In a good old fashioned robbery, #5 IBF Sam Soliman (44-13, 18 KOs) found himself on the receiving end of a highly controversial 10 round last Friday night at the Little Creek Casino Resort, in Shelton, Washington, USA. Referee Jack Reiss appeared to have a really bad day at the office.
Reiss blew a call in the 4th round when Wade shoved Soliman to the canvas. Reiss ruled it a knockdown when it was a clear shove to the canvas. Instant replays showed that Reiss totally blew the call. Additionally, Reiss failed to take points off from #14 WBC Wade for body slamming Soliman to the canvas on two separate occasions.
Letting Wade get away with the body slam the first time was bad enough, but to let him do it again without taking a point away with disappointing. Wade also got away with clinching all night long each time Soliman would come inside on him. The clinching that Wade was doing was very similar to how Adrien Broner clinched Shawn Porter all night long in their fight last week.
The only differences were there wasn’t a referee to take point away from Wade for his constant holding, and Soliman failed to work his way out of the holding by throwing punches. Had he continued to keep throwing shots each time he was held, he’d have helped himself. But Reiss failed to do his job by taking points off from Wade, who held over and over again. It was predictable what Wade was doing by the 3rd round. Soliman would come in, and Wade would grab him immediately.
The judges scored the fight 95-94, 97-92 for Wade, and 96-93 for Soliman. The score of 97-92 by Robert Hoyle was laughable, and out of touch with what happened in the fight. Soliman clearly won the fight by outworking Wade in every round. The only rounds that Wade appeared to win was the 4th and 8th. You couldn’t even give the 4th round to Wade because of the blown call by Reiss.
Wade was unable to let his hands go for some reason. He constantly walked Soliman down, but instead of throwing shots, he would stand like a statue and wait for an opportunity to counter. Those occasions rarely came. Mostly, Wade would plod forward, flicking a jab in the air every now and then, and missing badly.
“I definitely felt I won, and I think Wade knows I won too,” Soliman said. “He never hurt me once. My knee held up 100 percent. The knockdown he got credit for wasn’t even a knockdown. It didn’t come from a punch. He literally pushed me down.”
Like I said, it was a bad night for referee Jack Reiss. I think it was the worst job I’ve seen him do as a referee. It’s one thing for a referee to blow a call on a knockdown, but then to just stand there and do nothing after Wade twice body slammed Soliman, there was no excuse for that. And then not to take points off for Wade’s constant holding in the fight. Had Reiss done his job, Soliman would have easily won the fight. Instead, he finds himself the loser, and it means no title shot against IBF middleweight champion David Lemieux.
I think the International Boxing Federation need to review the Soliman-Wade fight and order a rematch because this fight was too controversial for them to let Wade move forward.