Judge C.J. Ross: The Face of Incompetency and Controversial Scorecards in Boxing

Floyd “Money” Mayweather’s performance against Saul “Canelo” Alvarez on Sept. 14 was nothing short of flawless, as boxing’s pound-for-pound king put on an entertaining clinic at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nev.

From start to finish, Mayweather (45-0-0, 26 KOs) proved to be the superior boxer, taking the fight to Alvarez (42-1-1, 30 KOs), landing hard shots virtually at will. Floyd even made the fight a lot more entertaining than it should have been, electing to stand in the pocket and trade shots with Canelo when it was pretty obviously all he needed to do was stay outside and take Canelo to school all night.

It was a one-sided performance, with many (myself included) giving Floyd all twelve rounds of the fight.

Then the judges’ scorecards were read.

While all three judges turned in questionable scorecards (Dave Moretti: 116-112, C.J. Ross: 114-114, Craig Metcalfe: 117-111), the already infamous Cynthia J. Ross proved to be the most incompetent in the pack. For those who don’t remember who Ross is: She’s the same judge who aided and abetted the iniquitous Manny Pacquiao robbery in 2012, scoring the Filipino congressman’s bout against Timothy Bradley 115-113 in favor of “Desert Storm.”

Of course, Pacquiao vs. Bradley wasn’t the first time Ross turned in a questionable scorecard. Her record as a judge is filled with controversial decisions, so much so that the nice folks at BoxRec.com actually created a page dedicated to her failures. Apparently, Ross has a thing for draws.

Yet, C.J. managed to outdo herself on Saturday, embarrassing the sport of boxing, once again, after one of the biggest fights in quite some time. This time, she scored the bout 114-114, and for moment, the boxing world held its breath as it appeared the sports’ pound-for-pound king was about to get robbed.

Thankfully, the other two judges scored the bout in the right man’s favor (both scorecards were too kind to Canelo in my opinion), and boxing avoided yet another embarrassing judging scandal.

Without a doubt, now’s probably a good time for the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) to reevaluate it’s criteria for selecting — and training — judges, giving the fact all three scoring the biggest fight in years proved to be less knowledgeable than the average casual boxing fan.

In a perfect world, NSAC would launch a detailed investigation of Ross, since there might be more to her pattern of awful scorecards than simply being clueless about everything boxing.

However, Ross wasn’t even disciplined or reprimanded after the ridiculous card she turned in after Pacquiao vs. Bradley, so it’s only rational to expect NSAC to continue its current policy of burying issues under the proverbial rug rather than fixing them.

After all, when RingTV.com reached out to NSAC executive director Keith Kizer for his thoughts on Ross being selected as a judge for Mayweather vs. Canelo less than a year after Bradley vs. Pacquiao, his response was: “She’s a great judge, including that night.”

David is a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and boxing practitioner who has watched and studied MMA for the past 8 years. Send him your questions @davidkingwriter and check out his blog.


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