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Atlas: The ref did a horrible job in the Rios vs. Chaves fight

Brandon RiosBy Dan Ambrose: ESPN commentator Teddy Atlas went into one of his legendary rants last Friday night at the referee job by Vic Drakulich in last week’s fight between Top Rank promoted Brandon Rios and Diego Chaves.

Atlas thinks that Drakulich lost control over the fight early and then blew it by disqualifying Chaves in the 9th round without telling anyone why he was disqualifying him. Atlas thinks that is was odd that Chaves was disqualified at a time when he was leading in the fight going into the 9th. Atlas points out that Rios is a Top Rank fighter, and that the show was a Top Rank promoted event. Atlas doubts that Rios would have been disqualified by Drakulich.

“It was a horrible, horrible, horrible, horrible job by the referee,” Atlas said. “He lost control over the fight from the very beginning. He allowed it to escalate. He allowed Rios to curse at Chaves during the breaks. What was going on with that? He didn’t say anything at all when he was cursing at him. He allowed it to become a runaway train. It should have never gotten to the point where a fighter was disqualified. But for s ref to do that it was a travesty. Then you look at how Chaves was ahead on the scorecards going into the 9th round when it was stopped, and then you look at the promoter is Top Rank; the fighter Rios was, guess what? The promoter has signed up with; you guessed it, Top Rank. Do you think that maybe influenced it? I hope not. But I would ask the fans. Do you think if it was the other way, do you think the referee would have stopped the fight on Rios? I’m not blaming anybody or trying to create a conspiracy; For some reason I don’t think you would have seen Rios disqualified. Again, horrible job [by Drakulich]. We never got an explanation for why Chaves was disqualified for that fight. We’re still waiting for that. We’ve never got it.”

Atlas never mentioned the way that Rios was smashing his head into the face of Chaves each time he would clinch with him. That to me would seem like a much bigger deal than Rios cursing at Chaves without Drakulich doing anything to address the issue.

Atlas also didn’t say anything about how Chaves had a point taken off for holding too much when he’d only clinched 2 times in the 1st round, 3 times in the 2nd round and 9 times in the 3rd round at the time that Drakulich took a point off from Chaves. Of course, referees are able to take points off for clinching whenever they want, but it was definitely troubling to see Chaves lose a point so early in the fight for clinching that many times.


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