Two-time welterweight world champion Andre Berto (30-3, 23 KOs) participated in a media workout at the J.W. Marriott at L.A. Live as he prepares for the biggest fight of his career. In front of an enthusiastic crowd, Berto looked focused and in great shape, jumping rope and shadowboxing, as he looks to become the first fighter to defeat 12-time world champion Floyd “Money” Mayweather (48-0, 26 KOs), on Saturday, Sept. 12 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas live on SHOWTIME PPV® (8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT). In addition to Berto, top 168-pound contender George Groves and former three-time world champion Jhonny Gonzalez participated in the media workout as they prepare for their respective fights on the SHOWTIME PPV broadcast.
The training session was hosted by TV & CBS Radio personality Big Tigger and Emmy® Award-winning sports reporter Mark Kriegel and streamed in high definition across multiple platforms, including via satellite feed, YouTube and social media.
Promoted by Mayweather Promotions, the Sept. 12 four-fight pay-per-view telecast will be produced and distributed live by SHOWTIME PPV and is the sixth and final fight of a record-breaking deal between Mayweather and Showtime Networks Inc. SHOWTIME Sports® will support the event with the Sports Emmy® Award-winning series ALL ACCESS.
In world championship fights on the pay-per-view telecast, Roman “Rocky” Martinez (29-2-2, 17 KOs) will defend his WBO Junior Lightweight title in a rematch against four-time world champion Orlando “Siri” Salido (42-13-2, 29 KOs), and Badou Jack “The Ripper” (19-1-1, 12 KOs) will make the initial defense of his WBC Super Middleweight World title against mandatory challenger “Saint” George Groves (21-2, 16 KOs). The opening fight of the telecast will feature former three-time world champion and Mexican power-puncher Jhonny Gonzalez (58-9, 49 KOs) against Puerto Rico’s Jonathan “Polvo” Oquendo (25-4, 16 KOs) in a 10-round junior lightweight scrap.
Plus, former 154-pound world champion Ishe Smith (27-7, 12 KOs) will be opposed by longtime top-five contender Vanes Martirosyan (35-2-1, 21 KOs) in the 90-minute COUNTDOWN LIVE: MAYWEATHER vs. BERTO” preshow on Saturday, September 12.
Tickets for the live event, which is promoted by Mayweather Promotions LLC., are priced at $1,500, $1,000, $750, $500, $300 and $150 and are on sale now. Tickets are limited to eight (8) per household for all ticket prices except the $150 ticket category, which is limited to four (4) per household. To charge by phone or with a major credit card, call Ticketmaster at (800) 745-3000. Tickets also are available for purchase at www.mgmgrand.com or www.ticketmaster.com.
What Berto, Berto’s trainer, Virgil Hunter, George Groves, Jhonny Gonzalez and Mayweather Promotions CEO Leonard Ellerbe said Friday:
“From an energy aspect I feel great. It’s my first time in a while coming into a fight with no injuries. This is the healthiest I’ve been since I can remember.
“At the end of the day, this fight was supposed to happen two or three times. Situations with me not taking care of myself and not taking opponents seriously caused it to happen. But styles make fights and we’ll see what the boxing fans say Sept. 12.
“I know that I’m still the same guy who people thought could have given Floyd problems a couple years ago.
“Victor Ortiz and Robert Guerrero both got fights with Floyd because they beat me. There must be something to that. They said ‘if he did something to Berto, he should get a shot at Floyd.'”
“We’re here. It’s my time to see him. He can have his ‘MayVinci’ code because we put in the work. The whole team is confident. I’m going to do what I do.
“We worked on a lot of different things at camp. I have the speed to keep up with him. I have more power.
“The thing with Floyd is, most guys he fights aren’t as athletic as he is. But I am.
“If you come at Floyd fast but don’t have a plan and don’t have good footwork, it’s too easy for him. If you have a guy that’s as athletic as him, it gives him problems.
“There is a lot more to me than just walking guys down. I have speed, I have power, I have a crazy uppercut, I can move to the side. There are a lot of ways I can get it done.
“I’m not going to watch his sparring. I don’t want to watch him driving his cars, none of that. I want to see him Sept. 12.
“This is my first time going into a fight without all the pressure on my back. I’ve always been the favorite in every fight. I don’t know what he’s feeling and I don’t really have to care about it.
“It’s a different mindset. Coming from where I come from, we always had to defeat the odds. We didn’t have what other people had. We had to work twice as hard for everything. To be noticed to be seen. Even back then it drove me to be the best that I can be. I wanted everyone to know I was somebody you had to watch.
“I’ve faced these odds my whole life. I was discounted two years ago when I was laying in the hospital. I’m constantly envisioning victory.
“All the hard work we’re putting in, it’ll all pay off fight night. It’s not just for me. I’ve been through doing things for me. I see what’s real now.
“I’ve prepared myself mentally to be in this position. People can say whatever they want. We’re focused.
“This is going to be for everyone who believes in the underdog.”
“We have a unique opportunity right in front of us. We have a chance at history and to cement a legacy for my fighter (Berto).
“What is the key to winning this fight? (Berto) has got to want to win. He has to want it more. He holds the keys in his hand. You can plan as much as you want for tomorrow, but we don’t know what tomorrow will bring. We can only prepare.
“If (Berto) wins this fight, you’ll see me jumping up and down and it will be hard to compose myself. I’m usually pretty composed, but you might see me jump up and fall out of the ring and hit my head or something.
“No matter what happens, Floyd will always be considered one of the best ever. Win or lose, his legacy is cemented.
“There are similarities between Floyd and Andre Ward. They both started boxing as young boys, and were Olympians and are undefeated. There’s a lot of pressure that comes with being undefeated and they both have faced that.
“It’s not fair to the fight game to say this is a free shot and to go in there and say we have nothing to lose. We have everything to lose.”
“I think Floyd shocked everyone by sparring on his media day on Wednesday. It wasn’t planned. You just never know what you’re going to get at any Mayweather event. He’s always going to do something to attract attention and put on a show.
“There’s no fear in Virgil (Berto’s trainer) or Andre checking it out and finding something that they can use against Floyd. Virgil is an excellent trainer and they will be prepared for everything for this fight.
“Everything is right on track with the promotion. Doing a media workout like this is very important to keep the publicity up and to market the event and let the fighters interact with the fans. We have a tremendous undercard on Sept. 12
“The SHOWTIME All Access episodes have been excellent and are getting the fans and media excited for this fight.”
# # #
“HIGH STAKES: Mayweather vs. Berto,” a 12-round welterweight world championship bout for Mayweather’s WBC and WBA 147-pound titles, is promoted by Mayweather Promotions LLC. The event will take place Saturday, September 12 at MGM Grand in Las Vegas and will be televised by SHOWTIME PPV. The undercard features a WBO Junior Lightweight World Championship fight, which is a rematch between Roman Martinez and Orlando Salido. Also featured on the PPV telecast will be a WBC Super Middleweight title bout between Badou Jack and George Groves, which is promoted in association with Team Sauerland. The opening PPV bout pits former world champion Jhonny Gonzalez against Puerto Rico’s Jonathan Oquendo in a 10-round super featherweight bout.
“ALL ACCESS: Mayweather vs. Berto” Episode 1 premieres this Friday, Aug. 28 at 10:30 p.m. ET/PT.