Who is Chuck Giampi?
Who is Jerry Roth?
We know that they are, for one thing, boxing judges operating (I use
this verb advisedly) out of Las Vegas, but this scarcely defines them
unless one adds a pejorative modifier to that title.
Whoever they are, boxing fans would do well to cross their fingers and
toes whenever these two gents are scheduled to judge a fight, because it
seems they have been involved with every lame Vegas decision since Moe
Green chose to talk trash to the east coast mob.
Granted, bad decisions are part of boxing, but the fact that these two
men who have been associated with so many of them continue to work major
fights suggests a suspicious blind spot on the part of the Nevada
commission or the intervention of a supernatural agency other than God.
Chuck and Jerry.
Maybe they're an old lounge act dating from the time when comedians
came in pairs. Martin and Lewis. Abbot and Costello. And maybe,
acting in concert with some Las Vegas cultural society, they've been
commissioned to marry the burlesque tradition to performance art, and
have chosen the boxing world in which to practice their merry mischief.
Take my title...please!
If so, then last night's Ayala-Tapia fight was some of their best work,
because it elevated the rendering of a decision to the level of a punch
line. I mean, most who watched Paulie Ayala doing his best to knock the
air out of...well, the air, while eating counters and growing steadily
more dispirited just had to believe that Unanimous Decision Tapia was a
I imagine somewhere in the post-fight turmoil two pot-bellied geezers
with white belts were going "Nyuk, nyuk," and giving one another a
tremulous high five.
Scoring a fight is not rocket science. A ten-year-old can do it.
There are for sure going to be subjective differences, but these two men
have been so consistently at odds with the consensus for years, either
they have degenerated to a point where the perceptual acuity of a
ten-year-old is beyond them or else they have become such masters of
their craft that they now see punches no one else can see, they sense
subtle varieties of ring mastery that we cannot...
The lounge act thing is more likely.
There are, of course, other possible explanations for their often
curious judgments, but let's give Chuck and Jerry the benefit of the
doubt and just credit them for doing the best judge schtick since Flip
Give 'em their own show, I say.
Tonight on "America's Funniest Arbiters" Chuck explains his card while
Jerry beats him about the head and shoulders with a pig bladder. And in
the historical segment, Special Guest Star Julio Sid Cesar Chavez reprises
his famous Pernell Whittaker skit.
But seriously, folks....
Wouldn't you like to know something about these men who've brought us
so many laughs over the years, who've proved that what you see is not
always what you get, who have in their own way done more to make the
sport what it is than the fighters they are paid to observe? Wouldn't
you like to have some idea of what kind of guys they are? Who their
friends are? Who buys them lunch? What's in their closets?
I know I would.
And I bet Johnny Tapia would, too.