret his display in the ring that night. Therefore I don’t see why his trainer should. I salute his corner for not pulling Margarito out because though you think your saving him, Margarito’s heart would have been broken. As a human being that is something none of us can bare. Antonio ‘Tijuana Tornado’ Margarito said after the fight ‘I am a Mexican, I would rather die then quit’.

He suffered a fracture in his orbital bone. He has since had a successful operation on it and it has since been said that the first thing he said to the doctors after the treatment was “When can I start to run”.

I believe in Antonio Margarito. If my word doesn’t mean anything, then go ask Manny Pacquiao, because Manny seen in his opponent something he has never seen before and he could do nothing but admire the courage, bravery and heart of Margarito, that’s why he showed mercy in the final round as a sign of respect towards his opponents. Only Warriors recognise Warriors in this way. The Tornado will return.

Thank you Tony and we hope that you have a quick recovery. We are proud of you, and we have nothing but love for you. Camp Margarito I personally salute you.


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