May 2, 2015 will forever be etched in the sports history books and the sport of Boxing.
That night, two of this generations greatest and most talked about boxers, Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquaio finally squared off in front of thousands at the MGM Arena, and millions watching around the world. The Mayweather vs Pacquaio fight is considered to be by many sports sites such as Torrent Freak.com “The most expensive and most watched fight ever.” They also mentioned that the fight was “destined to become the most pirated live sports event in history” The two legendary boxers didn’t disappoint and delivered a fight that will be talked about for many years to come. Today I will list the 5 Pros of the fight, and the 5 Cons. This list will be based on the subplots surrounding the fight, the fight itself, what the fight means for the dying future of pro boxing, and the things that were said after the fight. So let’s go.
1) The fight was underwhelming.
The fight itself was overhyped. Many felt this should have happened years ago, when Floyd and Manny were in their prime. If you were expecting a slug fest, epic moments, and Manny delivering the much deserved knockout to Floyd, I’m afraid you came to the wrong place. Instead the people were given ring prowess in this fight, with Floyd systematically taking his time and making Manny chase him around the ring. Boxing legend “Iron” Mike Tyson tweeted “We waited 5 years for that….” #underwhelmed #MayPac” ; If you have a boxing legend saying that the mega fight was disappointing, then there is a big problem.
2) Speculation of the fight possibly being fixed
Since the beginning of boxing, many felt that in some shape or form, that the sport was fixed, and when you have a boxer whose nickname and persona in and out the boxing ring is “Money” you have a lot of skepticism and questions to answer. Some believe that the fight was fixed. Rant Sports Jerry Landry provides an intriguing theory to the fight possibly being fixed. which you can find here: (http://www.rantsports.com/clubhouse/2015/05/04/scorecard-error-suggests-mayweather-pacquiao-fight-was-fixed/) His article has a few interesting facts involving the scorecard. Though this article is only a speculation and doesn’t really support the claims of fixing, the reason why these claims are alive is because of the finical logistics that were involved in the contract negotiations that will be explained in Con #3.
3) The Money
The financial details leading up to the negotiations of the fight via The New York Times stated the logistics of the financial side of the fight. Floyd would be getting 60% of the revenue, while Manny would get 40%. Also, the winner of the fight would get the 51/49 share of the revenue which meant more money for Floyd. Though Mayweather Promotions and Top Rank Promotions were working together to bring the fight to life, the contract that both promotions signed stated that Mayweather Promotions would get top billing and most of the credit for setting up the fight. Another finical aspect to the fight was the two premium broadcasting companies that showed the fight. HBO who has a contract with Manny Pacquaio, and Showtime who has a contract with Floyd Mayweather would work together to show the fight live on PPV. Though the fight was a joint partnership like Mayweather Promotions, Showtime got top billing over HBO. And the final flaw of the money aspect was that the cable companies suffered shut downs due to the overwhelming orders for the PPV. The fight itself was delayed 45 minutes due to companies like Dish, Direct TV, Verizon Fios, and AT&T having trouble streaming the event. And what makes this fight even worse in some fan’s opinions, is that the fight cost $100 to view. Many people were outraged by the price and local bars and restaurants that wanted to show the event couldn’t because they would have to pay close to $1,000 to view the fight and cover charges and drink revenue couldn’t make up for the price.
4) Floyd’s past with Domestic Violence
If you are a fan of Floyd Mayweather, you support him no matter what. But what most fans of “Money” Mayweather don’t want to admit or talk about, is his past with domestic violence. It is no secret, Floyd has been arrested on counts of domestic violence, battery and misdemeanors. Floyd has done community service, counseling on his impulse control, and even served a 90 day jail sentence. Many felt that the only reason why the Nevada Athletic Commission did not suspend Mayweather from competing, and that he was allowed to fight was because of the money which is again only speculation. Floyd’s public remarks to Ray Rice’s suspension didn’t help either. In an interview with CNN sports reporter Rachel Nichols, he spoke on the NFL’s handling of the Ray Rice controversy. He “believed that the NFL should have stuck with its original discipline of Ray Rice (2 game suspension) and that they were overly influenced by the video.” Though Floyd made a public apology to anybody that was offended by what he said, those who condemned him for saying such things and having a history with domestic violence had more reason to hate and not give their hard earned money to him. Popular sports reporters Rachel Nichols and Michele Beadle were reportedly banned from covering the fight because they asked the questions that no other reporter had the guts to ask and questioned him on his past with domestic violence. Though there are many reasons to support Floyd Mayweather, his past and the money aspect didn’t help his public image and that put a stain on the theatrics of the fight, and many people asked the fans of Floyd Mayweather, “Why do you support a man who has beaten on women?”
5) Manny Pacquiao’s excuses
Though nobody billed Floyd Mayweather as the villain or Manny Pacquiao as the hero, the fans, tabloids, and sports media made that decision for us. You have Floyd Mayweather who is the epitome of cockiness, has millions of dollars and is undefeated, versus Manny Pacquaio, who has a major following, is a hero to The Philippines, A government ambassador to his native homeland, and a overall likable guy. It’s what was said by both fighters that possibly switched the roles of hero and villain for both fighters. While Floyd commended Manny and applauded him for his valiant effort and boxing prowess, Manny pretty much said “I should have won this fight.” While Pac-Man fans wish that Manny would voice his opinion and say these things, they didn’t actually expect him to say it and when he did, it left a sour taste in everybody’s mouth. Manny who is well known to say the positives out of a rough situation sounded like a sore loser. He also mentioned after the fight that he was fighting with an injured right shoulder and that he was 60% in the fight. What makes this bad for Manny is that he says that he injured it in April during training and he didn’t let the Nevada Athletic Commission or the USADA (United States Anti-Doping Agency) know ahead of time. He said that he let them know during the public weigh-in on May 1st and that they denied him use for legal drugs which include cortisone shots to numb the pain.Though he did let the Nevada Athletic Commission and the USADA know, it makes us wonder why he didn’t let them know the second he got hurt instead of waiting and asking at such a critical time (Fight Week). With these excuses coming out of Manny’s mouth, it now taints the aspect and enjoyment of the fight and now we all have to ask the question “Was Manny really hurt?”
1) The fight itself
Though the fight didn’t meet everybody’s expectations, the fight was historic in many ways. The fact that two of boxing’s greatest legends met face to face in the ring was epic. Since the days of Mike Tyson, Evander Holyfield, Sugar Ray Leonard, and George Foreman, there hasn’t really been boxers that defined this generation. These two boxers fought Oscar De La Hoya who at the time (1999-2006) was the face of boxing and defeated him. Floyd and Manny are two household names, and they tore the roof down in ticket sales and PPV buys. The fight featured two ring generals who are masters of what they do, and no matter how boring the fight was, or what the decision was, this match was a must-watch for many boxing and sports fans.
2) Floyd’s dominance and 48-0 record
Many were expecting Manny to knock out Floyd and in call cases, that was the only way to win the match. But that did not happen as Floyd Mayweather showed complete and utter control of the match from the start. Manny did landsome good hits and a few flurry of punches, but Floyd’s plan was for Manny to tire himself chasing Floyd and throwing missed punches, and that plan worked to perfection for Mayweather. Manny unfortunately fell for Floyd’s trap and throughout the match, Mayweather was in control and when Rounds 8-12 began, Manny was already showing fatigue. Floyd extended his unprecedented record to 48 wins and 0 losses and unified the WBA, WBO, WBC, and The Ring Welterweight titles, and once again proved to the whole world, why he is The Best Ever (TBE).
3) Possible last mega-fight in Boxing
There has been plenty of boxing matches that define a generation or era. Ali vs Frazier, Ali vs Foreman, Tyson vs Holyfield, Tyson vs Lewis, and De La Hoya vs Chavez are examples of fights that defined a certain generation. With the long wait, negotiation disputes, and other factors, nobody really believed that Mayweather and Pacquaio would ever meet in the ring. But when Floyd Mayweather announced in February 2015, that he would indeed fight Manny Pacquiao, the whole world went nuts. All of the dream scenarios people had of them facing each other were becoming a reality. Every sports fan was hyped up for it, and when the media says the words “The Fight” people already know who they are referring to. The way Boxing is today, and Floyd Mayweather’s last match scheduled for September 2015, there may never be a mega fight in the dying sport of boxing that has all the glitz and glamour of Vegas, celebrities, hype, and media attention like this for a very long time.
4) What the fight means for the future of Boxing
Like I mentioned in Pro #3 this fight defined an era. Floyd and Manny were taking names and being superstars in the early 2000’s to today. With these prized fighters almost hitting the 40’s there is possibly no way they can continue their illustrious careers and be the same ever again. With many cable TV shows like TBS, NBC Sports, and ESPN bringing back Boxing, this fight represented an end of an era for boxing fans. An era that was mostly dominated by the presence of an undefeated champion and a man of the people. Floyd publicly mentioned that he will fight one more time in September, then he will retire, and Manny’s career is up in question due to the critical loss he got from Floyd, and his shoulder injury, so this fight is the end of an era and the dawn of a new beginning for Boxing’s newest and youngest stars.
5) Floyd relinquishing his titles
After the fight, Floyd Mayweather said in his press confrence many good things about Pacquaio, when his last match will be, and possibly the greatest shocker – relinquishing all five of his welterweight titles. “I’ll talk to my team and see what we need to do. Other fighters need a chance. Give other fighters a chance. I’m not greedy.” said Floyd. he also mentions that “I’m a world champion in two different weight classes. It’s time to let other fighters fight for the belt.” For Mayweather to vacate his five championships is a blessing for the welterweight division and boxing in general. I feel that Floyd did this to bring in a new era of fighters who are going to compete for the very titles he has held to his whole career. Now he isn’t fighting for championships, he’s fighting for himself, and to extend his record to 49-0 which would be tying Boxing Legend and former Heavyweight champion Rocky Marciano who owns the record for most wins in boxing history.
Fight grade: 7.5/10
Overall, I thought that the match was amazing. Minus all the negative media attention, and politics of the Nevada Athletic Commission and Boxing, I felt that this was one of those sports moments you will emember for a long timer. Boxing is a controversial and dying sport, and the only reason it has thrived these past 10 years was because of Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao. Though they haven’t said it, I feel that this match was a symbolic farewell to a fun and exciting era of Boxing. As Floyd vacates his titles and his final match looms in 4 months, and as Manny’s career is up in the air, we say goodbye to this era of boxing and though it will take some years to get used to, we welcome a new era; With young bucks like Saul Alvarez, Amir Khan, and Willie Monroe Jr. on the rise, Boxing will become a new age for a new generation.