Sharkie’s Machine: Listening to Floyd “Money” Mayweather Jr
By Frank Gonzalez Jr., Doghouse Boxing (March 29, 2008)   
On ESPN’s Friday Night Fights this week, the guest fighter at the talk table with Robert Flores (not Brian Kinney) was Floyd Mayweather Jr., who recently (and appropriately) changed his nickname from “Pretty Boy” to “Money.” Floyd is a polarizing figure among fight fans—they either love him, or can’t stand him but no matter how you see him, he IS a great fighter. Floyd can sell PPV tickets because half the fans want to witness his greatness and the other half can’t wait to see him get knocked out. His brash arrogance resonates with the same fans who loved Roy Jones Jr. with blinding loyalty.

Floyd got a lot of time in the long segment to promote his next business venture, a Pay-Per-View, WWE “Pro” Wrestling match against some huge guy named, “The Big Show” who is seven feet tall and weighs over four hundred pounds. This is set for next Sunday and Floyd wants us boxing fans to order this show. When asked by Flores what attracted Floyd to this wrestling “opportunity,” Floyd said it was about doing something, ‘outside the box.’

Floyd said his team came up with a great game plan to, ‘get outside the box.’ Towards the end of his lengthy answer, he mentioned that he’s getting 20 Million for his part in it all. As usual, the truth comes last. He went on to tell how he was a fan of wrestling growing up, listing a few names of wrestlers, adding how happy he is to now be part of it.

Floyd said this event is the Biggest vs. the Best. He went on to talk about how he’s an entertainer and that is what fans want. It was like de javu, as I recall Roy Jones Jr. saying the same thing when asked about his ridiculous ring entrance with him rapping and a bunch of Dallas cheerleaders dancing in leather cowboy outfits at a Portland venue sponsored by NIKE.

Maybe it sounds crazy but I think what fight fans want to see is the best fighters fighting the best fighters. We don’t want to see bad match ups, even if it does involve fading name-brand fighters. We don’t want to see them sing or dance or do the pro Wrestling circuit. I’m sure not one male fight fan gave a damn that Oscar DLH won a Latin music Grammy for his singing a few years ago.

As a boxing fan, I’m disappointed. I would rather see Floyd fight Miguel Cotto, Antonio Margarito and maybe even Carlos Quintana, who recently rose in stature after beating another guy Floyd shies away from in Paul Williams, who was undefeated until he met Quintana.

If Floyd wants to be a circus show, and fight choreographed, fake fights in a fake sport, that’s his business. That he can get a free pass for NOT fighting Miguel Cotto or at least the other champions in his division in “Pro” boxing makes me wonder how close boxing has come to look like “Pro” Wrestling. What’s next? Fighters in spandex leotards?

Other marquee fighters have done this type of stuff before but mostly when they were down on their luck, like Mike Tyson. Even Joe Louis, who did whatever he could to feed his family as Uncle Sam was on a quest to destroy Louis financially via the IRS. Floyd is a millionaire, so I guess he needs the money. Powerful god money is.

Floyd told Robert Flores that it was his idea to make HBO’s special series, “24/7,” which served as a promotion vehicle for his last two fights with De La Hoya and Hatton. Floyd said he didn’t get much credit for that venture. With all the credit Floyd gives himself, there may not be room for any more.

Floyd bragged that he will earn 170 million this year, ‘without an endorsement’ deal. On the grapevine note, Floyd also informed us that Roger Mayweather remains his trainer in spite of rumors spread by whoever. He said the whole controversy stemmed from his not wanting his uncle Roger training Steve Forbes, who is Oscar’s next warm up opponent, as he readies up to make several million more with the second installment of Oscar vs. Floyd on PPV.

Floyd said Roger knows the method for beating Oscar and as such, it would risk Floyd’s ability to rake in millions in a rematch with Oscar, which is figured to happen in late September. When money is your sole motivation, this is a logical rationale. Flores said, “It’s a good thing you changed your nickname to “Money.” I agree.

Mayweather vs. DLH sucked the first time, as neither man appeared willing to mix it up very much. If ever a fight was just about money, that was it. It certainly wasn’t about pride, the boxing standings or anything significant. Their first fight was a big money maker but failed to prove worth the price of the PPV. There is absolutely no justification for them having a rematch, outside of greed, which is a force powerful enough to transcend bullshit into truth.

Floyd said, “I’ll be honest, Oscar don’t like me at all, and I don’t care much for him. I don’t like him at all. This is a real beef. It goes back to when, since, at first when he was with Top Rank, I loved, I liked the guy. One day he said he wants to fight like Floyd Mayweather, and then he says he hates this kid, and when he gets in the biggest fight of his life, he’s going to freeze. He must realize; this is the biggest fight of his life also.”

All that money and no speaking coach in Floyd’s entourage?

What he said was contradictory and dishonest but we know fighters say lots of untrue things until after the fight is over and then they talk about how all those words were just part of the fight promotion. Just like all the garbage he talked about Ricky Hatton before their fight compared to all the admiration talk after the fight.

We fans would be suckers to buy the Mayweather vs. De La Hoya II on PPV.

Listening to Floyd talk about himself reminds me of our last P4P king, Roy Jones Jr., who was fond of speaking of himself in the third person until he got humbled after being knocked out cold by two mediocre class fighters named Antonio Tarver and Glengoffe Johnson. All after Roy rode the P4P gravy train for about a decade. Roy took the safest route to big money. Who knows how good he really was after he stopped fighting good fighters?

Floyd has proven his boxing skills are special and he hasn’t met his match yet. I predict that he never will because with all his current prestige, he can pick and choose who he will fight, just like Roy Jones Jr. and Oscar De La Hoya did for so long. To his credit, Oscar was always a gentleman and mostly fought the biggest names in his division while they were hot, like Trinidad, Vargas, Hopkins, Mosley, Quartey, Pernell Whitaker and more.

I don’t hear Mayweather calling out Miguel Cotto. If pressed to fight Cotto or Margarito, Floyd may simply retire for a while and make a comeback when the ruckus dies down and go on and pick who he wants to fight. That wouldn’t be cool.

To Floyd’s credit, he’s faced a consistently better level of competition than his predecessor Roy Jones Jr. did, but just like Roy, Floyd has never faced a fighter considered the most dangerous guy in the division. The smaller Hatton could be considered an exception though. The late Diego Corrales (May he rest in peace) was for Floyd what James Toney was for Roy. Other than that, most of their fights were boring, predictable mismatches.

Like Roy, who went after arguably the worst Heavyweight champion of that era in John Ruiz, so as to elevate the notion of his greatness, Floyd is going after a huge guy in a different venue that’s not even a real combat sport. Some may think, ‘Damn, that guy’s a giant, he’s going to hurt Floyd!’ but worry not, its Pro Wrestling, which means it’s all fake. They’ll rehearse their entire fight and no one should get hurt because, it’s all scripted—even though Floyd said it will be a “no holds barred” fight and that he doesn’t know what The Big Show is bringing and vise versa. Yeah, sure.

I haven’t watched wrestling since I was a little kid and after realizing how fake it was my interest faded. Entertainment is what they call it these days but it looks more like male pornography, with loud mouthed muscle men in make-up; grappling each other while wearing tights. Disgusting.

Floyd’s lust for money is insatiable. We should all be proud. After all, life is primarily about money, right?

Cotto is the man Floyd must fight and beat if wants to continue calling himself the best p4p fighter. Cotto is also a big attraction who puts asses in the seats. Can you imagine how much money a Mayweather vs. Cotto at Madison Square Garden in New York City would bring in? So why not fight Cotto next?

Floyd is not the best pound for pound fighter since he shows no interest in fighting the best fighters in his own division, like Miguel Cotto, Antonio Margarito, Carlos Quintana and even Paul Williams. Before Quintana exposed Williams, Floyd showed zero interest in even mentioning Williams’ name.

How do we buy into all this nonsense?

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