Roger Mayweather: “If Pacquiao don’t got sh*t in his system, then why do you worry about being tested anyway?”

boxingby Geoffrey Ciani - This week’s 80th edition of On the Ropes Boxing Radio featured an exclusive interview with boxing trainer Roger Mayweather who currently trains his nephew Floyd Mayweather Junior. Roger recently led Floyd to an impressive one-sided unanimous decision against Sugar Shane Mosley. Since that time, public demand for a fight between Floyd and Manny Pacquiao has reached an all time high. Roger spoke about the possibility of such a fight taking place and numerous other topics pertaining to the current boxing scene. Here is some of what he had to say:

On Floyd’s impressive victory against Sugar Shane Mosley:
“I already knew he was going to whop his ass. It wasn’t nothing new to me. I know because I trained a guy that beat him four times. Skills pay the bills, that’s it. So when you start talking about Floyd and Shane, I mean he had the performance he was supposed to have against a guy of that nature.”

On whether he thought Floyd would fight the type of he fought coming forward against Mosley:
“Yep. Let me tell you something—number one, the fight was basically as far as skill-wise and boxing ability, my nephew boxes too good for him anyway so I was never worried about him outboxing Shane Mosley, but the thing of it was, the only thing that concerned me was what he had in his system. The minute they tested him for steroids and he came out negative I knew how the fight was going to be from the beginning. I know because I had a guy that beat him four times, so it wasn’t nothing new actually for me..

On whether he was worried when Shane stunned Floyd in round two:
“Well I mean, Floyd’s really never been put down. He can take a shot even though he’s gone up in weight classes. Shane Mosley caught him with a good shot, but anytime you fight another talented fighter those things happen. I mean, you take one of the greatest heavyweights ever, Ali. Ali’s been on the ground about four or five times, but he still found a way to win and that’s what one of the keys about boxing is—finding a way to win.”

On whether he believes a fight between Floyd and Manny Pacquiao will happen:
“I don’t see why it won’t happen. Anytime a guy getting $50 million don’t want to fight, that tells you something about him. How would a guy turn down that kind of money? Why would he turn down that kind of money? Remember, he said he was going to fight Floyd but the only thing with him, he wants to fight Floyd but he doesn’t want to take the test. He don’t want to take the test, so what does that tell you? If a guy don’t want to take the test when he’s getting $50 million, then that’s all it tells you. He must got something wrong with him. I know he ain’t crazy. Anytime a guy, first off—all fighters take the tests. All fighters take the tests. They take drug tests, HIV tests, they take them tests anyway. But here’s a guy saying he don’t want to take the tests a couple of days before the fight. He wants to take the test, but he don’t want to take it a couple of days before the fight. Well that’s generally how you take tests, anyway. So why is this guy getting this kind of money? Remember, he knocked out dudes that Floyd went the distance with. He knocked out Ricky Hatton, he knocked out De La Hoya, he struggled with Marquez, but that’s it. Here’s a guy that knocked out guys out that Floyd didn’t knockout but yet he’s worried about taking the test? I know he’s worried about taking the test and that’s what the sport’s about.”

On whether he believes there is any validity to Pacquiao just having a fear of needles:
“He has a fear of needles, huh? He’s got a fear of needles? How do you take an HIV test? You need a needle, right? You need a needle to take an HIV test. He had to take an HIV test before because he wouldn’t be allowed to fight in the state of Nevada. You see? So all of that about he don’t want to take the test and he’s afraid of needles—well, how are they going to take your blood then if you’re afraid of needles?”

On whether he thinks there will be straight testing or a cutoff date if the fight between Mayweather and Pacquiao is made:
“Well I believe it’s going to be a cutoff date because number one, a guy ain’t going to take no test no week before no fight and then go and take a test right after the fight. I believe they’re going to do Olympic style testing. With Olympic style testing, they test you randomly like that but it’s not a big thing. If he don’t got shit in his system, then why do you worry about being tested anyway? The only time a person has fears about being tested is because they got something in them that they ain’t supposed to have in them. That’s it, because to be honest—in a million years he would never whop Floyd, period. Floyd takes the test. I mean, Floyd don’t mind taking the test. He took the test a couple of days before him and Sugar Shane Mosley fought. What’s the problem? That’s what you do as a fighter, anyway. You take the test a couple of days before the fight, boom, fight then. Since they’re hopefully doing that Olympic style drug testing, I guess you’re going to find out what he’s going to get.”

On Floyd’s recent claims that he would want a 60-40 split in his favor to fight Pacquiao:
“I think it should be 60-40. Why wouldn’t it be? Floyd ain’t never lost. Floyd ain’t never lost, this ‘mo’s been knocked out twice. He’s been knocked out twice when he was 105 pounds, so why would they come to the same agreement about the same amount of money? Floyd ain’t never tasted defeat.”

On whether he thinks they can reach an agreement where the winner gets 60% of the purse:
“I believe that. I believe that can be possible, I can’t see why not. I can’t see why not because if it’s based on money, if you’re trying to talk about what he accomplished, he ain’t never accomplished no more than what Floyd accomplished. Floyd never lost anyway, so the thing of it is coming to an agreement, but I’m sure anytime a fight that makes that kind of money they’re going to come to an agreement. I can’t see why they wouldn’t come to an agreement. Wouldn’t you think they would come to an agreement? (Jenna J—“I would hope so.”) With that kind of money, it’s almost impossible for them not to come to some type of agreement.”

On the potential magnitude of a fight between Mayweather and Pacquiao:
“This is the biggest fight. Well, put it this way—the biggest fight in the history of boxing today, what was the biggest fight in the history of boxing? (Jenna J—“ It was Mayweather versus De La Hoya.”) You understand that, right? Okay now, here’s a fight that’s even bigger than that. Here’s a fight bigger than that, so you have to come to an agreement. The only way a person won’t come to an agreement for that kind of money is that something is wrong with him or he don’t want to take the test. That’s it. That’s the only reason a person wouldn’t come to an agreement, because with all that money on the table you got to be crazy. My nephew ain’t turning it down. He takes the test, and we’ll see what he can do.”

On whether he believes Floyd can knock Pacquiao out in the event they had a 60-40 split similar to the Jones-Hopkins rematch where the winner would get 60% if he won inside the distance:
“Nope, I don’t think he can knock him out. He’s already been knocked out at 105 pounds. What you think? He can’t knock him out? He’s already been knocked out twice, anyway. So you don’t think my nephew can knock him out? He’s already been knocked out at 105 pounds. So you don’t think my nephew can knock him out at 147? (G. Ciani—“No, no I didn’t say that. I think that he possibly could, I was wondering if you thought he could? Because Pacquiao hasn’t been knocked out in awhile.”) I don’t think anything. I know he can knock him out—period. Once Pacquiao takes that test, he’s going to get a beating he ain’t never had before because there ain’t no way in the world a guy swinging that wild is coming after my nephew, period. My nephew, in this day and this time, he’s the most skilled fighter in the sport of boxing—period.”

On whether he believes Floyd could have stopped Shane and if so, why he thinks Mosley laws able to last the distance:
“It ain’t about why he didn’t. I mean obviously Shane was doing a lot of fucking holding. That’s why he didn’t get stopped. So when a fighter’s holding, that means he’s hard to fight somebody that’s holding and as you look at the fight as it goes on, boom, he was holding. So since the guy’s holding, my nephew was pressing him but he still he would never let my nephew get off. He would get off a few punches, boom, but the first thing he do is grab and hold him. You ain’t never seen him do that with any other fighters. Shane Mosley is an offensive fighter. After he hit my nephew, he ain’t never win another round. He never won another round after that. So it ain’t about he couldn’t stop him, it’s that Shane wasn’t going to get stopped regardless because Shane was holding on and it’s hard to fight somebody that’s holding and trying to keep from getting knocked out. That’s why a lot of guys when they fought Mike Tyson, they didn’t get knocked out because they were holding and it’s hard to fight somebody that’s basically holding you all the time because you’re not trying to get in a confrontation.”

On comments made by his brother, Floyd Mayweather Senior, in a previous episode of ‘On the Ropes’ where he mentioned he did not like Floyd fighting southpaws:
“You know why he don’t like Floyd fighting southpaws? It’s because he can’t train Floyd for a southpaw. Floyd beat every southpaw out there. Didn’t he beat Zab Judah? Didn’t he beat Shamrba Mitchell? Didn’t he beat DeMarcus Corley and all them world champions? He beat all of them. Okay, then. It ain’t that Floyd can’t fight a southpaw. Floyd whopped four southpaw world champions in a row. I know, because I trained him to fight a southpaw and it ain’t no different than fighting a right hander, period.”

On potential match-ups for Floyd against Paul Williams or Sergio Martinez:
“The fight with Paul Williams don’t make sense because it don’t make money anyway. He ain’t got no name. The whole object is to fight, when you’re on this status and you’re on this level, is to fight a fight that makes sense and the only fight that makes sense is Floyd and Pacquiao. That’s the only one that makes sense. I mean as far as them other dudes, they’ll make a fight but they don’t got no name. Who’s going to come and see them?”

On whether he believes it’s Pacquiao next or nothing for Floyd:
“That’s what I like think. I mean of course, he could fight somebody else, but I’m saying that I like to think that would be the fight. In time Pacquiao will do what he supposed to do and Floyd does what he’s supposed to do—why wouldn’t the fight go on? He fought everybody else. He fought Shane, he fought De La Hoya, he fought Ricky Hatton, he fought Marquez. Well hey, what’s the difference in him fighting Floyd if he’s that good? I can’t see why the fight wouldn’t possibly happen if the guy makes that kind of money.”

On whether he believes Manny Pacquiao represents the biggest threat to Floyd:
“Pacquiao don’t threaten Floyd period, at all. That’s a guy who’s been knocked out at 105 pounds. What the hell is he going to do to Floyd? Nothing. Listen—it ain’t about Floyd fighting Pacquiao, it’s about does Pacquiao want to fight Floyd. It ain’t about does Floyd want to fight Pacquiao. Floyd has no problems fighting Pacquiao. Floyd came off of an almost two year layoff and fought the guy he fought a draw with. That’s Marquez, didn’t he? Okay! So fighting Pacquiao ain’t no big thing. Fighting Pacquiao ain’t no big thing because Pacquiao ain’t got nothing for Floyd anyway. The only thing Pacquiao’s got for Floyd is one thing—he don’t want to take the drug test. So that tells you about what he’s got in him. It ain’t about does Floyd want to fight Pacquiao. Who wouldn’t want to fight him? Who wouldn’t want to fight him? You know? But hey, anytime you fight somebody you want to play on a fair playing field. That’s all that is. So it ain’t the whole thing about does Floyd want to fight Pacquiao. Forget about that because Floyd don’t give a damn who he fights. Pretty much, whatever makes money makes sense. Floyd is obviously way smarter than Pacquiao, number one. Number two, he don’t got the skills to whop Floyd, anyway. And number three, he don’t want to take a test. So all those things that you start talking about, about does Floyd want to fight Pacquiao, does Floyd want to fight this guy—no. You fight the guy who’s going to gross you the most money. That’s what boxing’s about. You don’t get to this level and say you want to fight that dude over there. You got to a level so that you get compensated for what you do. So if the guy don’t take the test then ain’t nobody got to tell nobody. If Pacquiao don’t take no drug test then that’s already taken care of. You ain’t even got to worry about whether him and Floyd are going to fight or whether they ain’t going to fight. If a guy don’t take the drug test then there ain’t nothing else to tell you. I mean that’s what tests are for. Tests are for to check what’s in your body. That’s it.”

On where he would rank Floyd in all-time sense given Floyd’s remarks that he believes he is greater than Sugar Ray Robinson and Muhammad Ali:
“All-time? Well, I can’t say he’s better than Ray Robinson. He’s got more skills than Ali, period. Remember, Ali don’t even throw body shots. I mean, I consider Ali the greatest heavyweight but he ain’t the greatest fighter. You got a guy like Ray Leonard who’s a great fighter. I mean he’s got more skills, naturally, than Muhammad Ali. My nephew’s got more skills than Ali, but Ali is still the greatest heavyweight but he ain’t the greatest fighter. The greatest fighter in my time, in my era—well I’ll tell you what, the greatest fighter had a record of 127-1. That’s the greatest fighter, period, and he won seven world championships—two welterweights, five middleweights. Who do you think that is? (Jenna J—“Yeah, that’s Sugar Ray Robinson. He almost won the light heavyweight championship, too.”) Alright then, hey listen—as an amateur he was 89-0 with 69 knockouts. Who’s going to break that record? He never got defeated as an amateur. My nephew’s a great fighter, but I mean, the time of boxing has changed since those days. Fighters can only fight maybe once a month now, but back in them days fighters were fighting. They didn’t have all these rules that you have now so fighters fought constantly pretty much. That’s why fighters back then had more fights than fighters today. A guy at 40-0 say he wins six or seven world championships, but Ray Robinson at that time he had a hundred and something fights. So you can’t compare the time now compared to the time then. You had more fighters then than you have now. It was a different time. You had the time with the depression the time with the recession way back then. You had more fighters back then anyway compared to what you got now and you had better fighters because they fought more often than fighters do today.”

On which fighter in boxing history he believes would give Floyd the most trouble:
“I already told you, I gave you the answer the first time, Sugar Ray Robinson. At welterweight, Ray Robinson. I mean, there are some other guys that would give him trouble. I’m saying, as far as welterweights you got a lot of fighters. You got Roberto Duran would give him problems, you got Sugar Ray Leonard would give him problems, you got Tommy Hearns would give him problems, you got Ray Robinson. I mean it ain’t just one fighter that I would consider that would give him problems. You got a lot of great fighters from the old days. Remember this, a guy comes from featherweight to win the featherweight title, the lightweight title, the welterweight title, and fought a draw for the middleweight. You know who that is? (Jenna J—“Armstrong, right?”) Alright. Okay, then. So you mean to tell me a guy like Armstrong wouldn’t give my nephew problems? Here’s a guy who went from 126 to middleweight. Have you ever seen a fighter do that today? You ain’t never seen someone from 126 pounds go all the way up to middleweight.”

On the fact that Pacquiao came up from 112 pounds all the way up to 147 pounds as it relates to Armstrong:
“No, no, no, no. He didn’t come from 112 to 147 because they had a catch weight on when they fought. De La Hoya weighed about 144 pounds. He wouldn’t fight De La Hoya at 147 so he ain’t never fought those dudes at their weight. He fought Marquez at his weight, but the rest of the guys he never fought at their weight. He made them come down in weight, and of course, I can understand why they come down because they look at him and see how small he is. But he didn’t fight De La Hoya at 147. My nephew fought De La Hoya at 154. Now what do you think is more his natural weight, 147 or 154? Remember, Pacquiao fought him, after he fought my nephew, at a catch weight where he tells you at what weight you’re supposed to come in at. He never fought no De La Hoya at no 147 pounds. He fought De La Hoya at 145-144 pounds.”

On the fact that the De La Hoya-Pacquiao fight was indeed contractually agreed to take place at 147:
“It may have been in the contract but he said De La Hoya can’t come in weighing over 145 pounds. That’s what he said. So regardless of what the fight was contracted at, we’re talking about at the weigh-in, that’s what De La Hoya had to come in. De La Hoya didn’t come in at 145, he came in at 144. So anytime a guy comes in and he fights at welterweight and you’re trying to make a guy come down, how can that be? How are you going to control a guy that comes down in weight if you’re fighting at 147 anyway? I’m just saying, I mean here’s a guy, he dictates that weight you’re going to come in at. If you’re fighting at 147 and you’re the 147 pound champion, all the guys got to weigh in at 147. After that, it doesn’t make no difference at what weight he weighs.”

On Pacquiao’s most recent victory against Joshua Clottey:
“I mean he had a decent win over Clottey, too, though. I give him credit for a guy coming from that small in weight doing what he does. I mean, I know how he does it, but still.”

On whether he agrees with his brother Floyd Senior that if Floyd Junior fights Pacquiao that it should be his last fight as a professional boxer:
“Well, I mean, I can’t make a judgment on a fighter to decide what he’s going to do. I mean beat Pacquiao, boom. I mean truly where else can you go? At the same time, I can’t say oh well you need to retire. He has to make that up in his mind that he needs to retire because I can’t say well you need to retire because you ain’t as good as you was. That’s why he took that time off because Floyd’s been boxing all of his life. All of his life he’s been boxing, so I can’t say you know what, after you beat Pacquiao retire. If I would have said that, that’s like telling Ray Leonard he has to quit after he found out he had a detached retina and he was laid off five and a half years. But what did he come back and do? (Jenna J—“He came back and he beat Hagler.”) Alright then, so for me to tell somebody what you can do, I mean I can say what you should do. I can say what you should do because he’s already accomplished more things than most fighters are going to ever accomplish, but I can’t say listen you need to quit. I can’t say you need to quite because that’s a choice amongst a fighter. A fighter, I mean, I can have an opinion but that doesn’t mean he’s going to do it. I mean, you walk away from the sport undefeated and if him and Shane Mosley would have fought for that other title, Floyd would have seven world championships today. But he accomplished all the things that he ever wanted to accomplish in boxing, so I mean—you get the money, you get the prestige, you’re recognized as one of the greatest fighters ever. Hey, what else can you do? You can’t get no bigger than that, but remember, fighters have egos and that’s why most times they end up staying around too long because it’s that ego and that money. You see, anytime you make the kind of money that they make on that level, it’s hard to walk away from.”

On money being the primary reason why some fighters come back when they’re past their best:
“Okay, so that’s why most fighters come back. That’s why they all come back. The greatest record in boxing was Ray Robinson. He was 127-1, but he came back. I don’t think fighters come back, fighters don’t come back so much over the money. Fighters come back over a love for what they do. I know, because I’m a fighter so I know even when I came back, it wasn’t so much about money. It was something that I wanted to accomplish. I just felt like I didn’t do all I could do. I just felt that way. You know what I’m saying? Even though you’re older you may be smarter, but I just didn’t think that I did all I could do so that’s why I came back. But then you got to understand, the oldest heavyweight champion in the world came back off a twenty year layoff, right? (Jenna J—“Yeah, George Foreman came back after a long layoff.”) And you see how much money he made, don’t you? Here’s a guy who was laid off eighteen years. That’s a long layoff to be away from a sport that you were good at. He came back and became the oldest heavyweight champion of the world. It’s all about what you believe. If he would have told me I’m going to come back at 47 years old, I would have said man you probably need to sit down. That’s what I would have told him, you see, but remember I don’t know him better than he knows himself. So obviously I would have been wrong. He made more money now coming back than he did when he was fighting in the 70s. I couldn’t make that call.”

On rumors floating around regarding a possible comeback from Mike Tyson and whether he think that is a good idea:
“Nope. Nope, see why I say that is because George Foreman is a—I mean fighters live different kinds of lifestyles, put it that way. Fighters live different kinds of lifestyles so when George Foreman came back, George Foreman was 300 and something pounds. He dropped that weight, dedicated himself, boom, he believed in the man up above, he went out there, and he made people believe what they didn’t think that he could do. It’s basically about your lifestyle and how you live. Mike Tyson, if he lived right and is clean like that he probably can come back. George Foreman proved it can be done. He proved it could be done. It ain’t like it can’t be done, George Foreman just proved it can be done at his age.”

On who he thinks is the best option for Floyd if the Pacquiao fight doesn’t happen:
“Well…oh shit, it’s hard to say. I mean, if I was him, I would fight Cotto. You know why? You know why I would fight Cotto? Only simply because one reason—Pacquiao whopped Cotto, right? (Jenna J—“Yeah.”) Cotto had a win over Shane Mosley. The fight was very close, but regardless of that, I would fight Cotto simply because then people would say, hey why don’t he fight the guy? Why don’t he fight Mayweather? To anybody else looking at boxing, that’s the only fight that makes sense anyway. That’s the only fight that makes sense—Pacquiao and Floyd. That’s the only fight that makes sense, and if the fight don’t happen it’s going to be simply because one reason—Pacquiao don’t want to fight. There’s a reason why he don’t want to fight. That’s it, and I already told you why that reason is. How is a guy going to turn $50 million? That don’t even make sense. Would you turn down $50 million? (Jenna J—“Nope.”) Alright. Well I got to be a fool to turn it down, too. So if the fight don’t happen that’s going to be the reason why it don’t happen, but it sure ain’t because Floyd don’t want the fight. I mean, why wouldn’t he fight him? That’s the only thing that makes sense. That’s all I’m saying.”

On what advice he would give young kid hoping to become a boxer:
“Well I train young kids. I don’t just train Floyd. People think, oh well, I just train Floyd. People think I just train Floyd, but I train the guy who’s the number one contender, too. The number one guy that just fought on Floyd’s card, Said Ouali, I train him, too. On Floyd’s undercard there was a kid named Said Ouali. Said’s from Belgium, that’s where he’s from. I train him, boom, and I train Jesse Vargas. I trained Jesse Vargas like when he was eight years old, so I’m used to training kids. That’s how I started myself, boxing and training. The main thing with a kid, the first thing I would tell him is number one, if you’re going to go into boxing you need to do some road work. That means you need to get yourself in shape before. Then after getting yourself in shape, get somebody to teach you the art of boxing. When I say teach you the art about boxing, when you teach the art about boxing it ain’t about just throwing a bunch of punches because that don’t mean nothing. It’s about offense and defense and learning how to move your head. That’s number one. When you get that, then everything else will come as you go. The more you stay in the gym, the more you can learn to adapt to it and it’s going to get easier for you. That’s what I would tell a child because I train kids. I train kids when they’re seven or eight years old, so that’s what I would tell them. Teach them the art. When I say teach them the art, I mean teach them their balance, how to stand, how to turn, how to move, how to catch like that because that’s all a part of boxing and that’s number one. That’s what I would say.”

On what he thinks of the Super Six super middleweight tournament:
“Well I’ve seen it. I trained one of the kids that was in it. I trained Andre Dirrell. I trained Dirrell, but the guy who I believe will win—who I think will win that I have seen is the kid from California. He’s the Olympic Gold Medalist.”

On whether he believes Andre Ward has the potential to be a future superstar in the sport on the level of his nephew:
“Well being a superstar it all depends on style, what people like about your style. What makes a superstar, it ain’t about so much—okay, take Marvin Hagler. Marvin Hagler wasn’t a superstar until he beat dudes like John Mugabi and Roberto Duran. He wasn’t a superstar. You got the welterweights that were bigger than him—Roberto Duran was bigger than him, Sugar Ray Leonard was bigger than him, Tommy Hearns was bigger than him. Until he fought those guys he became a superstar. Even with all the great fights that he had before then, they didn’t recognize him as a superstar but when he started fighting those guys he became a superstar. So when you start talking about being a superstar, you have to do something that obviously is going to catch people’s eyes and I think that’s basically what makes a superstar. You got to do something different that he brings to the game that somebody else don’t bring. I looked at the Super Six, when I seen Andre Ward was one of the better fighters in it. I’m not saying the other fighters weren’t good, I’m just saying Andre Ward was one of the better fighters in the Super Six tournament. Andre Dirrell is good, too, but I just say that I thought he was a better performer. Not because he won, it had nothing to do with him winning. It’s just that he had the guts and the balls to get in there and do what he needed to do from what I’ve seen. I had never seen him until the day he fought. I had heard about him, but I never knew nothing about him but when I looked at him, I said he’s a well schooled fighter.”

On who he thinks might be the next superstar in boxing:
“Well, I mean when I look today? What I see today is, Andre Ward could probably be a superstar. He’s a good fighter. I mean, he ain’t charismatic and that has a lot to do with boxing. You have to bring something to the table that somebody thinks you got, whether it be charm, whether it be a certain look, whether it be cockiness like that. You have to bring something to the table that’s different from everybody else and only a few guys have done that. Tyson did it, Ali did it, you got some other guys that did it, Ray Leonard did it. I mean you got some other guys who do it, but as for whether or not people want to watch you fight, you have to make them want to watch you fight. De La Hoya had it. So basically the next guy is going to have to have that kind of charisma in order for people to say he’s going to be the next boxing superstar.”


For those interested in listening to the Roger Mayweather interview in its entirety, it begins approximately fifty minutes into the show.


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Article posted on 06.07.2010

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