Big fight tomorrow night at the MGM Grand, Las Vegas, NV. The rematch is billed as “Mayhem” or Mayweather vs Maidana II. Until recently Mayweather, Jr., thought he had fans right where he wanted them, and that’s in paying seats. In the recent past, it bothered him not one iota whether fans were paying to see him win or lose, just as long as they’re paying!
On the surface, it is no great slight to him if a number of fans object to his bragging. Few disapproved because of any character flaw. Rather, these boxing fans feel Money manages his career too carefully, which is a polite way of saying he avoids certain worthy opponents because they might be a threat to his “O” in the loss column. That group also argues his style is too defensive. They want a red blooded macho champion. They want to see Money get clobbered, and they’re willing to pay to see it. Money, of course, likes the pay part. Whether they’re paying to see him win or to get trounced makes no difference to the bottom line, and that’s the only line drawn in the sand Money cares about.
Up until now, he’s enjoyed being the highest paid athlete in the world. That enviable position has allowed him to steer things his way. As he puts it, he does what he wants, when he wants and how he wants. He and Mayweather CEO Leonard Ellerbe have, on more than one occasion, managed to set up the opposition. They are good at pulling the rug out from under certain fighters and and promoters. Floyd is in the catbird seat. On fight night for the first meeting with Marcos Maidana, he stirred up a last minute mess over Maidana’s gloves. Floyd got what he wanted. Maidana and his trainer Robert Garcia were forced to use different gloves, even though the ones they intended to wear had been approved by the Nevada State Athletic Commission.
Now their advantageous position seems threatened because of remarks Floyd concerning the Ray Rice situation.
Los Angeles Times columnist Bill Dwire’s headline describes it this way: ” …..Mayweather, Jr. just can’t say the right thing on the Ray Rice incident.”
After saying the wrong thing, Floyd and Ellerbe squirmed in their seats. They sensed and feared the media’s line of questioning. They knew there was no way Floyd could take back his remarks. He tried by back-tracking with, “If I’ve offended anybody, then I apologize.”
Ellerbe then stepped in and said, “We do not condone this kind of behavior. No more questions.”
What led up to all of this was Floyd’s damning utterance concerning the elevator video. It seems in Floyd’s mind the video is the reason for the severe punishment levied on Rice by the NFL. Floyd implies without the video, there’s no case. To make matters worse, he added, “There are worse things happening in households that go unpunished because there’s no video”. His comments coupled with his past jail time for assault of his girl friend Josie Harris, and the pending civil suit against him by former finance Shantel Jackson for assault and battery and defamation could very well sabotage Floyd’s high hopes for big PPV numbers. He has caused the negative feeling or “Nay” to go deeper than a simple dislike of a braggadocio or boring style. Now, this group of fans is experiencing a different kind of dislike. Mayweather has managed to push already negative emotions into more of a repugnance or loathing. It’s not likely this group of boxing fans will be ante up any dinero for Money this saturday night!