“What can be done about it?” asks Grady Brewer after Adama defeat
By Alex Pierpaoli
Photo by Steve Miller
originally published at BillyCBoxing.com
Grady Brewer isn’t happy.
“This is bull. This is horrible. It's why people wanna go to MMA now.”
This past Saturday night Brewer was on the losing end of a 10 round split decision against Osumanu Adama at the Lowell Memorial Auditorium in Lowell, Massachusetts. This writer was not in attendance but descriptions of the card, promoted by Chicago Fight Club Promotions, mention it being replete with delays and disorder. KO Digest’s Jeffrey Freeman described the show as “ragtag” and reported the main event didn’t even begin until after midnight.
Grady Brewer, 30-15 (16), was tabbed the winner by one of the three judges, 96-94, overruled by scores of 97-93, 96-94 the other way. Brewer felt he won more rounds in the bout and even had Adama on the verge of a kayo at one point.
“I think the referee was thinking about maybe stopping it, I think it was the fifth round, Brewer recalls. “I wouldn’t want the ref to stop it in that situation on me so I’m not saying they shoulda stopped it. But they coulda probably called it a 10-8 round. He was pretty much showing that he was out on his feet, he was staggered, he was wobbly. The bell saved him in that round.”
At stake in the match-up were two different straps, of the IBO Inter-Continental and WBC Continental Americas variety, but Adama couldn’t make the middleweight limit and could not claim the titles after the win.
“He was only a half a pound heavy,” Brewer stated. “It wasn’t like he was really heavy. He couldn’t lose that half a pound though. So he couldn't even qualify to fight for the belts. So that was good because he didn’t get the belts neither cause he didn’t deserve them. So I think God made the way for him not to get the belts because of the simple fact He knew how it was gonna turn out. He knew they was gonna try to rob me. I didn't get the belts, he didn't get the belts…he didn’t qualify for them. And I don’t think he won the fight.”
Now forty-two years old, Grady Brewer knows he may not get many more chances like that. He’d made the middleweight limit for the contest but lost his shot in the split-decision defeat. The titles Brewer had gotten even closer to on the scales were once again out of reach after the official decision was read.
“That's what hurts me the most,” said Brewer. “Because it was a title shot, a title opportunity to gather those belts. They were interim belts. But it’s still an opportunity to move on up. And I felt that was my chance to really redeem myself and get back on track.”
Brewer has been fighting since 1999 and has seen just about everything during his career. One of the high points was winning The Contender Season 2; one of the weirder moments was his most recent bout, in august of 2012, when he was bitten on the neck by Giorbis Barthelemey and won by disqualification. And Brewer has lost by split-decision once before, an eight-rounder to Sechew Powell in June of 2004, but at this late stage in his career this split-decision loss to Adama leaves him hurting; hurting enough to consider retiring, even when physically Brewer feels good.
“The way things are going with boxing, with the way things happened this last Saturday it makes me wanna let it go. But I know I’m still handling these guys even of a younger age," Brewer continued. "Guys, that are more active than me. I know I could still deal with these guys. But of course I’m dealing with these guys that have promoters. I don’t have the backing behind me. And when you don’t have backing behind you it makes it a lot harder. So I feel like I’m fighting the backing these people have and the fight. It makes it a lot tougher for a person like me to wanna keep continuing on when that type of stuff is on your back.”
And Brewer notes how some of the more ridiculous decisions like Bradley-Pacquiao in 2012 and Williams-Lara in 2011 occurred in plain-sight of millions. It stands to reason that in the less visible, out of the way cards, ones where one fighter comes in as the designated opponent, it can happen a lot more often.
“It can easily happen to a person like me” Brewer admitted. “It’s horrible how the boxing world is right now.”
But Brewer acknowledges that there is a lot of gray area in accurately scoring a fight. Although judges are supposed to use 4 criteria to evaluate each round, clean punching, effective-aggressiveness, ring generalship and defense, a bout often comes down to two factors; who threw more meaningful punches versus who did more damage.
“Well, that is a person’s discretion, you know, definitely. That’s what the commission told me it’s the judges’ discretion on how they feel, based on that. It’s hard to say because some people like maybe the pressure that they put on a fighter, and some people like the damage that the fighter does to a fighter. And everybody scores that differently. But you know with everybody looking at a fight I just don't see how it could be so lopsided regardless of whatever they’re looking at. It can’t be that much in between either one of those that we’re talking about to make it so lopsided. You have to go about where the punches were landed and how they was landed and you gotta go about what are you looking at all around…you gotta judge everything…you can’t politic on certain things…you have to be more open-minded. You have judges out there that do that and they have judges out there that don’t do that.”
Except in the case of a knockout, there’s no doubt boxing is subjective. When a fight goes the distance a fighter’s fate is in the hands of just 3 people. While everyone who witnesses a fight is likely to have an opinion on what went down and press row is where you’ll find a concentration of informed opinions.
“Brewer appeared to outwork Adama over the ten rounds,” said KO Digest’s Jeffrey Freeman. “Was it a robbery, nah, just a close fight that went the way of the house, not the way of the visitor.”
“I had Brewer up 5-3 after 8 rounds,” said Stephen Tobey of MaxBoxing.com. “Adamu won the last 2 on my card for a draw. Brewer let his hands go more often and threw more combinations.”
Had the officials seen it as a draw it might have added support to the idea of a rematch but Brewer isn’t sure Team Adama wants that.
“After the fight his trainer said that I had him (Adama) so confused,” Brewer recounted. “I feel with stuff like that being said that they was lucky to get outta the fight with me and they would not wanna take a rematch with me…but my thing is that they didn’t get the belts so let’s do it again. Let’s do it again based on just the belts.”
And should he get a rematch from Adama, Brewer feels pretty strongly of how that will go.
“I didn’t think he was all that and I still don't think he's all that. When I was fighting him in the first couple rounds I felt that he was really not on my level…I think if I fought him again and trained a little bit different I think I would put him outta there. I know I can get him outta there.”
But Brewer knows the odds of getting another shot aren’t exactly in his favor.
“Only thing we can do is walk away with our heads down. I tried to put up a fight about it once before (vs. Powell). At the end of the day I still got the loss on my record.”
Grady Brewer isn’t happy.