We have patiently waited for the Pacquiao-Mayweather throwdown for long enough. But unfortunately, the two bickering sides can't seem to agree. Is this typical boxing hype or have we reached a real dead end? Negotiations seem to have shut down yet again because of a stubborn Money Mayweather promotions team, but hopefully the two parties can reconcile their differences and give the people what they want.
A discrepancy between drug test preference couldn’t possibly still be getting in the way of this fight, right? The bout was originally called off due to disagreements about Olympic style drug tests that Floyd Mayweather's camp wanted performed by the United States Anti-Doping Agency. Pacquiao spurned the demands for blood testing up until the fight, stating that it would give the bigger Mayweather an advantage. Plus, Manny doesn’t like of needles. Hoepfully these doping quarrels will wind up neither here nor there, but don’t be surprised if some form Mayweather cheating-paranoia blocks the fight from happening.
Bob Arum is Manny Pacquiao’s advisor and manager of Top Rank Promotions. Over the past 40 years, this company has backed the likes of Oscar De La Hoya, Roberto Duran, Joe Frazier, Marvin Hagler, Sugar Ray Leonard and Muhammad Ali. Pretty much everybody. Because of his tremendous success and litany of top-ranked clients, Arum has long been able to keep TV money in-house through orchestrated fights between fighters currently employed by Top Rank.
However, not long ago, Arum also helped manage Floyd Mayeather’s career. That relationship ended in 2007 when Floyd accused him of both underpaying and under-marketing him while exploting his talents and manipulating officials.
According to Floyd, Arum is looking for 50/50 Pay-Per-View split on a potential fight between Pacquiao and himself. This type of deal will never be acceptable for the big-headed Mayweather camp. So until Floyd decides to lower his asking price and sign the dotted line, Arum will continue to put together fights between his own best men, and both parties will continue to make money. Just not in the same arena, or at the same time.
One of Pacquiao’s biggest advantages would be that his trainer, Freddie Roach, has face Mayweather before. Not of course in the corner of Manny Pacquiao, but in that of Oscar De La Hoya. Perhaps Freddie’s distinct knowledge of Floyd will allow his fighter to strategize and prepare in ways that the Mayweathers cannot. Or perhaps the opportunity for revenge would provide Roach and the Pacquiao camp with enough motivation to take the fight.
Pretty Boy Floyd doesn’t fight much these days. Today, it seems as though the 33 year-old fighter can no longer handle the rigors of being in the ring two or three times a year. He’s fought just twice since taking a 21-month retirement during most of 2008 and 2009. Manny, on the other hand, who is 32 himself, is routinely destroying his opponents. One of Floyd’s biggest criticisms has always been that he is doesn’t have the heart to match up against the sport’s greatest while they are still great. With the prime years of his career beginning to dwindle, both Floyd’s heart and his hands will be in doubt.
You see, Mr. Floyd Mayweather is more than just a boxer, he is a renaissance man. Whether he’s getting choke slammed on WWE Monday by the Big Show, Dancing With the Stars, or just slanging t-shirts on his website, Mr. Mayweather knows where the checks are. In the ring, his last three fights have made him over $300 million. Outside of the ring, he stands to keep keep a solid income long after his career is over. So, the truth is, Floyd really is his own boss, and he doesn’t need to take this Pacquiao fight to put his kids through college.
Most of Money Mayweather’s marketability is relentlessly tied to his undefeated record. It’s hard to go at a guy that’s never lost. 41 fights into his career, and we’re still looking for someone to out-box Floyd. Although his record remains unblemished, it has never looked more in jeopardy until talk of Paquiao-Mayweather appeared a couple years ago. As far as the progression of boxing, and the drama of sports, really, the ultimate goal is to locate a fighter that can knock Money Mayweather off his thrown. Mayweather is special, and we have to respect that, but with that at stake, Floyd will take more than enough time to make sure that never happens.
If Floyd does in fact skip out on a $60-80 million dollar payday, which would probably negate everything thought we knew about him, it would be because of that other-worldly self-image. Mayweather often likes to boast that he is bigger than the sport and if he leaves, boxing would be dead. While this might be true, it would just reaffirm how childish the Money Mayweather management team is, and would reflect greed, selfishness and everything wrong with professional athletes today. That being said, if this fight does not go down, it will be Floyd’s ego, the same ego that took him to the top, that unfortunately prevents it from ever happening.
"Let me tell you how it was. At Christmas we never had a Christmas. My mother would go out and steal presents for me. She tried but it was hard and that's why I look after her now.”
When Floyd Mayweather retired in 2008, it was because he was banged up, but also because he wanted to grow closer to his family. Floyd Jr’s personal problems with his father and uncles have been well publicized, but as a father himself, he has said he wants to devote more time into his children’s lives and actually see them grow up. It’s hard to do that when you’re training 10 months out of the year for fights, so when he says he wants to be there for his family, it’s something you should actually take his word for.
As far as speed and quickness, the closest fighters to Pacquiao that Mayweather has faced are Zab Judah and Shane Mosley. But Zab Judah wasn’t ready yet, and Shane Mosley was past his prime. But like those two, Pacquiao is a southpaw, which means Floyd should definitely fear the straight left hand of the Philipino. At this point in his career, Manny also has youth and combination punching to his advantage, which may come in handy in the later rounds. Pacquiao is definitely the most dynamic fighter Floyd would ever have to face. Maybe what erks Pretty Boy the most is that he may have finally met his match.
Floyd is unquestionably the highest grossing boxer, and maybe one of the most recognizable athletes, in sports today. But what most people take for granted is that he is also one of the most shrewd businessmen. He says himself, “My middle name Money for a reason”. Don’t be surprised if you see this fight resurface in May of 2011, when Floyd feels the hype has reached its absolute boiling point. Routinely raking in 8 figures or better for his bouts, Mayweather, who is always quick to point out that he is his own boss, understands that patience really is a virtue.
A fight between them could have sold three million pay-per-view purchases and made each man upwards of $60 million.