Even before Antonio Margarito steps into the ring with world boxing star Manny Pacquaio in Dallas on Saturday, the welterweight fighter will be waging another fight: that is, to regain his respectability as a boxer.
Margarito gained notoriety as the sport's biggest bogeyman after officials at a January 2009 fight found his hand wrap to have traces of sulfur and calcium which, when combined with oxygen, forms the “Plaster of Paris.”
Now, media figures are
taking cheap shots at the fighter over the incident.
After joking about Freddie Roach's Parkinson's Disease, the Roach took swipes at Margarito, warning officials that he may try to cheat again.
Even comedian David Letterman poked fun at the boxer by making him the focus of his countdown, “Top Ten Reasons Why Antonio Margarito Used Plaster Of Paris.”
Number 7 on the countdown was “I was only commemorating the 26th anniversary of the Luis Resto incident.”
Letterman's reference to Resto was in poor taste. Officials found that Resto had taped his fists with plaster in his fight against Billy Collins Jr., leading Resto to serve 2 1/2 years for assault, conspiracy and criminal possession of a deadly weapon.
Meanwhile, the broken-down Collins stopped fighting after he permanently lost his vision after the fight and later killed himself in a car accident.
Luckily for Shane Mosley, who was scheduled to fight Margarito at the “Plaster of Paris” incident, was able to avoid Collins' fate after Mosley's camp discovered Margarito's tainted gloves before the match up.
Margarito didn't serve time for his misdeed but had his California boxing license revoked for a year.
Sports commentators are wagging their fingers at boxing promoter Bob Arum for allowing the Pacquaio-Margarito fight from happening.
According to rumors, Margarito had plastered up his gloves in other fights.
But as the coming challenge shows, money trumps over reason.
Pacquiao stands to earn as much as $25 million while the “Tijuana Tornado” Margarito could earn up to $8 million for the Nov. 13 fight.
If Pacquiao wins, he will also become the WBC junior middleweight title holder and only boxer to win eight different weight division titles.
Let's hope Pacquaio's decision to fight Margarito is a ticket to boxing glory and not to permanent injury.
-as reported by FanHouse