Qual­ity of­fi­cials for mega-fight

Rep­re­sen­ta­tives from May­weather and Pac­quiao of­fer praise for vet­eran crew.

Los Angeles Times - - SPORTS - By Lance Pug­mire lance.pug­mire@la­times.com Twit­ter: @la­time­spug­mire

May­weather and Pac­quiao camps are pleased with judges and ref­eree se­lected for the May 2 bout.

The Ne­vada State Ath­letic Com­mis­sion on Tues­day as­signed three vet­eran judges and a ref­eree familiar with Floyd May­weather Jr. and Manny Pac­quiao to work their bout May 2 at MGM Grand in Las Ve­gas.

The judges will be Dave Moretti of Las Ve­gas, Burt A. Cle­ments of Reno and Glenn Feld­man of Con­necti­cut, and the ref­eree will be Kenny Bay­less, who’s han­dled seven Pac­quiao bouts and five of May­weather’s.

“We will only se­lect of­fi­cials with a proven track record of high-pro­file fights, with me eval­u­at­ing a litany of sta­tis­ti­cal data to en­sure th­ese judges have been suc­cess­ful in high-im­pact fights,” Ne­vada com­mis­sion Ex­ec­u­tive Direc­tor Bob Bennett said.

Cle­ments, 62, of Reno, has worked only one Pac­quiao fight, and his mis­take cost the Filipino a 2004 split­de­ci­sion tri­umph over Juan Manuel Mar­quez in the first of their four fights.

Pac­quiao knocked down Mar­quez three times in the first round, and should have earned a 10-6 score. Cle­ments ad­mit­ted af­ter­ward that he didn’t re­al­ize he could score a round more lop­sided than 10-7. That ex­tra point re­sulted in his 113113 score­card that forced a draw.

Pac­quiao pro­moter Bob Arum praised the as­sign­ments of the of­fi­cials. “Moretti and Cle­ments are tremen­dous judges, hon­or­able guys, and Glenn Feld­man is ter­rific, has a very good rep­u­ta­tion. Th­ese are ex­traor­di­nar­ily good of­fi­cials from the stand­point of com­pe­tency.”

Leonard Ellerbe of May­weather Pro­mo­tions said, “I can’t be­lieve it, but this is one thing Bob Arum and I do agree on: We’re very pleased with the se­lec­tion of the of­fi­cials. I have no doubt the of­fi­cials will be very fair in judg­ing the fight and the ref­eree will un­doubt­edly do a mas­ter­ful job.”

Bay­less worked May­weather’s Oct. 11, 1996, pro de­but in Las Ve­gas, and he ref­er­eed the fighter’s most re­cent bout, a unan­i­mous de­ci­sion over Mar­cos Maidana in Septem­ber.

Bay­less’ seven as­sign­ments with Pac­quiao date to 2006, and he most re­cently han­dled Pac­quiao’s unan­i­mous-de­ci­sion tri­umph over Ti­mothy Bradley last year.

“Kenny Bay­less is the best ref­eree in the world,” Arum said.

Moretti, 70, of Las Ve­gas, is con­sid­ered per­haps the top boxing judge in the world. He’s worked nine of May­weather’s last 14 fights, and has worked six of Pac­quiao’s bouts.

Moretti turned in 116-112 scores (eight rounds to four) in fa­vor of May­weather in three fights: against Zab Ju­dah in 2006, Saul “Canelo” Al­varez in 2013 and in May­weather’s com­pet­i­tive first fight against Ar­gentina’s Maidana last year.

Moretti had scored Pac­quiao com­fort­ably ahead be­fore his stop­pages of Os­car De La Hoya in 2008 and Miguel Cotto in 2009. In Pac­quiao’s third fight against Mar­quez, in which punch statis­tics gave the Mex­i­can fighter an edge, Moretti scored the bout 115-113 for Pac­quiao.

Cle­ments has been as­signed to three May­weather bouts, award­ing him a dom­i­nant 120-107 score in 2009 against Mar­quez and the widest edge among the three judges, 117-111, in the first May­weather-Maidana fight.

Arum dis­missed the Pac­quiao-Mar­quez mis­cue by Cle­ments. “Here’s how hon­or­able the guy is: He ad­mit­ted the mis­take that night,” Arum said.

Feld­man, who founded the Con­necti­cut Boxing Hall of Fame, has worked only one fight fea­tur­ing May­weather or Pac­quiao, and that one ended in the third round, a May­weather win by tech­ni­cal knock­out in 1998.

Al Bello Getty Images

KENNY BAY­LESS, shown in Septem­ber dur­ing Floyd May­weather’s fight with Mar­cos Maidana, will be the ref­eree for the May­weather-Manny Pac­quiao bout.

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