The year seems to have flown by in a flash of sorts. Certainly, there have been a number of highly entertaining bouts within the boxing world as well as the fair share of leaden fruitcakes with those grotesque dried fruits encased around a preservative-heavy high-fructosey spongecake.
Those are the types that leave a foul taste in your mouth and the type of lasting memory you'd soon choose to forget. Speaking of unsavory and less than palatable pugilistic aromas, we may be having a difficult time diverting our attention from the constant drumbeat of the consummate “fantasy faceoff,” the possibility of a matchup between Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather, Jr.
There was a brief moment in time back in 2009 or perhaps 2010 when Bob Arum's Top Rank Promotions actually included a link on their website which allowed fans and casual listeners alike to tune into an open phone line in the hopes that Mayweather would call in and say, “yes” to a bout with the Filipino superstar.
Of course, those who were glued to their respective computer screens were not even treated to a dial tone as the call, as expected, never came. We're now just a few weeks away from the year 2015. I fear that we will look back to 2015 as yet another year that Floyd and Manny get no closer to fighting than we get to really savoring every scrumptious morsel of Aunt Betty's annual cakebomb, er, most thoughtful fruitcake delivery.
There's been rumblings of all sorts in the past ten days or so. It goes without blatantly saying so that the sporting public in general is long since fed up with the antics (on each side, for whatever reason) with the mega matchup still failing to materialize. At this point, there is nowhere left to go for either man. The amount of money to be made for both competitors is beyond staggering and potential hosts are coming out of the proverbial woodwork. Quickly, let's look at few suitors looking to impress. There is of course Las Vegas, yet the capacity of the MGM Grand Garden Arena is better situated for basketball.
The real world's version of Monte Burns, Jerry Jones, has offered his monstrosity of a stadium in Arlington, Texas more than once as a site for the bout.
Last week, a high ranking individual in the United Arab Emirates was reportedly prepared to come up with a purse upwards of two hundred million dollars. It would be a big thumb in the eye to the paying public if the bout took place outside of the United States. For starters, many people can't find Abu Dhabi or Dubai on a map and let's not forget that although the UAE is a glowing jewel of a tourist destination and has more relaxed regulations than other countries in the region, gambling is forbidden there. Sports betting, however, has at times been allowed. The lure for many of a bout in Las Vegas is the casinos and the 24/7 availability of the action.
This week's release of college football's version of the final four has indicated that an undefeated record by a defending champion doesn't necessarily indicate that they're the best of the best. Perhaps those of the opinion that Manny Pacquiao is a “B Side” of the potential showdown should check a few facts. For example, how many “B Side” participants have the bulk of a continent behind them? Likewise, does street crime halt in Las Vegas whenever Floyd Mayweather, Jr. takes to the ring?
Speaking of, there are several quality bouts taking place in Sin City this weekend which feature a few fighters that are more than ready to take the sport closer to the mainstream than two who just can't seem to agree on anything. Quite frankly, the back and forth bickering is just plain bad for our beloved sport. Like, much worse than Aunt Betty's fruitcake bad. Here's hoping Aunt Betty finds a new recipe, and so do Manny and Floyd–this recipe being one that results in a sweet concoction of fistic fury.