Jose Zepeda vs. Ivan Baranchyk was definitely worth another watch or two over the weekend as the pair waged war for five rounds at the MGM Grand.
But despite being probably the most entertaining fight witnessed throughout the pandemic, both men’s efforts count for nothing if neither is entirely safe in there.
Zepeda landed the punch of his life in the fifth round to end the challenge of an exhausted Baranchyk, who had given everything he had for the first three rounds.
The care Baranchyk then received afterward leaves a lot to be desired.
Prone and out on the canvas for some time, it seemed to be an age until treatment was forthcoming to the Belarussian.
Completely unacceptable in today’s age of boxing.
Over the past few years, several high-profile injuries, including the deaths of four warriors in 2019, should be evidence enough.
On the 19th of July that year, Maxim Dadashev lost in eleven rounds. He subsequently collapsed and died three days later.
Just six days later, Hugo Santillan passed out as the judges were announcing the draw result of his bout with Eduardo Abreu. He never regained consciousness as his organs failed. Santillan also required Surgery for a clot in his brain.
The incident took place just a month after Santillan lost in Germany to Artem Harutyunyan. In reality, the German board suspended him until July 30 due to a bad KO defeat.
September 21st saw Boris Stanchov of Bulgaria suffer cardiac arrest. Stanchov should have been in the ring and was using the license of his cousin Velichkov.
Stanchov has been using Velichkov’s medical records for over a year. Downed in the fifth round of a clash in Albania, Stanchov never recovered.
Less than one month on, American Patrick Day died after losing to Charles Conwell.
A stricken Day was rushed to a hospital after suffering a horrific knockout. He underwent emergency brain surgery but died four days after the October 12th bout.
Thankfully, this time around, medical staff discharged Baranchyk after a few days. Something ironically reported by promoter Lou DiBella, who also looked after the affairs of Patrick Day.
WBN pointed out that the care of Baranchyk was inept in a message to DiBella after the rewatch.
DiBella updated Baranchyk’s condition on October 4th. He’s said to be recovering and is yet to return to social media since the day after.
“Everything is good. I need time to think about my mistakes,” said Baranchyk.
For my money, so do some of those at ringside who took far too long to tender to the 27-year-old.