One of the biggest reactions that came out of last Saturday night's Manny Pacquiao-Timothy Bradley bout was the notion that folks were through with boxing, that they couldn't watch any more fights after the judges robbed Pacquiao of a victory, as was the case according to a lot of reporters and experts.
Twitter is a sounding board that way, a giant community forum on which to put down your thoughts about anything in 145 characters or less. More than a few of those Tweets (and that will be the last time I use that word for something other than the noise that comes from a bird) showed frustration and despair about the sweet science. That Pac-man won the fight, anyone could see that, and that boxing judges are corrupt and a grave injustice was done.
This space is not my place to criticize judges and the judging system. They're part of the sport, it is what it is, some people are always going to hate that fact. But hardcore fight fans aren't going away just because Bradley was handed a gift win. And casual fans, you know a lot of you are going to chip in your 10 bucks or whatever for the next big Vegas fight event. Not all of you are going away completely.
The pre-fight hype is too enticing. The personalities in boxing are still intriguing, sometimes tragic figures that somehow fans can identify with. HBO and Showtime still have a stake in the sport and promote it well. You'll be watching "Game of Thrones" and see an ad for the next big fight.
So you, the one on the fence about not watching boxing anymore, are going to skip the next Floyd Mayweather fight? The Pacquiao-Bradley rematch? I'm thinking you'll come back. Boxing is a great social event. It unites people. It's an event.
Boxing is still big. It still matters. It's old school but the love of the sport is passed down from generation to generation.
Pacquiao fans have every right to be upset. Bradley would be a fool not to take the win. But that's why those who want to walk away because of one bad decision need to stick around - there's another fight to be fought.
There are other fighters to watch. Canelo Alvarez. Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. The contenders in the welterweight and middleweight ranks. Olympic boxing - now, if you really want to get upset at the sport, watch that computerized scoring in London, although it looks like it's gone after this year.
Pretty much everyone loses in boxing once, but this isn't the end for Pacquiao. It won't kill his spirit and his mission. So just accept what happened and move on. Let the review process run its course and when the next big fight rolls around, know where you're going to watch it.
And if you don't, well, that's probably is OK, because millions of others are going to buy the pay-per-view, and the business of boxing will go on and the cycle will continue.