Upon hearing that Floyd Mayweather did not have to report to serve his sentence until June today, I'm sure fight fans around the world all thought the same thing. Finally, this frees up Floyd's schedule for May and will finally allow him and Manny Pacquiao to stage the biggest fight that can be made in boxing.
However, this idea was quickly squashed when Bob Arum came out and said that Floyd was on Manny's radar, but not for the time being, delaying the fight to early 2013 if at all. It seems that literally everyone, including Floyd and his team, boxing fans, Freddie Roach, and Manny Pacquiao finally want the fight to be made. What could possibly hold up a fight that could bring in this much money to all parties involved?
The answer is two words. Bob Arum. Arum said that Pacquiao could fight in either May or June, depending on various factors, but upon hearing of Floyd's continuation of his sentence, backtracked and said that Manny needed more time to heal from his cuts sustained two months ago in November in the fight against Marquez.
When this excuse, and that's what it is, an excuse, was attacked and deemed to be illegitimate, Arum fired back by saying that the 40,000 person stadium that would need to be built for the fight to be staged outdoors in Vegas can't be completed until the end of May. This whole thing is just becoming really really frustrating and is really killing the sport.
I wonder what Arum would say if Las Vegas was able to put up the stadium in time for May 5th? What excuse would he pull then? I have a lot of friends who are casual fans of the sport, many of whom say that they refuse to care about boxing until this fight is made. While I disagree with their sentiments, I can see where they are coming from.
Imagine if when early February rolled around and the Packers and Patriots were set to play in the Super Bowl. All of a sudden Roger Goodell comes out and comes up with some reason for pushing the game back, but that fans could enjoy arena football and the UFL for the time being instead. Would casual football fans care and settle for watching lower level football? No, they just would stop watching and tune into other stuff until the big game finally came on.
Arum really needs to just stop with the excuses and make the fight. Until this happens, the sport will continue to suffer until fans simply give up and only hardcore boxing fans remain. Bob, just make the fight happen. I promise, you'll make plenty of money and more importantly, it would make fans everywhere very happy.