As paying punters watching two top heavyweight boxers battle it out for a world title, you want to see something exhilarating and entertaining, right?
You might be sat in the comfort of your own home having paid just £20 for the pleasure, while sinking a cold beer, picking at crisps and peanuts and occasionally hurling your expert advice at the telly from your sofa on how to win the fight.
Or, alternatively you’ve gone all out and spent £120 on a ticket to experience the super-electrifying atmosphere amongst the 80,000 roaring, raging, blood-thirsty crowd that have paid for the privilege to witness a monumental piece of boxing history.
Either way, in return, whether you’ve spent twenty quid or a hundred and twenty quid you want to see something special, something extraordinary, something exceptional, something momentous, yeah?
Of course you do! That’s why you’re there or why you’ve tuned in – you’ve worked hard for the cash, you’ve parted with it so now you want to be bowled over, dazzled and awe-struck by this spine-tingling, rip-roaring, thrilling and amazing experience. You want to see something straight out of ‘Rocky’, ‘Raging Bull’, ‘Rumble in the Jungle,’ – that sort of stuff, surely?
You want to see a brutal and barbaric tear-up that sets pulses racing, adrenaline pumping and hearts pounding! You want to see a savage and ferocious exchange of heavy artillery with huge hooking, exploding bombs that punish and smash the face, nose, chin, stomach and kidneys.
You want to see lightning-fast and sharp-stinging, eye-watering lefts, bone breaking rights, devastating flurrying-combinations that bruise and bust-up opponents. You want to see explosive uppercuts that snap back heads and elevate feet from the canvass as gum-shields, blood and teeth go flying.
You want knockouts!
Don’t worry about the exhausted fighters; a gruelling and battling slug-fest that’s raised whopping goose eggs above the eyes.
No, don’t worry about those guys – those guys get paid an obscene amount of money to knock the sense out of each other, so it’s only fair that a brutal and entertaining onslaught is provided in return, right?
That’s what you want isn’t it?
Or is it?
Don’t get me wrong, a good old toe-to-toe scrap does get the ticker pounding and the adrenaline running, and I must admit it is entertaining. However, I do pay £20 for a pay-per-view or £120 a ticket to watch a boxing match – not a punch-up.
If I wanted to watch a punch-up, I’d go down to my local pub just after last orders, wand witness an all out western-style pub brawl! And it wouldn’t cost me a penny to watch (It’d maybe cost me a few teeth being in the vicinity of all the violence and mayhem, but definitely no money whatsoever).
Yes, I want to be excited and entertained by the fight but I also want to watch two talented, highly skilled, elite, fit and healthy professional boxers that carry and represent themselves and the sport with grace, dignity, respect, passion, heart, determination, grit and panache. Two boxers that conduct their business in the ring by producing a display and performance that exemplifies class, skill and the desire to win and be the best they possibly can be.
Isn’t that what we’d like to see?
I’m fully aware that strategic game-plans sometimes have to dissolve as boxers are dragged into deep waters, which means they have to win ugly by all means necessary. And, sometimes that win also has to come in the form of a boring, ‘rather watch cement dry’ performance; whether it’s a twelve round jabbing snooze-fest, scoring a 10-9 with each round or a knockout punch in the 12th after a brutal tear-up. Either way on record, a win is a win.
In conclusion, I think it’s fair to say that boxing and brawling do come as part and parcel, and I’m sure that each individual will have an opinion of what they would rather witness – boxing or brawling?’
Personally, in an ideal situation I’d like to see two hungry, competitive, world class boxers trying to out-wit one another’s skill-set in an electrifying, energetic and gripping match-up with spiking moments of complete boxing, and pounding exchanges that would lift the roof off a living room occupied by five people or a stadium filled with 80,000 screaming spectators!