How do you beat a man who continues to evolve into whatever it takes to win? Simple. Take the game away from the ring and do whatever you can to marginalize his career, ridicule his legacy, and muck up the discourse with tabloid gossip outrage.
It’s something I’ve dubbed The Mayweather Hate Boogie
Every guy he fights will be a bum after the fact and every big name out there will be the guy Mayweather is “scared” of and “ducking.” And if he faces someone he’s “ducking,” expect that fear-inspiring beast to instantly become a limp-wristed tomato can.
There’s a nauseating double standard when it comes to Mayweather and I’ve touched on it several times before. No need to go there again. Most of the problem is that the narrative of the sport is being written by jealous, vindictive media shills and pot-bellied boxing blog “experts” who, apparently, became experts because they watched their televisions really, really intently.
Any fair-minded person with a working knowledge of the sport is not so quick to line up at the Mayweather lynching, even though they may have real reservations about the character of the man or his overall place in history. You simply can’t watch the man ply his craft and then proceed to shit on the effort– unless you have a raging vendetta going or are just too dim-witted to understand what you’ve seen.
I find the Present vs. Past argument in boxing to be especially pointless. Would Mayweather be able to thrive in the era of Sugar Ray Robinson? However, the equal and opposite question is never asked– Could Sugar Ray Robinson thrive in this modern era of one or two fights a year and eight-figure paydays?
Build me a time machine and we’ll find out. Until then, this is all message board fantasy talk.
The critics seem to believe, though, that modern fighters would have more historical street cred if they fought four or five scrubs a year to go along with their two main stage bouts. Remember, the great Sugar Ray Robinson fought fourteen times in 1942 and had impressive wins over Jake LaMotta and Fritzie Zivic that year; He also fought some real club-level filler that was as competitively-matched as a typical sparring session in this day and age.
The Past and Present of boxing just can’t be fairly compared. Two way different animals.
Rebuilding the Mayweather Image
A lot has been made about Showtime treating Mayweather with kid gloves before, during, and after this first fight of his six-fight deal with the network.
Well, yeah, it’s true. It’s obvious that they’re trying to rebuild Mayweather’s all-around negative image. So what? Are we expecting honesty and true hard-hitting analysis when it comes to how a network treats their own contractual players? This has been going on since networks started signing fighters to exclusive deals. What is Showtime going to do– discourage people from buying their pay-per-view?
HBO is no less guilty of selling their own house fighters. It’s just that HBO chose to sell Mayweather as the “bad guy” and would routinely antagonize him during his own post-fight interviews.
Showtime wants to make him warm and fuzzy and portray him as a “changed man.”
Again, just as I’ve pointed out with websites that take advertising money from promoters and managers, take every editorial decision of HBO and Showtime with a grain of salt. The networks exist, primarily, to sell a product. Don’t ever forget that.
Mayweather and the Media
There’s so much silliness coming from the dedicated critics and vendetta-riding fake moralists that it’s hard to keep up with the latest and the stupidest. But from trolling social media, this is what I’ve found:
Apparently, from what I gather, the argument is being made that boxing’s undisputed best fighter is not all that good (kinda boring and kinda scared) and the sport’s biggest attraction, by far, is not really an attraction at all (MGM tickets were a hard sell?).
Well, that at least makes it easier to spot the water heads from the rest of the bunch. It’s that lack of critical thinking that gives them away as the dick-headed shills they truly are.
We even had one metrosexual faux expert predict a close, competitive bout and then change his “official” prediction to a one-sided romp after he decided to pen a crybaby piece about one of his cohorts in crime being denied press credentials for the fight.
It’s fair to criticize a fighter’s level of opposition, but the criticism has to be done in proper context. Okay, maybe Guerrero was way overmatched. So, who else was there to fight? The landscape isn’t exactly littered with Mayweather-level welters or junior middleweights– especially those with an actual realistic chance of being allowed to sign on the dotted line. Or are we still pretending that Bob Arum hasn’t gone out of his way to ignore the very existence of Floyd Mayweather as a potential opponent for his guys?
Whatever the case, Mayweather will keep being Mayweather and the critics will keep doing The Mayweather Hate Boogie. It would be nice if we could all just sit back and enjoy a once-in-a-lifetime talent, but so much about boxing these days is not really about boxing. It’s a shame.
You can email Paul at firstname.lastname@example.org or watch as he gleefully burns bridges with the beard-stroking bloggers who were bullied into no longer “liking” him . Paul is a full member of the Burger King Kids’ Club, a born iconoclast, and an ordained minister in the Universal Life Church.
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