Mayweather vs. Pacquiao: 5 Reasons No One Should Care About This Fight
Since Floyd Mayweather Jr. announced he would return to the ring by May 5th, the two-year-old discussion of boxing’s biggest fight was driven into an extra gear.
Mayweather has since sent the boxing public into a frenzy by publicly calling out his “rival” Manny Pacquiao via Twitter, once again making the much-delayed super-fight the biggest topic in boxing.
Unfortunately, all the debates, discussions, predictions and previews will probably be for nought as both fighters’ promotional teams have already given multiple reasons as to why the fight can’t be made before Floyd serves 87 days in jail.
So instead of dwelling on a fight that won’t happen, we as a community of fans need to learn to ignore the false promise of a Pacquiao-Mayweather face-off.
Here are five reasons as to why none of us should be talking about this fictional fight.
It’s Probably Not Going to Happen
Let’s just get this out of the way.
Bob Arum and the team at Top Rank have already let it be known that Pacquiao won’t be ready to fight anyone on May 5th due to a cut suffered in his November fight with Juan Manuel Marquez.
The cut story seems like an excuse and has been contradicted by Pacquiao’s coach Freddy Roach.
The fact of the matter is that Arum stands to make more money matching Pacquiao against fighters from the Top Rank stable in low-risk fights than he does splitting the proceeds with Golden Boy or another promotional body.
Add that to the fact that the stylistic matchup seems to favour “Money” more than it does the Filipino fighter who looked confused and stiff against the defensive Marquez, and it seems very unlikely that Arum will ever let his cash cow share the ring with the sport’s best defensive fighter.
The Fight Will Probably Be Boring
Floyd Mayweather is probably boxing’s most abrasive and controversial personalities.
He makes for great TV: burning $100 bills, trading up luxury automobiles and forcing Ray J to sing his greatest hits in his living room (Money Team)!
Unfortunately, Floyd’s abrasive and unpredictable personality outside the ring is diametrically opposed to his in-ring manner.
Patient and selective with his punch output, Mayweather is one of the best defensive fighters in the history of the sport, and while his style inspires plaudits from the boxing intelligentsia, his fights can be slow and uneventful, turning off casual fans.
A Pacquiao-Mayweather fight will draw more eyes to the sport than any fight in the last 20 years, and a stinker would probably do irreparable damage to the sport's public image.
If Pacquiao was unable to overwhelm the older, slower, smaller Marquez, he could very well end up looking as lost as Shane Mosley did in outing against Mayweather.
The last thing boxing needs is another high-profile fight that under-delivers because…
It Fuels “Boxing Is Dead” Talk
Despite being a centuries-old sport with a rich history of brave and athletic fighters, boxing has been declared dead more times than Rasputin.
Despite a fanbase that continues to buy into fights big and small, the floundering state of the heavyweight division and the cultural ascent of MMA has many mainstream outlets constantly, and redundantly, declaring the sport “dead.”
If the Pacquiao-Mayweather fight doesn’t happen due to promotional issues, then those same pundits have another, high-profile example of how the business of boxing is ruining the sport of boxing.
If it does happen and it fails to live up to expectations, the mainstream media will have more ammunition to declare boxing antiquated and irrelevant.
The chances of both of these scenarios playing out is very likely, and neither one will benefit boxing’s public image in the slightest.
Neither Man Is in Their Prime
It’s clear that Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao are the best fighters in the world right now, regardless of weight class.
That said, both have begun to show signs of slowing down as they enter their 30s. Despite their growing win streaks, both Mayweather and Pacquiao are clearly in the third and final acts of their Hall-of-Fame worthy careers.
While Floyd is still the slickest defensive specialist in the game, the concussive shot he took in the second round of his fight with Shane Mosley wouldn’t have found its way through his guard five or six years ago.
Similarly, the ferocious Pacquiao who steamrolled the likes of Erik Morales and Marco Antonio Barrera wouldn’t have allowed Mosley to coast through their bout, he would have finished him and done it decisively.
If both fighters continue to regress, by the time we get this matchup, both fighters will be far removed from their primes and the fight will be all but guaranteed to under-deliver
There Are so Many Competitive MatchUps on the Horizon
For all of the attention paid to the potential Pacquiao-Mayweather fight, there are dozens of matchups on the horizon that guarantee exciting, competitive and meaningful fights.
Young fighters like James Kirkland, Yuriorkis Gamboa, Nonito Donaire and Andre Ward all made big statements last year and are poised to continue to inject the sport with excitement in 2012.
Even if Mayweather-Pacquiao isn't made this year, there are several fights on the horizon that should be receiving the lion's share of our attention as a community of fans.
Kirkland-Molina, Maidana-Alexander, Froch-Bute and the Ortiz-Berto and Lopez-Salido sequels should all deliver excitement and help define the careers of these young fighters.
More importantly, those fights should have us talking about boxing for the right reasons, instead of discussing promoters and purse bids, we'll be discussing the in-ring action.
So let's table the "super-fight" talk until it actually becomes a reality, and even if it does, let's remember that one fight will never define the entire sport.