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Sunday, May 16, 2004

Tarver's Trunks Key to Victory

I'm always amazed by how these Pay-Per-View fights manage to have almost a complete blackout on any images from them appearing in the media, even after the fact. I guess the rationale is that people won't drop $50 if they can see highlights on the news the next day for free. In any case, the few pictures I've seen (and no, I didn't pony up for the PPV last night, fortunately, seeing as the boxing lasted for hardly four minutes), I think I've identified the key to Antonio Tarver's victory over Roy Jones.

As you probably don't recall, back in November I pointed out that Tarver had no chance because he was wearing purple sequins trunks, as seen here. You're not going to beat one of the great fighters of all time wearing purple sequins trunks. I did see that fight on HBO the week after it happened, and Tarver's complaints were overblown. He dominated a few rounds, but Jones probably won eight of the rounds in less spectacular fashion and thus deserved to win. Last night, though, Tarver seemed to have learned his lesson, entering the ring in a more standard pair of blue trunks (and that's the best pciture I can find). He looked the part, and he became champion.

My other sports insight of the weekend, since I've been trafficking in conspiracy theories lately, is that the Visa Triple Crown (and you have to say the "Visa" if you're doing the NBC broadcast, apparently) is fixed--or at least, the Preakness Stakes is. I figure people will always tune in for the Kentucky Derby as a rite of spring to see the pageantry. Then they will watch the Preakness to see if the Derby winner can win again. But then no one will watch the Belmont Stakes unless a horse has won both of the first two races and has a shot at the Visa Triple Crown.

It follows, logically, that the TV/ad people would fix the race to have the Derby winner come out on top at Pimlico as well, and for three years running now, a horse has won both of the first two legs--both horses went on to lose the third. In any case, do you think Smarty Jones realizes he has a chance to make history at Belmont? They could liven up the broadcast for me at least by bringing in animal cognition experts to expound on such issues. (And yes, I realize Jerry Seinfeld has a bit about horse racing just like this, which I saw on the Bob Costas interview show after initially writing about the horsies a few weeks back.)