Adalaide Byrd, the Nevada fight judge who turned in a highly criticized scorecard favoring Canelo Alvarez in his Saturday night draw against middleweight boxing champion Gennady Golovkin, is expected to be sidelined from the Oct. 7 UFC event and possibly through the remainder of the year, three officials familiar with the situation have told the Los Angeles Times.
Nevada Athletic Commission executive director Bob Bennett did not immediately return a call from The Times on Wednesday, but he did say following Byrd’s performance Saturday night that Byrd needed “a break” and to “take a breather.”
Byrd, a veteran judge who has scored more than 100 championship and title-elimination boxing matches, stunned fans by giving former two-division champion Alvarez (49-1-2) 10 of 12 rounds in what was seen as a highly competitive bout that was scored mostly as a draw or a one-point Golovkin victory by those watching near ringside.
Instead, unbeaten Golovkin (37-0-1) was dealt the first blemish on his record. He retains his three belts by virtue of the draw, and promoters said this week they will begin negotiating a rematch, likely to be held in May.
“She’s not being suspended, but she is being benched for a couple of months,” one official familiar with Byrd’s situation said.
The official spoke on condition of anonymity because permission had not been granted to speak publicly on the matter.
While Bennett has praised Byrd’s work over time and her attention to judges’ training, her stunning score in the major bout that sold out T-Mobile Arena and drew a strong pay-per-view audience on HBO is akin to the bad nights of judges Duane Ford and C.J. Ross in the disputed 2012 Timothy Bradley Jr. victory over Manny Pacquiao.
Ford left judging soon after, and Ross returned in 2013 to give Alvarez the nod of a tie score against Floyd Mayweather Jr. in a bout many viewed as lopsided in Mayweather’s favor.
After that, both Ross and former Nevada Athletic Commission executive director Keith Kizer left the sport.
One commission official from another state said it’d be highly unlikely that any state commission would assign Byrd to another major bout again.
Byrd briefly met with Bennett after Saturday’s bout and expressed some remorse about how her card so dramatically differed with those of fellow judges Dave Moretti (115-113 for Golovkin) and Don Trella (114-114).
Attempts to reach Byrd have been unsuccessful, and Bennett said it’s his policy to prohibit media access to Nevada judges to discuss specific bouts.