In boxing, a referee (often called the ref for short) is the person who enforces the rules of boxing within the ring.
In the Punch-Out!! series, the referee's main job is to initiate the fight between the two boxers, and to begin counting when one of the boxers falls down. They will also declare who the winner is, either by knockout, technical knockout, or a split decision.
In the Wii game, the referee is more clearly seen than ever. He has grey hair and a small brown mustache and beard and is very considerate when he's deciding the winner. He also has trouble with controlling some of Mac's opponents who want to fight immediately. In fact, Aran Ryan, Bald Bull, and Super Macho Man actually attack the referee. He is also speculated to be the same referee from the arcade games.
It is sometimes speculated why the referee does not disqualify some boxers, who are clearly cheating. As in the case of Aran Ryan, Great Tiger, Bear Hugger, King Hippo, Bald Bull, Hoy Quarlow, Dragon Chan, and Soda Popinski, as they use illegal moves and objects, as Aran Ryan has his rope glove and sometimes attacks with his elbow or head, forbidden in boxing, and King Hippo has the man hole, while Bald Bull does the Bull Charge, Bear Hugger uses a squirrel as a partner, Hoy Quarlow uses a staff to attack, Dragon Chan uses kicks and Soda Popinski uses his Soda as some kind of steroid, especially in Title Defense. And finally, Great Tiger uses magic to teleport around the ring, which would also be forbidden.
Punch-Out and Super Punch-Out (Arcade)
- 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10!
- "Great playing! You're an up-and-coming boxer!" (When the challenger wins a match against someone other than Mr. Sandman or Super Macho Man.)
- "Come on, stand up and fight!" (When the challenger loses a match.)
- "Ladies and gentlemen! This is the main event! Introducing in the left corner, the champion of the world, Mr. Sandman!" (Introduction to Mr. Sandman)
- "He's down for the count!" (When an opponent gets knocked out.)
- "Ladies and gentlemen, we got a new champion!" (After defeating Mr. Sandman or Super Macho Man.)
- "Ladies and gentlemen! Super Macho Man!" (Introduction to Super Macho Man.)
Super Punch-Out (SNES)
- "One! Two! Three! Four! Five! Six! Seven! Eight! Nine! Ten!"
- "Knockout!" (regardless of if it's a KO or a TKO)
- "Time up!" (when time expires)
- "Come on, come on. Fight!" (When opponent gets up)
- "Let's go. Fight!" (When Little Mac gets up)
- "One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, NINE, TEN! Knockout!"
- "TKO!" (when activating a special KO animation on an opponent's third KD)
- "It's over, it's over! TKO!" (when the opponent falls normally on their third KD)