The punch everyone in Capital Centre will remember, vividly, came from the champ, Sugar Ray Leonard. The punch everyone was talking about 20 minutes later, knocked out the champ's adviser, Angelo Dundee.
This might have been the first championship fight in history that ended with not a mark on the winner but guards keeping the apparently puffy face of one of the fight game's legends from public sight.
"Did I see a guy wheel and swing at him?" I did," said Jim Ryan, a guard, still flabbergasted as he kept reporters at bay. "It's hard to miss a guy who falls at your feet."
A man does not reach Dundee's stature in an often-ugly business without angering at least a few people. And witnesses recalled that he and Joe (Pepe) Saunders, whispered to be on the periphery of Leonard's camp, argued heatedly on the way to the dressing room.
One of the witnesses, Rick Davis, said the men were screaming at one another, with Dundee's last words being. "You're a pain . . ." With that, Davis said, Saunders turned and smacked Dundee with a right cross.
Angee's legs buckled, almost as quickly as Dave Green's had after Leonard delivered a wicked left at 2:27 of the fourth round a few minutes earlier.
Leonard, meanwhile, was telling the world about that lethal left. He chose to ignore discussion of some pre-fight bragging, an incident four days ago when he predicted everything but the fact that his cornerman also would be knocked out.
At one of his never-ending public appearances, also in Capital Centre, a knot of fans had yelled to where he was seated: "Gonna knock him out in five?"
"Four," Leonard had answered winking.
Possibly, it could have been three. Or two. It was simply a matter of how often Green could run into the champ's jabs and stay upright. Leonard beat him like a seven-stroke drum roll and with one thunder shot signaled the end before Green hit the canvas.
The referee, Arthur Mercante, didn't bother to count to 10.After six, he flashed the sign that the fight was over. When the unofficial count had reached 89 . . . 90 . . . 91 . . . 92, Green began to move.
In five minutes, Green was able to be moved to a stool inside the ring. In 10 minutes, he was holding the shoulders of a burly man in a light blue suit and guiding his noodly legs toward his dressing room.
There were taunts.
"Dive. Dive. You don't belong in the ring."
"Are you all right?" someone yelled.
Even so slightly, Green moved his head up and down. He had survived, if barely.
But had Angie?
Twenty yards away, the 54-year-old trainer of Muhammad Ali was slumping toward the concrete and into the arms of several stunned reporters. They were moving toward Leonard's press conference when a spicier story suddenly fell into their laps.
"I was one of those he fell into," said Lee Zeidman of Channel 7. "I know when someone is out cold. His eyes were rolled back. His head hit the floor. I rolled him over on his back and checked his pulse.
"His glasses were off, but he was breathing okay. He was down maybe 45 seconds. When I asked if he could hear me he said: 'Yeah.' Then they took him into the dressing room."
It was a bizarre finish to an evening that included concern over the way Sugar Ray was showing concern for his brother, Sweet Roger, during a preliminary fight 90 minutes before his show of force.
In the ring, Roger was doing battle with luckless Johnny Gant -- and not doing well. By the end of the third round, Ray was so frustrated he would dash from his ringside seat and pepper Roger with advice between rounds.
It was more energy than he would need against Green.
Ray gave his first advice between rounds three and four, and Roger responded by being knocked down a round later. He admited afterward that a Gant right sent him down, although the referee judged it a slip.
By then, Ray was screaming and punching the air from atop his seat, a circumstance that made his official family -- including Dundee -- more than slightly uneasy. The chair was quite shaky, and they had dreadful visions of a $1 million slip, a fall that would make him a loser before he entered the ring.
But one does not pull a champ from his perch in public, regardless of how dangerous it might be. So Roger ended his unanimous-decision victory with Ray offering his chair lift, flailing away at the air, shouting and twisting -- but with two large men with four large hands keeping the champ steady.
Two hours later, it was obvious their care had been unnecessary. Ray could have whipped Green with one hand , the left. The fellow to whom they should have given extra protection was the one paid to keep the champ the champ.