These sanctions are a result of Lopez calling the referee of his March bout with Orlando Salido a “gambler” during an interview broadcast on television following the fight. Lopez lost the bout via a technical knock-out, when the referee stopped the bout.
While the commission has every right to suspend Lopez’s boxing license for one-year, their decision to levy financial and community service consequences are extreme.
If the referee, Roberto Ramirez Sr., felt he was slandered, there are court systems in Puerto Rican to handle the dispute.
As for assigning community service, Lopez only owes Puerto Ricans and boxing fans honest and clean performances when he enters a ring.
This decision could keep Puerto Rican fighters from participating in post-fight interviews, thus limiting exposure in local and International media outlets which help promote the sport.
Lopez had commented in recent days that he might consider retirement if suspended, but other commissions in the United States, or other countries, could issue him the opportunity to fight while he is under suspension in Puerto Rico.
PR Best Boxing, which represents Lopez, will appeal the Puerto Rican commission’s overzealous decision.