Boxing

Inside The Wheelhouse: Calling out Mayweather

Floyd MayweatherI love boxing. I love watching boxing. And yet again, the sport shoots itself in the foot by not giving the fans what they want.

According to ESPN.com, Top Rank promoter Bob Arum announced that, “The fight’s off.” The fight in question is the potential super-duper-mega-huge match between the two best pound-for-pound fighters in the world, Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather Jr. Both fresh off of impressive victories in 2009 and both saying they want this fight to happen. The deal that was on the table would, most likely, not only shatter pay-per-view records and generate a possible $200 million in revenue, but net each fighter in the neighborhood of $40 million each. Each! And you can’t iron out details for $40M?

Everything was set. The date. The venue. The purse. The gloves. Until drug testing came into play. There are rules about urine testing set by the Nevada Athletic Commission, so those aren’t up for discussion. But on the subject of blood, there was a divide. Pacquiao agreed to 3 blood tests: at the beginning of the press tour, 30 days before, and right after the fight. Mayweather insisted on Olympic-style, totally random drug testing throughout and then alleged that Pacquiao was not entirely clean. (“It leaves me with great doubt as to the level of fairness I would be facing in the ring that night.” – Floyd Maywather Jr, December 23, 2009) Pacquiao is superstitious about drawing blood too close to a fight, but he did propose the compromise of a test 24 days before the fight. Mayweather refused. They tried mediation. Mayweather refused. On the basis of the drug testing.

Mayweather doesn’t want to fight him. Pure and simple. Pacquiao is the only fighter who can beat him. And not only beat him, but destroy him. And he knows it. I said it on the air when he beat up Juan Manuel Marquez for 12 rounds in September. I said it to anyone who would listen when he retired. So I am convinced that his un-retirement, these negotiations, and the PED allegations are all a set up by Mayweather try and save face. And even if he relents and actually steps in the ring in the future, he’s set up the perfect excuse. That Pacquiao must have cheated to beat him.

Mayweather cherishes his undefeated record so much that he is willing to walk away from $40M. He talks all the time about how everything he has is paid for, all the money he has, his cars, his house, all the money he has, and…all the money he has. So maybe…and I can’t even believe I’m writing this…$40 million doesn’t actually matter to him. $40 million doesn’t buy him the one thing he wants – to be known as one of the greatest fighters of all time, if not the best. And one loss may take that away from him. He can say for years he was the best fighter in the world and that no one could beat him. He fought Oscar de la Hoya, Ricky Hatton, Marquez… Fought ‘em all and never lost! In 20 years, will we remember a fight that didn’t happen? Pacquiao has 3 loses, how could he be better? Mayweather is betting on history to declare him the best, but only if he avoids Pacquiao.

So now its time for lawsuits and jabs in the press from both sides, which is typical. Though I have a question for Oscar de la Hoya, who posted a blog on The Ring magazine, casting doubt on Pacquiao’s PED cleanliness – have you ever had Olympic-style, blood testing before any of your fights? If not, how do we know you were clean? See how easy it is to launch allegations?

Hopefully, this gets worked out and boxing fans get the fight we want. And the fight boxing needs. – “The Sweet Nasty” Chris Cause

Chris Cause is the co-host for the “Wheelhouse Radio” program that airs every Sunday – Thursday @ 8pm ET/5pm PT at www.blogtalkradio.com/thewheelhouse and at www.errorfm.com @ 2am ET/11pm PT

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Eric G.

Eric is the owner and editor-in-chief of the Camel Clutch Blog. Eric has worked in the pro wrestling industry since 1995 as a ring announcer in ECW and a commentator/host on television, PPV, and home video. Eric also hosted Pro Wrestling Radio on terrestrial radio from 1998-2009. Check out some of Eric's work on his IMDB bio and Wikipedia. Eric has an MBA from Temple University's Fox School of Business.

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