by Green Machine
Shannon Briggs shouldn’t have been in Intensive Care. In fact, he shouldn’t have been in the ring against Vitali Klitschko at all this past weekend. Blame his corner, blame the ref, but most of all blame the blood suckers that put this bout together because they could have cost Briggs his life.
Briggs has been around a long time, he’s a big and imposing figure and for those reasons he was given a shot at the world heavyweight championship despite the fact that he wasn’t deserving of it in the first place. Forget about him being a big strong fighter with a punchers chance, forget about Vitali being past his prime and ripe for the taking as some said before the bout, it was all hype.
No one can really blame Briggs for taking the fight, despite the shallow depths of the heavyweight division there’s no guarantee another shot would come his way and we all know boxers aren’t always very good at looking out for their own best interest.
Prior to the Klitschko bout Briggs had fought a total of four rounds in the past three and a half years, four bouts lasting a round a piece and all against C level opposition. Granted, three of those were stoppages in his favor, but there’s no fair way to judge a fighter’s competence based on those bouts. Take in the fact that Briggs is a lifelong asthmatic, a challenge for any fighter let alone a 38 year old heavyweight, and this would have made it even more important, in my opinion, to test Briggs against stronger opposition just to see if he could breathe properly in a longer bout.
We all know what Vitali Klitschko is capable of, but none of us really knew what Briggs could handle and the people around him should have known this going in. Briggs is a warrior with great heart, but as much as that can be a blessing in boxing, it can also be fighter’s downfall when no one else is willing to step in for him.
This is boxing after all, and the best, deserving contenders aren’t always the guys getting the big fights but setting up Briggs for this disaster was a mistake and it could have been much worse than it turned out. For now, we can all be relieved that Shannon is recovering and in good spirits.