Press Release

Athletic Commission to Closely Supervise Championship Bouts

December 27, 2005

CONTACT: Armando Garcia, Executive Officer (916) 263-2195

SACRAMENTO – In past years world championship bouts in boxing were scheduled for 15 rounds. The regional and state championship bouts in those days were scheduled for 12 rounds. The additional three rounds were known as the 'championship rounds', and the consumers knew the difference.

For various health and safety reasons the duration of world championship bouts was lowered from 15 rounds to 12 rounds. However, the regional or state championship bout distance has never consistently changed. So now, both world, regional and state championship bouts are scheduled for 12 rounds.

The proliferation of championship organizations and the many regional championship bouts that they sanction have complicated the issue while at the same time adding a health concern for the boxers and one of integrity for the consumer.

It is clear that not all boxers who are proposed to and actually box in these bouts are sufficiently physically fit and or are at an acceptable skill level to compete for the full 12 round distance. Statistics show that most of these bouts end by knockout and most end before the 10th round.

This raises two concerns for the Commission. One, boxer health and safety. And two, consumer integrity.

It's clear that it takes a lot of hard work and effort to prepare and box 12 full rounds. Some of these boxers are pushed too early into 12 round bouts. The immediate potential negative health impact on some of these boxers is obvious, but the long-term effect is unknown, as boxing has no real medical database. For the consumer, few know what a true championship bout is and what they are spending their money on may fall short of their expectations.

Therefore, effective immediately, the Commission will more closely review proposed championship and or 12 round bouts. It will strive to schedule all regional or lesser recognized championship bouts, for no more than 10 rounds.

The purpose of this process is to better protect the health and safety of the boxers while at the same time preserving the integrity of our consumers.

Concurrently, the Commission will continue to work with promoters to assure that they meet their business goals as it understands that some boxers are fit and experienced to box 12 rounds whether or not they are competing for a recognized championship award. It is also clear to the Commission that the consumer wants to see world class boxers competing in events scheduled for 12 rounds whether or not a part of their award is a championship belt. We will assist them in assuring that these efforts continue for the betterment of the sport and the enjoyment of the consumer.

Questions or comments should be directed to Armando Garcia, Executive Officer at 916-263-2195.