Malignaggi: Russell is too old to ref


    Paulie MalignaggiLast Saturday night boxing fans witnessed one of the year’s biggest farces in the sport when referee Pat Russell stepped in to separate Jessie Vargas as he attempted to finish off a dazed and wobbly Tim Bradley in the 12th round of their welterweight bout.

    Why did Russell stop the bout?

    Well, it’s quite simple. Russell heard the 10-second warning for the round to end and somehow thought that it was the bell calling an end to the fight.

    Russell may never be able to shake the fiasco as a professional referee as long as his career continues, but was it an honest mistake or did his age have something to do with it?

    Former two-division world champion Paulie Malignaggi feels that Russell’s age was the main factor and what had transpired. Malignaggi believes that referees should have to retire after they hit a certain age.

    “This is exactly why referees should be forced to retire at a certain age,” said Malignaggi via Twitter. “You can’t be 100 years old and judging or reffing world class fights.”

    Did Russell’s age have anything to do with the stoppage? From the way he responded in the post fight interview, it seems like it.

    In all honesty, Russell should have left the ring and not stuck around for the interview then prepare a statement to be released.

    Can he bounce back from it? We shall see the next time he is an official for a fight if he continues. Russell Mora was able to bounce back from failing several missed low blow calls when Abner Mares faced Joseph Agbeko.

    There is a saying about not letting aging get you down because it’s hard to get back up. If Russell’s age has caught up with them, then Malignaggi is right, and it would be time to move on.