No, I do not sit around and clench my fists, and spend my energies on hoping and wishing and praying that Floyd Mayweather will get beat.
So when I put forth the notion that I think the man who calls himself TBE should tiptoe his most talented tush up to 160 pounds, so that he might find someone who can test him, I can't be dismissed as a hater, as an anti-Floyd guy who wants him to get his comeuppance at the hands of a stronger man.
Now, do I think it's debatable whether he is the BEST representation for our sport, whether the sport as a whole is best served by having Floyd as it's top dog? I do…and I think I'd take the stance that long-term the sport would be helped by having a more humble, less money focused, more offensive minded pugilist leading its charge. But that doesn't mean I dismiss the mans' chops. Floyd Mayweather is among the best ever as a defender, he's a defensive savant, and though I don't consider him really to be in the TBE mix simply because I personally believe offense is at least 75% the most important component when you are choosing traits of TBE, I do scream to the heavens that he's the best technical prizefighter of his generation.
But is he fan friendly to watch? No. One, because he doesn't fully commit offensively, and whether that's because he has brittle hands or is risk averse, that's his reasoning to share, or not.
Because he is so far and away more talented than anyone he steps in with, there is a distinct lack of drama when we watch Floyd. He makes A grade fighters looks C grade, makes the Pacquiaos and Canelos look like comparative amateurs.
So, should he make the leap up to 168, to get in with Andre Ward? That is a bridge too far, though I have in the past pondered having Ward drain to 164 to make that fantasy fight…but I think a middle ground, a leap from 154, where he's fought and performed well at, to 160, isn't asking too much from the man who asks us to call him TBE.
Of course, his passionate backers will take to Twitter and defend him like they are getting paid to do so.
Woods, he's not even a welterweight, they will cry..bizarrely, to me, as he totally is that, the best welterweight in the world…oh, and he's the best junior middle in the world, to boot. They say “he's a welterweight” like this is a guy who loads his pockets with lead to appear heavier than he is.
And I'm going to go out on a limb and say he's the best middleweight in the world, too.
Yep, I think if Floyd stepped to the line, and agreed to fight Gennady Golovkin, he'd better Golovkin.
That same instinct to protect the chin would be in effect if “Money” gave us that big drama show against the mean-fisted hitter from Kazahkstan. Would there be risk for Floyd? Uh, yeah, sure. There is risk for anyone gloving up in a pro bout, basically. But I sort of think his risk to reward ratio has been pretty kind to him to this point, no?
His backers will go back to pointing out how small he is, tell you that he walks around at 155 pounds max…and use a tone which suggests he's a woeful defender, who will be thrown to the wolves if he takes on a man in a weight class a step up from 154, where Floyd has held a belt. They use a tone which they don't employ for the dozens of other boxers who ply their trade with the grim knowledge that they are burning off brain cells, risking CTE, as they eat punches. Robert Guerrero, he eats a dozen filthy power punches a fight now, and his brain pain gets rattled all the time, and the Floyd fans seem OK with that fact. But asking the guy who says he's TBE to go out of his comfort zone, to a place where in fact the other guy might have the sort of power which could bother Mayweather, they make like that is asking for the sun and moon and stars. And…maybe it is.
Maybe those Golovkin fists are simply sledgehammers, and Floyd is too undersized to safely repel them. I posed this scenario to a guy who can speak to taking punches from someone who possesses a heavy power edge, Daniel Geale.
He was dropped twice by Miguel Cotto on Saturday night, and was in against a person who had a vast power edge over him, as, I guess, Triple G would over Floyd.
Geale doesn't possess the defensive skills that Floyd does, so that power edge became significantly apparent to the masses at Barclays Center and on HBO. I asked Geale, what about it, is it asking too much for Floyd Mayweather to hop up six pounds, take his majestic skills to the middleweight division, to face off against a man regarded as an A grade middleweight, Gennady Golovkin?
“I believe so, I think it's asking too much,” Geale told me. “And if he gets beat, then everyone will say, Well, he shouldn't a went up in weight. He's fighting guys so much bigger, so much stronger…and he is so skilled..but it just takes on punch. Boxing is a sport, you get hit with one punch, it can change a fighters' career, a fight. I want to see him gets tested. But I'm not sure about him going up that far. Maybe he will out-box Golovkin but, who knows?”
Indeed; I think sometimes I think more of Floyd's talent than some of his fans do. I think he handles middleweight, deals with and defuses Golovkin, but I think we will never know. Anyway, I will continue to add input from other boxers and such.
No surprise, Golovkins' trainer Abel Sanchez thinks Floyd should step to the line. “If you want to be considered as one of the greatest ever you have to take on challenges a mortal man could not and would not, time has shown us that,” Sanchez told me. “That jump is very possible, one of the GREATEST lightweights ever Roberto Duran moved up two weight divisions and challenged the great Sugar Ray Leonard and then jumped up two more weight divisions and fought the established great middleweight champion Marvelous Marvin Hagler, both fights were of the boxing history-making kind.”
He continued: “It appears that most observers do not consider GGG a proven champion, a hype some say, unlike the previous greats (mentioned at time they fought), so the weight should not be an issue, even though GGG has stated he would consider a lighter weight, Floyd vs GGG would go down as one of those history making fights.”
People need to be reminded that the true greats did leap up in weight class back in the day, Sanchez told me. “It is so easy to throw the “The Greatest Ever” monicker around, in order for it to apply it has to be compared to something, the real greats of the past,” he stated.
Sanchez doubled back a couple days later, to add a thought:
“A thought: How would a fight between Floyd vs Hagler be looked at, at middleweight, would Floyd be too small still? If that fight is possible in the minds of GGG haters and not against GGG, imagine what would the outcome of GGG vs Hagler would be.”
Shane Mosley doesn't think Floyd is suited to fight GGG at 160. “I don't think Mayweather fights at middleweight, he is just too small,” Mosley told me. “GGG would have to come down and fight him at 154. Mayweather is really like a 140 pounder. Even if they met at 154 it would be a hard fight cause GGG is a natural 160.”
And really, is the power SOOO different at 154 and 160?
“The power could be really different,” he said. “Depends on the fighter and what kind of snap they have.”
Do you think Floyd couldn't fight anyone at 160?
“I don't know,” Mosley said. “He could come up against certain fighters but not GGG.”
Tureano Johnson told me he thinks damn straight, Floyd could do a fight at 160. The Bahamian middleweight said that, “A naturally big middleweight, like Triple G, would be too much. But the Cottos, Geales, Moras and Monroes, I think Mayweather could beat. And yes, I think Triple G beats Floyd…to the body.”
Promoter Tom Loeffler is happy to have his kid carve and starve to 154. Well, not happy, but accepting of the fact that Floyd works the system and sucks every bit of leverage out of a deal that he can. “We don't want 154, but for Floyd Gennady would come down to 154,” Loeffler told me.