Location: Aylmer (Gatineau) across the river from Ottawa
...is just plain nuts.
How, exactly, do you put your face back together after a punch makes it look like a rippling puddle of skin?
That’s the natural reaction to an astonishing photo from a weekend heavyweight bout in Atlantic City that shows a boxer’s face jiggling like a bowl of jello as he’s punched by an opponent.
But, according to experts, we are not as structured as we’ve been led to believe.
“The body is surprisingly elastic and deformable,” said Doug Richards, medical director at the University of Toronto’s David L. MacIntosh Sport Medicine Clinic.
“We think of ourselves as being pretty solid, but in fact we’re the Pillsbury Doughboy, most of us.”
Tony Pietrantonio, 34, was knocked out in the third round Saturday by a devastating punch by Lavarn Harvell.
The split-second photo shows Pietranonio’s upper and lower lips heading in different directions by the blow, as well as his ears flapping in the breeze. He was out cold before he even hit the canvas, according to one report.
The face, as it turns out, is a “soft tissue structure,” layered with muscles, skin and fascia — the tissue that makes skin movable on top of our bones.
“The whole bottom of the face can be pushed over several centimetres and bounce back,” said Richards. “You can grab a piece of somebody’s face and move it around without moving the bone.”
After a few minutes, Pietranonio was able to climb on to his stool and eventually leave the ring without assistance. He had also been knocked out in the first round.
While it’s impossible to tell from the photo if Pietranonio suffered any broken bones — a fractured nose, jaw or cheekbone are in the cards — the boxer is most certainly concussed, said Richards.
“Inside his skull, his brain is sloshing around just as much as his face, because the brain is just as soft and mushy as the face is, or even more so. So if the face is that messed up, guess what’s happening inside?”...