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A recap of "Game of Thrones" from Salon.com:

"Violence is a disease--you don't cure it by spreading it to more people"

And for the occasion:

Boxing After Ali

The fighters' strategies were plain enough: Vargas, slightly taller and longer, leaned and twisted away from Salido, trying to create space; Salido, undeterred, crouched and advanced, trying to fill it in. Neither fighter hits especially hard, and both can take a punch: this combination is what made De La Hoya (and many others) so excited about the pairing, because it suggested that the two fighters would trade blows for a full twelve rounds. This calculation proved correct: there were moments when each fighter's knees buckled, or his body sagged, but both men stayed on their feet, delivering and bearing barrages that seemed, in the aggregate, unbearable. According to CompuBox statistics, they combined to throw 1,593 power punches, a category that includes every punch except a jab; that's the highest total ever recorded between two junior lightweights. (By contrast, when Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao fought last year, CompuBox recorded only 404 power punches.) Before the start of the twelfth round, a doctor ascended into the ring to examine Vargas's face, which was swollen and blotched, partly as a result of a series of head clashes. The crowd booed, by way of exhorting the doctor not to stop the fight. Vargas passed the examination, and his reward was three more minutes of HBO glory, and of punishment. The crowd applauded both boxers at the end, although the bipartisan mood lasted only until the judges' decision was announced: one judge had Vargas slightly ahead, but the other two scored it even, which meant a draw, and more booing; Salido had been the fan favorite, and it just so happened that most fans seemed sure that he had won. Online, the consensus among experts was that the fight had been close, and that a draw wasn't unreasonable.

In another way, though, a draw underscores the unreasonableness -- the irreducible pointlessness -- of boxing. After nearly an hour of violence, all the judges could determine was, in essence, that it was a close fight. Which is another way of saying that the fighters did exactly what everyone hoped they would do.

The Outsized Life of Muhammad Ali
Watch the third fight with Joe Frazier, in Manila. The two men nearly destroy each other. Ali admitted afterward that it was the "closest I've come to death." And Frazier, who despised Ali for mocking him, for calling him a gorilla and an Uncle Tom, said, "I hit him with punches that would have knocked a building down." Ali, who had won after Frazier's cornermen determined that he was too swollen, too blinded to go on, admitted that both he and Frazier were never the same after that third fight. "We went to Manila as champions, Joe and me, and we came back as old men," he said.
by das monde on Mon Jun 6th, 2016 at 10:47:09 PM EST

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