There are these type of boxers that are over hyped in popularity by some boxing 'gurus' before the fight but turned out to be mediocre in the actual bout. Worse scenario is when fighters were both unskilled betraying prior high evaluations and expectations of the fans. But you know, what the most disappointing type of fight for me would be? It's not when fighters where unskilled but when things become very dirty like some part of what we will discuss today.
Before we go to the darker side let us first talk about some legit punches boxers use. Boxers commonly land punches on two areas: the body and the head. Weakening the body is akin to softening the opponents knees, if he has a hard time standing up then a fighter can easily land his punches and knock him down. The body is larger than the head making it easier to land punches . Coaches often advised boxers to go for the body if the opponent has a better footwork. This is to wear them off and slow them down making them an easier prey for hits. If we're talking about knocking down an opponent then body blows would be a lot slower because the effects need to accumulate over time. Of course, it would be a different story if you are hit by sluggers with the likes Bob Foster, Marcos Maidana and George Foreman.
Did you notice named punches in boxing like jabs, hook, cross and uppercut have something in common? They are, most of the time aimed to land on the face area. There are nerves along the chin and jawline that will surely knock one out if a solid punch landed which make it a good objective. Well there are always exceptions. Boxers who have 'hard chins' have pretty good tolerance against such punishments. Things can become really bloody as our skin is pretty thin on the face area. Great impacts between punches and facial bones particularly in the eye area often lead to bloody cuts.
But you know no matter how bloody it could be, it is undoubtedly a part of the sport. The next part would be a little bit nasty as we're going to talk about taboo punches like the rabbit punch.
Rabbit Punches and Nasty Engagements
rabbit punch, literal not technical
The back of our head connected to the neck is one of the most vital part of our body. We can live even if we cut all our limbs but having just a shallow cut on that area would surely spell our demise. This is because that area serves as terminal on relaying information back and forth to other important organs of the body like the heart. If this connection is cut then the organ will not function correctly, worst case is it will not function at all. That's why in any sport even in training it's forbidden to touch that area.
In boxing the rabbit punch is one of the most terrible and deadly punches. It's commonly referred to as a chop behind the head but punches landing on the kidneys from behind during clinching is also considered as a rabbit punch. The term 'rabbit punch' was derived from the common practice of hunters in acquiring fur from the rabbits they caught. A whole, undamaged fur was far more valuable compared to those that were pierced by weapons like arrow heads so hunters in the past usually trap the rabbits and hit them at the back of their necks with blunt weapons like a stick or a club to preserve the furs.
Okay, back to boxing. The penalty for using a rabbit punch in boxing is varied. Based on some fights I have watched there are cases where these punches could be unintentional. An example case is when the stance of the opponent is very low and is pulling punches close to the ground, when the fighter cannot go as low as the opponent then accidental rabbit punches can be expected. In these cases the fighters are often warned by the referee if it still goes on then more severe penalties like losing a point or even disqualification can be applied.
If I must say, one of the worst and dirtiest fights in boxing history was the Lazarte-Casimero bout for the International Boxing Federation's (IBF) Junior Flyweight Championship which happened on February 11, 2012 at Mar Del Plata, Argentina. At that time the older Luis Lazarte was already notorious for playing dirty. He had already some matches in which he was disqualified.
Casimero was booed in the opening while Lazarte being at home was warmly welcomed by the crowd. Just by the start of the first round any observer would notice that the fight would be muddier. Lazarte threw a rabbit even at the beginning and this continued for the whole 10 rounds before he was TKO'ed. I think it's the match I have watched with the most rabbit punches, low blows and even biting. According to the reports Casimero was bitten twice. After the referee stopped the fight and was to declare Casimero as the winner, Lazarte threatened him with statements like "do you want to make it out here alive?". It's a terrible display, the camp of the Argentinian incited the crowd. Bottles and later on chairs were thrown into the ring. Casimero's camp were surrounded and received punishments both from the other side and the angry crowd. Casimero was hidden under the ring because he could became the focal point of the crowd's rage. It was a total riot. Later on the police arrived and quelled the uproar. The aftermath was to be expected. Lazarte was banned for life. The diplomatic relationship between Argentina and the Philippines took a turn for the worse.
Just stay safe and don't try to experiment punches like rabbit punch and low blows if you're training boxing or other mma. Remember that sports are meant to be played as a form of recreation and create a connection with fellow sportsmen. The goal is to improve and discipline oneself and use these knowledge to protect those who are important to us if needed. Talents in sports should not be use to bully people just to assert dominance.
Well, that's all. Thank you for reading.