So he turned up his nose at $65 million bucks. Floyd Mayweather, with $65 million reasons to say yes, instead said no, I will not at this time fight Manny Pacquiao.
Difficult to believe, isn't it? We've all played the game “what would you do for a million dollars?” game with pals, and suffice to say, the bulk of us would allow ourselves to be semi debased and disgraced in exchange for securing a fat pile of loot. $65 million, even chopped up into portions for the taxman, and management types, is actually an obscene pile of loot.
The liberal softie in me does some math calculations in my head, dreams of all the good that $65 million could do. Starving kids in Africa could get plenty of nourishment for a long spell with that dough. You could build a real nice cancer wing in a big city hospital for that. And the jokester in me points out that you could get the IRS off your back if you owed him back taxes, if you said yes to $65 million.
But Floyd said no.
Promoter Bob Arum told videographer Elie Seckbach that despite his being an optimist, he now believes Mayweather will never fight Pacquiao. Arum said last week “legitimate people” from Signapore put $65 million on the table for Mayweather to meet Pacman, and “he turned it down…What does that tell you? It tells you he doesn't want to fight Manny Pacquiao.”
“Everybody who knows boxing knows Manny Pacquiao would clean his clock,” said Arum, skillfully speaking to Mayweather's ego, trying to get him to take the bait, and spurn all those people who know boxing. (By the way, count me out in this Arum scenario…I still lean toward Mayweather, one of if not THE best defender boxing has ever seen, if and when he and Pacquiao meet. I thought Manny took a half step back against Mosley, and wasn't impressed at times with his footwork as he tried to track down Mosley, who was in “not be hit” mode for 95% of the night.)
Arum said Floyd's legacy will take a hit if he doesn't fight Manny, that his record should be 41-1, because he has ducked Manny.
You might think that I will now delve into conjecture, and ponder reasons why Mayweather hasn't embraced the challenge. You might suspect that I will offer my belief that Mayweather enjoys the thrill of the chase as much as the actual preparation and combat, that he gets off on being wooed, on being romanced. You might think I'll offer some speculation on his psyche, talk about his fear of losing, of a fragility of ego. But I won't.
It's time for all of us to ditch the speculation, end the water cooler chats, cease the discussion as to why Mayweather won't fight Pacquiao.
Mayweather has made up his mind, and we have reached the point where the situation is ludicrous. Too much time has been wasted on trying to convince this man to do something he's not inclined to do. For two years, the keyboard tappers have churned out column after column, talking about blood tests, and PED allegations, and played amateur shrink as we covered the “will he or won't he” drama…Well, the drama has become stale, played out. The plotlines have been exhausted. There is nothing new, nothing fresh to be reported. What's next, Floyd will be offered $100 million to fight Pacquiao, and will turn that down?
Let's move on and deal with the concrete, with athletes who unabashedly seek the the challenges that make great sportsmen into legends. Let's focus on the people who don't shrink from the possibility of failure, for whatever reason, and luxuriate in what it is that makes them what they are. Let's let Mayweather fade away, build his brand, brag about his bets, however he wants to spend his time, and if and when he's ready to rock, and sign on to meet Manny, then we'll play along.