All was quiet for so very on long on the western as well as eastern fronts. External pressures at last forced the sport of boxing’s two biggest commodities to paint themselves into such a corner that verbal jabs were no longer sufficient. The only corners that would matter this time would be the four which help encompass the squared circle. The only jabs would be the ones that snap at the elbow in the hopes of creating the perfect effect. Would the forthcoming titanic matchup between Manny and Money have been as popular as the memes which portray it in a million different ways had it gone down as originally planned?
A better choice of words would be hoped or clamored for, but would a win for either Floyd Mayweather, Jr. or Manny Pacquiao in say, 2009, still hold its weight in the heaviest of metals today?
How can talk possibly be cheap if the average ticket price for the May 2nd bout is pushing five digits? Lastly, if this bout is indeed five to six years too late as so many have moaned, then why did the bout dominate the headlines across many a sports network last week?
The most ardent of boxing fan can possibly be elated that the fight is finally a reality, yet annoyed that the average “sports reporter” couldn’t tell you that for example, Manny Pacquiao was not undefeated before he lost two consecutive bouts in 2012. Here they come and from all angles and no, it’s not the British. Not just the British, anyway.
Out of the proverbial woodwork dash the legions of media and the respective circus they pull alongside them. As stated in a previous article, “The Fight of the Century” (which should always and respectfully stay attached to either Jack Johnson vs. Jim Jeffries or Joe Louis vs. Max Schmeling I & II for the actual political as well as social implications) is more a case of wants versus needs. Everyone wants it, but the sport doesn’t at all costs need it. A quick explanation or at least an excuse for such an opinion. We were for the most part collectively prepared to move on without it and debate for decades who was believed to hold the brunt of the blame if the bout never transpired. Instead, what many are now stuck with is an outsider’s view of a brash air of exclusivity which would have been better suited for a nine hundred seat ballroom in filthy rich Monaco.
It could be one which is comparable to the crowd who Gennady Golovkin entertained last Saturday. It ultimately boils down to an unfortunate but necessary evil. The average fan can’t rightfully justify or even drop enough hallucinogens to pay a minimum of four thousand dollars to attend the bout by themselves. The fight has had so many years to sell itself, so not much else is really needed in the buildup. We’ll get dual networks and announcers working together and ring walks emceed by separate fellows. One will rumble and the other will ask to get the show on the road.
A final tidbit. The 22nd Amendment to the United States Constitution prohibits a president from seeking a third term. Shortly before his May 5, 2012 bout with Miguel Cotto, Floyd Mayweather, Jr. told sociologist and academic Michael Eric Dyson in a primetime television interview, “To show you how much power Floyd Mayweather got, I can guarantee you this. If I was to fight Manny Pacquiao, I’d let Barack Obama walk me to the ring and holding my belt.” Well, wouldn’t that be a sight? The President could walk the champion to the ring and not have to worry about his approval rating. Maybe that’s really why we had to wait six long years.
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