OK, Manny vs Floyd, Vegas, MGM Floyd, May 2nd, Cinco de Mayo weekend @ MGM Floyd…most
$$$$$ evah…all time great legacies on the line…blah, blah blah and such, the endless steaming, streaming consciousnesses of “boxing experts” blushing forth orgasmic prematurity. We get it. We the poor, the huddled, the bedeviled, the unwashed rubes are supposed to be impressed.
Impressive: The projection for just the live gate is $74 million, more thrice the gate record of $20 million set by Mayweather in his 2013 “event” against Canelo Alvarez. Projected $200-400 million net PPV projections aside, from a historical fighter’s perspective, this megamillions boxing lottery has all the impotent impetus of the “For The Money Only” rubber match between Sugar Ray Leonard and Roberto Duran when both were in their late 30s. Leonard ran like a chicken thief in the chilly Vegas night against an ancient fighter with over 90 fights on his odometer, about as classic as most of your modern day garden variety American runners and squawkers gloved in pillows tiptoeing and blowing kisses at each other today in empty arenas. Whats left of today’s few American boxing fans love their humongous big events with showy ring entrances, all while ogling oodles of rich celebs and screaming announcers preening and strutting their stuff. The main bout typically produces opiate inducing sleep properties late at night needed for drunken, besotted insomniacs who populate the fan base. Unless, of course, blatant Referee interference or Judges’ scoring bias insults the public, resulting in uproarious bowels befouling and clogging up the antisocial media boxing sites as feeble attention spans fizzle out to reload for the next outrage of boxing.
Not so impressive: Floyd is near that same gunshy, semi-retired Leonard level and style now propped up by the powers that be, but the hope is for those hardcores who pain over the dismal future of boxing that Manny’s still relative high level relevance will be able to close those retreating, clinching, running gaps to corner Floyd to make a fight of the century out of it. If it takes two to tango, then it follows that it takes two to tangle, and to put it simply, Floyd ain’t built for the big tangle. He did supposedly shake loose with a credible tango in his foray into Dancing With the Stars and was willing to be jangled by Big Show in his Pro Wrestling Foray, but he ran from Manny for 5 years. That’s Cinco Cinco de Mayos ago until finally forced by his Showtime masters and sugar daddy Haymon to make this fight so they could make their money back on his stupendous contract before his wheels fall off.
Forgive me my lifetime of hard earned cynicism: I first saw Floyd on the main card against Jesus Chavez with Manny on the supporting card against Agapito Sanchez. I tuned in to specifically watch Floyd as he was being heavily touted by various internet aficianados. Floyd struggled immensely against the tiny, but game Chavez who was quick on his feet, a very dynamic pressure fighter. The HBO crew had Chavez winning, but finally Floyd got untracked with a very sharp combination just before the end of round 9. Chavez’s mercenary for hire trainer, Ronnie Shields, brought in to give Chavez credible leverage against referee bias, immediately stopped the bout during the rest time in spite of ballistic protests of the bogus stoppage by Chavez’s real trainer, Richard Lord. I’d never heard of Manny who was also fighting a smaller tough guy, Agapito Sanchez, not so skilled as Chavez, but rather very much nastier with 90% of his offense consisting of low blows and headbutts anytime Manny jumped in for a flurry. I thought it quite stupid that Manny couldn’t figure out to just box and move at a distance and take the easy decision. Instead, even after Sanchez was deducted a measly 2 points when he should have been disqualified, the ring doc stopped the bout in the 6th round based on a horrendous cut exacerbated by the final headbutt on Manny to send the bout to the cards. The Three Blind Mice then rendered a bogus draw, so I could see boxing was back in business on this card in all it’s shamelessness. All my statements and conclusions that follow are based upon extensive study of the histories of their careers both before and after that night above when neither looked like more than a decent fighter at best.
Included are well deserved relevant observations about referees and judges that are less than complimentary.
Plain P4P facts: Manny Pacquiao is the best P4P fighter in the history of boxing as measured by available data, win, lose, or draw in this “event.” No matter if all the Al Haymon/Golden Boy News of the Ring World ‘arses and all the Ring’s metromen lack the Ring IQ to understand by Ring’s own historical ratings enough to put anything truthful together again, P4P, Manny looms over the rest of his era. That would be Wladimir Klitschko and then Floyd Mayweather specifically.
Manny’s official record against Ring rated P4Pers is 8-3-1, 5 KO, a record that could easily have been 10-2, 7 KO but for bungling refs and judges in the first two JMMarquez fights and the first Tim Bradley fight. Manny’s hit list including Erik Morales x3, Marco Antonio Barrera x2, Juan Manuel Marquez x4, Ricky Hatton x 1 and Timothy Bradley x2. That’s 12 P4P fights as opposed to Floyd Mayweather’s 6 total Ring rated P4P fights, the last two P4Pers being installed just weeks before Floyd fought them in a blatantly dishonest yet futile Ring attempt to close that gap between he and Manny.
Comprehensive P4P breakdown here after their first two proposed fights collapsed:
A review of current Ring P4P ratings: Whoops, this just further exposes just how weak Floyd’s resume is in comparison. Manny has fought Ring P4Pers JMMarquez and Timothy Bradley x 6 for an “official” career record of 3-2-1 that should be more properly 5-1. Floyd has fought only a poorly prepped Marquez that one time 6 years ago when he made Marquez jump up two divisions at that Floyd didn’t even bother to make the contract weight of 144lbs. Manny fought a prime Marquez at Marquez’s two best weights and then twice faced the Balco trained Marquez, a much bigger, stronger, and better prepared version than the pisswater sipping, rock throwing version Mayweather faced. Moreover, Manny has been a Ring ranked P4Per already in his 12th consecutive year, almost 600 weeks by the time of this fight. Wlad Klitschko, ranked over him at #2, is in his 5th year and Ring #1 Floyd is in his 4th year, combined not even coming close to equaling Manny. Both Bradley and Marquez have also been currently P4P ranked longer than Floyd and also have more current P4P fights than him, so it’s not just Manny looming P4P over him, it’s become a collection of Floyd’s peers who have been fighting legit P4P fights to much less acclaim, but, yupsir, it’s Floyd with the supreme Al Haymon/GoldenBoy News of the Ring World media ranking and the biggest, most profane money.
Folks, I don’t make this stuff up, but enough of the easy pickings of Ring’s rotten, low hanging fruit, it’s too easy to digress tapping into all of boxing’s servile idiocy. What about the actual fight comparisons?
It’s all Manny again: He is clearly the fighter and the slugger in this shotgun arranged wedding as Floyd wears his veils of extra wraps, extra glove padding, and extra large doses of cortisone to protect the fragile china in his hands. It should go without saying that when the unknown, scrawny 19 year old Filipino waif was fed to the highly regarded prime aged Thai champ, Chatchai Sasakul, in Thailand in his own backyard, the kid not only dethroned the champ in a big highly partisan outdoor stadium type fight Asians are noted for, but utterly brutalized him before knocking him cold out. That single act is much greater than any single act Floyd has ever accomplished while being carefully preened, promoted, and protected by the two biggest promoters in the world, Bob Arum’s Top Rank and later Oscar de la Hoya’s Golden Boy the entirety of his career. This is his 11th straight fight at the MGM Floyd and 14th of his career, about 30% of his career…. More telling, the last 9 years going into this fight he has been fighting in the MGM Floyd, almost half his career by the timeline.
Whereas Manny is used to fighting away from home and getting the royal screw at the MGM Floyd starting with the first Marquez fight. Manny knocked Marquez down 3x in the first round, breaking his nose only to secure a draw. Most refs would have stopped the bout after the 3rd KD, but worse, one of the judges later admitted to a mistake in shortchanging Manny by a point in that first round that would have secured him the split decision. Several MGM egregious errors and outrages against Manny later, here he is willing to fight Floyd within the strict straight jacket officiating confines of Floyd’s self styled boudoir. It was always probable the judges and ref chosen will be the usual suspects carefully selected over these many years to consistently favor Floyd, so yes Virginia, there is a Santa Claus on Mexican Holidays at MGM Floyd if your name is Floyd Mayweather. The Floyd Platinum Protection Plutonium Plus Program has been rolled out in full force for this fight with the appointment of his buddy Kenny Bayless as ref with Burt Clements and Dave Moretti of Nevada along with Glenn Feldman of Connecticut as judges. Manny will surely be wearing Bayless as a ball and chain in the ring and the judges as a wet blanket all night.
OK, surely Floyd has some legit natural attributes over Manny, right?
Of course, not the least being that his 72″ reach is significantly greater than the stubby 67″ reach of Manny and he’s likely to be a few pounds heavier on fight night. He’s also the dirtiest fighter and the best grappler with the better overall defense. It must be noted though that he seldom faced any of the acclaimed sluggers in his era, overall his chin has been topnotch, meaning Manny has his work cut out to be able to knock him out, the only probable way Manny can win the fight if Manny can manage to stay clear of the clutches of Bayless for a few seconds here and there to pick his spots.
Where Floyd really reigns supreme is his sheer audacity as the most numismatic fighter in history, indulging his every whim in his own boudoir that he has made the MGM Floyd. That “his team” could entice Forbes magazine to lie about his being the highest paid athlete by using 2 years of earnings instead of one the year before he actually did become the highest paid athlete speaks volumes about the American muscle and money backing his career, perhaps also revealing the fatal crack in his supposed ring invincibility. He has been the most insecure supposed great to ever done gloves, always needing a sugar daddy massaging his ego and a literal ton of security beefsters/gofsters/ guarding his spare public appearances.
What’s he afraid of, assassination?
The unspoken X rated factor favoring Floyd: Manny’s previously stated political stance against gay marriage in a liberal state headed by the US senate majority/minority leader Harry Reid. What with Mayweather Sr publicly “outing” Mayweather Promotions prez, Leonard Ellerbee, as being the biggest &*#*& in Vegas combined with Mayweather’s avowed mancrush on Justin Bieber, we can more additionally presume the politically appointed judging won’t be going Manny’s way much like the first Bradley fight where his press planted comments first surfaced days before the fight. Manny stepped on a land mine in that one, but the next fight it was his team that betrayed him during the hellacious 4th fight with Marquez. Unbelievably they allowed former presidential nominee Mitt Romney in the dressing for a conference minutes before the fight. “Hi, I’m Mitt Romney and I just lost the presidential election” was the way of his introduction, a horrid way to mentally prep for what was known in advance to be a very tough fight against the BALCO trained Marquez, a disastrous team mistake.
And speaking of BALCO: In the truth being stranger than fiction world of Floyd and boxing, after all his self-promoted publicity of wanting to clean up boxing with Olympic style drug testing, his own fighters failed conventional drug tests and he’s refused commentary on 3 of his own alleged tests that can be said to have been covered up by GoldenBoy and the USDA since they refuse to address the issue. Now Floyd is on record as refusing a $5 million penalty for failing a drug test for this fight. Of course the private drug testing terms were already agreed to by contract, so this can be seen as the first shot across the Floyd bow by Manny who previously won his lawsuit settlement from Floyd for slandering him, making Manny 1-0 against Floyd in advance of this fight:
Four fights ago: Manny was knocked out in a knockdown, dragout fight for the decade against freshly BALCO trained JMMarquez, but since has recovered with three domineering wins over slugger Brandon Rios, P4P boxer Timothy Bradley, and undefeated Chris Algieri, all significantly bigger, stronger, with awkward styles, and all in their prime years. Compare four fights ago when post prison Floyd promised a toe to toe battle against Robert Guerrero, but backed out of that promise after Guerrero’s father publically accused Floyd of being serial women beater. Floyd instead ran for 10 of the 12 tap-tap rounds to claim another noneventful hometown decision. Then the anticipated fight of undefeateds against Canelo Alvarez where Floyd finished a nothing opening round with what is now his best punch, a leaping upperbutt to no warning by his buddy Kenny Bayless. A few rounds later a frustrated Canelo was warned severely by Bayless for being choked and laced by Floyd before responding with a light, “What are you doing” tap on the thigh. Thereafter the thoroughly frustrated Canelo was “guided” into exchanging long distance taps for taps that Floyd could only win two judges over with a majority decision. He replicated those types of scores against Marcos Maidana who pretty much beatup Floyd as he wished. That lead to a rematch where Maidana scored a delayed but uncalled hard knockdown in the first round when Floyd rebounded off the ropes and collapsed at his feet, unable to even weakly grab Maidana on the way down. In the 5th round only a second before the end of round bell, Maidana landed another concussive right that spun Mayweather a full 180 degrees into his corner as the bell sounded. Later on it was a sad moment for future boxing historians when Floyd quit in the middle of round 8 to go cry in his corner to his daddy. Floyd was using his signature move of trying to choke Maidana in a headlock while lacing his face for cuts and stuffing his glove up his mouth. Crying served it’s purpose though, buying Floyd plenty of time and the sympathies of a clearly muddled Kenny Bayless who couldn’t quite understand the intergalactic magnitude of The Best Evah Floyd’s little pinky being so viciously nipped with a soft rubber gum shield through the extra padding in his gloves. He eventually had to do something to get the fight going again, so he warned Maidana with disqualification, no kidding.
Never been a fan of ring interviewers always grilling confused, concussed fighters in the immediate aftermath of such a tough fight, but reading the tea leaves in the fighter comments points to a disturbing trend for Floyd. He’s been getting clocked hard and often, and the judges have been marking him down a few grades, but here he is his own words:
Floyd Mayweather: ” …I felt dry and dead…I’d give myself a C-…I got hit with some shots tonight I should’t have got hit with…”
Marcos Maidana: “… if judges like to give the fight to fighters that run I guess they gave it to him…“He kept holding and pushing, but the ref wouldn’t do anything about it. Instead he took points away from me…”
Punch Monkey Adjustment: If Compuhoax and the rest of the punch monkey world had a shred of honesty, they’d multiply Maidana’s punch totals by a factor of FIVE which is about how much harder Maidana hits in comparison with the tap-tap pitty-patty popcorn Floyd gets credited with. They’d also tabulate feints, throw away punches, and concussive punches, but that would destroy the myth of their marketing tool used support various vacuous “boxing experts” in desperate need to fill in some fluffy nonsense in their dim noggins.
Common Opponents: Manny pretty well shuts out Floyd here. Fought prime JMMarquez, busting up him so badly that Marquez turned down a record rematch payday to go get trounced in Indonesia for literally peanuts. Nobody runs from record paydays against Floyd as Marquez proved when he jumped two divisions and accepted a $3 million purse plus a bonus $600K that Floyd paid as a penalty for being 2 lbs over the 144 contract weight. Manny knocked out a prime version of Miguel Cotto who years later turned down their rematch with and a record purse for considerably less against Floyd because Cotto thought he could beat Floyd even with the short notice for training. Floyd did fight a rusty version Shane Mosley first, but was lucky to survive the first two rounds with an assist from Kenny Bayless who kept Mosley from roughing up Floyd on the ropes in the rounds that followed. Manny completely dominated a better prepped albeit year older Mosley, effectively making him quit trying after knocking him down early, many more knockdowns over these common opponents than Floyd has. Manny also beat the unholy dingdongs out of Oscar de la Hoya and Ricky Hatton, making Oscar quit, and coldcocking Ricky out in a brutal slaughter, both relatively easy fights for Manny. Floyd may have fought them first, but, he struggled and then suddenly retired as both were in heavy training preparing for their rematches with him. Manny took up their cause, even moving down to Hatton’s best weight to retire both Oscar and Ricky permanently. Beat’em so bad they fell prey to drug and other substance abuse and needed much rehabilitation to reclaim their lives.
Fact, nobody “runs” from a fight with Floyd: The irony has been lost in this new short attention span generation that he’s become the ultimate poster boy for the typical opponent running from Manny. Eric Morales was the only fighter ever wanting to fight Manny immediately after their first fight which brings us to the legacy factor after that great trilogy. Manny has some great all time series against Erik Morales, Marco Antonio Barrera, JMMarquez, Tim Bradley, all top P4Pers of their era. Floyd has no great series of fights period though he has had a few somewhat great fights, but his cautious, hometown, defensive style and matchmaking lacks the flash and power that most every truly great fighter had.
Nonetheless, periodically there are inexplicable twists in the time continuum and this could be one. The last man to beat Floyd did so in the Olympics of 1996, Serafim Todorov of Bulgaria, yesssss, that Serfim Todorov!
The Styles: As to how the likely scenario of the way this past it’s sell date “event” will be fought, we might as well have some fun with an analogous situation from way back, 1835, when Bendigo, the preeminent defensive specialist of his day met Ben Caunt for a spurious trilogy thanks to the negative, spoiling fighting style of Bendigo anytime he faced a physically superior foe. Bendigo was also the epitome of Floyd’s long rapsheet, typically being in and out of jail for “disturbing the peace.” The inexperienced but bigger and stronger Caunt was only 20 years of age the first go round and found himself thoroughly ticked off by Bendigo running around the ring before flopping down with every Caunt swing. These were London Prize Ring Rules fights to the finish with knockdowns only meaning the round was over. Caunt finally stormed to the Bendigo corner at the end of the 21st round.
“Wilt thou stand up and fight fair thou damned hound?”
Caunt then delivered a single sweeping backhand that knocked Bendigo and his trainer to the turf, thereby earning an immediate disqualification. The rematch was even worse, some 75 tedious, tortuous rounds with Bendigo defensively “flopping” most all of those rounds before finally being ruled as to have flopped without taking a blow. That finally earned Bendigo the disqualification which led to Caunt subsequently being jumped in the ring riot to be roughed up by the maniacal supporters of Bendigo upset over the verdict. And by Jove, it only got worse for the rubber, some 93, count em, 93 ever more tortuous rounds, amplified by Bendigo supporters storming into the edges of the ring while fighting with spectators, thereby sending the referee fleeing for his life. Floyd had a fight like that when his Uncle Roger stormed the ring to go after Zab Judah and Richard Steele, leading to a ring riot that took 10 minutes to quell, normally a disqualification under modern rules that preclude a corner for even having a foot on the ring apron. After heavy persuasion, the ref returned to even more fighting and threats during which Caunt landed a legal knockdown blow before walking to his corner to sit down as per the rules of the day. Bendigo jumped up to follow yelling along with his anarchic supporters that Caunt went down without taking a blow, Caunt was thus stuck with a disqualification by the faint ref only wishing to wash his hands of this misbegotten bout ASAP to save his hide. Bell’s Life, a much more independent boxing magazine of the day than the current Ring Mag mouthpiece for Golden Boy and Al Haymon, lamented, “a disgraceful and disgusting exhibition…a blow has been given to the boxing school from which it can never recover. Boxing Illustrated started with, “For years the practice of pugilism has been revolting to mankind,” and on and so forth…
The Venue: Perhaps such an olde English bare knuckled match stretches modern comparisons for some, so let us return several years later, 1858, for the American bout that first established boxing on those shores that ultimately led to a century of American domination of boxing. The New York Tribune scathingly noted the derelict nature of the gamblers, crooks, murderers and sports, “the most vicious congregation of roughs that was ever witnessed in a Christian city,” noting by the conclusion of the bout, “…so much rowdyism, villainy, scoundrelism, and boiled down viciousness concentrated on so small a space.”
And no, they weren’t referring to Austin, Texas or Washington, DC, the most prominent American capitols of cretaceous era cretin legislatures bulldozing the locals whilst filling their pockets with always handy lobbyist cash and perks, nor were they referring to Las Vegas which had yet to be founded, but what goes around ultimately comes around in boxing. American “hero” John Camel Heenan took on John “Old Smoke” Morrissey whose best offensive weapon had been the persuasion of the drawn guns of his supporters. The bout had to be held on a barren island on the Canadian side of Lake Ontario to evade American law enforcement, so Buffalo, New York was the steamship departure point. Heenan had been confined to bed the week before the fight, deathly ill because of an infected leg, all well known in advance. He went for the KO early to beat the stink off Ol’ Smoke who was in his prime at 27 years of age. And Heenan almost got the knockout before soon running out of steam, launching a big swing that screwed him face down in the turf for for good much like the asthma challenged Shannon Briggs against Lennox Lewis. Like I mentioned, what goes around in this world usually comes around again as world and boxing history has shown us.’
On the ultimate historical side note, it’s an old story, the most ancient, but worth a retelling again.
This is the “approximate” 5000th year anniversary of the first ever recorded fight of rivals, The Epic of Gilgamesh, Sumerian King of Uruk, first chiseled in clay tablets circa 3000 BC, but the story theme is doubtless much older, passed along by oral storytelling emanating from the mists of time at the dawn of human development. Gilgamesh was 2/3rds God and 1/3rd man when he spontaneously erupted into combat with Enkidu, the great natural beast-man of the Steppes who ran with the antelopes and drank at the springs with lions. Enkidu had been seduced by the prostitute sent out by Gilgamesh in the first recorded sexual ensnarement of a man by a woman. Enkidu had been scaring the holy bejabbers out of the local “ranchers” as it were before being tamed, and then inexplicably led into the city for the showdown.
They leapt at each other’s throats like wolves, bellowing like bulls, gasping for breath like horses having run all day as they crashed into the great gate of the Marriage House, crushing it. Great billows of dust bellowed up as the people shrieked and children cried. Dogs tore in between their legs as they engaged in the dance of life that hovers near death. The battle was in a freestyle form with no hometown referees to spoil the action, no deliberate fouls committed, no gamblers…errr…perhaps a few spontaneous wagers made we would have to assume knowing what we do about general populations. No weapons were used, just an innate code of honor. Innocent bystanders served as the judges as the two finally fell against each other in utter exhaustion and profound respect, so a noncontroversial draw was the first recorded fight result and the rest is history.
Dominating personal intangibles: Manny emerging from his teeming, cockfighting, disposable impoverished Filipino kid culture to become the most internationally known fighter on the planet based on his compelling raw fighting talent is the irresistible intangible he brings to the ring. Floyd endowed with his stubborn Mayweather family pride, training all year round for fights he knows well in advance as his American heritage is the immovable intangible that sustains him in time of need.
Curse of the Haymon/GoldenBoy News of the Ring World Experts: Floyd is the slight betting favorite but most of the money in advance is on Manny, a fight seen as “even” overall. Yet Ring “experts” are picking Floyd by a margin of 42-6-2. Well, now, guess they looked around and saw the same location venue, refs, judges, ect as the previous 11 straight Floyd decisions the past 9 years, so maybe boxing experts ain’t as dumb as they look to outsiders. Still, the grazing herd mentality of the fighting boxing press stands out in sharp contrast to what boxing under fairly regulated rules is supposed to represent, and speaking of…
What the non boxing cognoscenti are saying about boxing…Greed Rules, not Marquis of Queensbury Rules:
How can Floyd ever cope with eternal life? In the Great Pantheon of Boxing Valhalla where all the greats go, mo’ money has no value. Greats lust to fight the best every day, and since some days are better than others, taking a loss is of no consequence other than the temporary loss of bragging rights. It’s not easy living like a boxing god if you can only claim to be a greedy mortal.
We could go on forever about natural attributes and styles to no avail: We can hope for the epic great fight, but unfortunately this is as much about the ref and the judges not to mention the immediate aftermath of a bleak future for boxing. Will the 3rd world Filipino wonder get the justice he deserves in the corrupt Vegas setting? He did score big in the largest alltime great poll poll staged by some scribes in Las Vegas that drew in millions of international votes. Manny was chosen #2 all time between #1 Sugar Ray Robinson and #3 Muhammad Ali and the #1 featherweight all time as I recall. Floyd could only secure #3 lightweight alltime, so I guess in advance Manny moves to 2-0 against Floyd not to mention Freddie Roach is currently 1-0 against fellow trainer Senior who took the knockout hit on Ricky Hatton against Roach and Manny, so let’s make that 3-0 for Manny.
Manny and Freddie Roach always wanted the fight, but it was Senior that put it in Junior’s noggin that Manny was too dangerous to fight. Fast forward cinco Cinco de Mayas later, thanks to big boxing bosses’ preference for past their sell date bouts, here Junior is against his worst nightmare come true. Will Floyd’s little pinky finger be able to man up against Manny or is this a repeat of his last Bayless orchestrated crybaby fest? The darnedest things he did to avoid the fight, backing off both the date, March 13th, 2010, and venue at MGM Floyd to avoid going head to head on PPV against Manny vs Joshua Clottey in their Cowboy Stadium debut and so on and so forth. Now each finally poised to rake a bigger purse than all but a few fighters have exceeded in their career earnings. That my friends is the sad legacy of this fight in a nutshell…R.I.P.
Edit: Wow, Only two days before the greediest fight in history, this blackeye hits the news outlet: