I swore I wouldn’t do it. There was no way that I was going to give in. Manny Pacquiao was fighting. If he won, and looked good doing it, I wouldn’t succumb to writing about a possible Mayweather vs Pacquiao matchup in 2014. I had been disappointed on more than one occasion. Everyone had. 2010, 2011, 2012, for three years fans had expected and hoped the fight would happen. It never did. There was no reason to write about a fight that would never happen. No reason to give everyone hope. Then, when Pacquiao dominated Brandon Rios Saturday night, the Mayweather-Pacquiao tweets started. Fans began to wonder. Writers began posting their articles. I’d go out somewhere and people would ask if the fight was finally going to happen. People, even non-boxing fans, were still interested. Reality set in, and I just can’t help myself.
For the record, I honestly don’t know if this fight will ever happen. I can only break down what I see and hear. I wasn’t on the inside of the negotiations for the last three years. And unless you were someone that was you can’t clearly say why the fight didn’t happen. Even if you were, you can’t really say it. Egos, the blame game, trainers, the fighters, and the promoters all played their part in the fiasco. What I will get too though is one theory that I always felt was the deal breaker in why this fight didn’t happen and whether or not it will now.
Let’s start with some recent activity. After Pacquiao defeated Rios Saturday night Bob Arum said that he was ready to make a Mayweather vs Pacquiao showdown. Believe him? Not many people do. Most would say he is using Mayweather’s name to help promote Pacquiao’s next fight.
“If everyone can put the bull aside, it can happen.” Arum would say. Yet, Arum would go on to announce April 12th as Pacquiao’s return date knowing that Mayweather’s is May 3rd. Well if he was really serious about trying to make a Mayweather vs Pacquiao fight why even mention a different fight date? Why not try to make it happen first? Sounds fishy to me. Showtime Executive Stephen Espinoza, who has some control over Mayweather’s list of opponents, is ready to call out Arum on his bluff.
“I’m willing to make the fight. I’ll reach out to Bob Arum and Top Rank this week.” Espinoza would say when responding to fans on twitter. “I believe him zero percent. For some reason HBO doesn’t have an exclusive contract to Manny Pacquiao so there is absolutely no reason the fight can’t happen on Showtime.” He would go on to say. Anyone out there believe Arum is going to take Pacquiao over to Showtime and screw HBO out of the deal completely? I sure don’t. Even if they aren’t contracted to Pacquiao I don’t see Arum doing it.
In order for a Mayweather vs Pacquiao showdown to happen a few things need to be done. Nothing is impossible right? Maybe so, but making this fight may be pretty darn close. First, Top Rank president Bob Arum and Golden Boy CEO Richard Schaefer would have to talk, which means that one would have to reach out to the other first. Yea. Good luck with that. It’s no secret that they despise each other. Even if Espinoza did have success in reaching out to Top Rank he would have some pretty big egos to have to mingle through. Schaefer made it perfectly clear that he would never again work with Bob Arum on a fight after the first couple times the Mayweather-Pacquiao showdown was attempted to be made. I know I know, to say “never again” is a strong statement. I for one don’t believe that they will never work together again. Let’s just say that right now they are very mad at each other.
There is one thing that could make them talk though. Or one person I should say. Floyd Mayweather himself. This brings me to my theory. The main reason why this fight never happened. The fight has always lied in Floyd Mayweather’s fans. All Floyd has to do is call Schaefer and say something like this:
“Hey, I want to fight Manny Pacquiao next. Make it happen.”
Well, that brings us to impossible thing number two. History shows that Mayweather has never truly wanted the fight with Pacquiao. He showed a ton of smoking mirrors to the public making them think he was trying to make the fight happen, but unless you are a biased Mayweather fan then it is quite easy to see through the deception. By the way, I am a huge Mayweather fan. I’ve been a Mayweather fan before %80 of his fans knew he even existed. But even I could see that Mayweather never truly wanted this fight. Perhaps he would have fought Pacquiao had he initially agreed to PED testing back in December of 2009 when it was first brought up. However, after Pacquiao had finally agreed to it less than one year later, it’s been Mayweather finding excuse after excuse for not making the fight. Even then, the PED testing was an excuse not to get into the ring with him. And for everyone out there saying, “Oh, well he offered him $40 million dollars.” C’mon. He offered him $40 million dollars for a fight that could gross $250 million. And that $40 million cut his promoter Bob Arum out of it too. During a time where Mayweather and Pacquiao were on equal selling ground that offer was laughable. If Tom Brady and Peyton Manning took purses for games, would one deserve 100k while the other got $1 million? It was a bogus offer that Mayweather knew Pacquiao would deny so he could turn around to the public and say, “I offered him 40 million and he said no.”
I don’t one hundred percent put the blame on Mayweather though. Bob Arum never truly wanted the fight either. Again, at first he did try. However afterwards he was content to just sit back and allow Mayweather to make demands without attempting a “serious” counter offer. He never truly tried to talk with them about making the fight after 2010. Then there were the trainers saying stuff, the rumors of false negotiations being made, and tons of other little factors that just kept annoying everyone involved in trying to really make it happen.
In the end, it’s impossible to tell from the outside looking in who is to blame. There are so many factors, so many stories. My theory though, and the one thing that I always felt, was that if Floyd Mayweather really wanted this fight to happen it would have. If he wants it to happen right now it will. It’s that simple. Floyd Mayweather is the face of boxing. When he wants something it gets done. Top Rank, Golden Boy, Showtime, HBO, none of that drama matters. He is above all of it. That was really what it all came down to. Did Floyd Mayweather ever really want to fight Manny Pacquiao? Does he want to now? Is 2014 the time? Will we finally see Floyd Mayweather vs Manny Pacquiao? If the recent words of Floyd Sr. are anything to go by then it’s not looking good.
“Beating Rios doesn’t deserve a fight with Floyd. He needs to beat someone like Canelo or Guerrero.” Floyd Sr. was quoted saying earlier this week. His words couldn’t be more contradictory to what he stated not even two months ago. After Mayweather Jr easily dismantled Canelo back in September, he was quoted saying something entirely different.
“Pacquiao is the last man standing. I would love for my son to face him.”
Those were the words said by Mayweather Sr weeks after the September 14th victory. So what changed his mind? It’s these types of quotes that get out to the public that has hindered the ability to make the fight to begin with. It’s these contradictory states by not just Floyd Sr. but by everyone involved that gets the media and fans all worked up. I don’t believe we will see a Mayweather vs Pacquiao fight next, and whether or not we ever see it, I can honestly say I have no idea. It’s just one of those things that we are going to have to wait and see on.