LAS VEGAS (Feb. 24, 2014) – After weeks of speculation, including feedback from fans across an array of social media platforms, boxing's pound-for-pound superstar, pay-per-view king and WBC Welterweight World Champion Floyd "Money" Mayweather will face the dangerous, power-punching WBA Welterweight World Champion Marcos "El Chino" Maidana on Saturday, May 3, live on SHOWTIME PPV.
Mayweather vs. Maidana, a 12-round world championship unification bout for Mayweather and Maidana's respective 147-pound titles, is promoted by Mayweather Promotions and Golden Boy Promotions. The event will be produced and distributed live by SHOWTIME PPV and is the third fight of a lucrative six-fight deal with Showtime Networks Inc.
Mayweather vs. Maidana will pit the brilliance of Mayweather against the power of the Argentine slugger.
Mayweather (45-0, 26 KOs), undeniably the sport's No. 1 pound-for-pound fighter and a 10-time world champion, is coming off of a spectacular 2013 in which he continued to display his ring prowess with dominating victories over Robert Guerrero and Canelo Alvarez. In Maidana, Mayweather is arguably facing the most demanding and troublesome opponent of his heralded, 17-year Hall Of Fame career.
"Marcos Maidana's last performance immediately brought him to my attention," said Mayweather, who celebrates his 37th birthday today. "He is an extremely skilled fighter who brings knockout danger to the ring. I think this is a great fight for me and he deserves the opportunity to see if he can do what 45 others have tried to do before him – beat me."
Maidana (35-3, 31 KOs), of Margarita, Santa Fe, Argentina, captured the attention of boxing and sports fans around the world with his thorough defeat of the highly regarded and undefeated Adrien Broner on Dec. 14, 2013. The 30-year-old impressively dominated Broner from the opening bell and registered two knockdowns against the three-time world champion. Maidana connected with a punishing 231 power punches in the bout en route to a unanimous decision by margins of 117-109, 115-109 and 115-110.
The resounding victory over the heavily favored Broner was the fourth in a row for the crowd-pleasing, offensive-minded Maidana. A former WBA 140-pound world champion, Maidana's hard-charging, aggressive style has earned him knockouts in 82 percent of his wins. The remarkable ratio of knockouts ties the late Diego Corrales and Jose Luis Castillo for the highest knockout percentage of any Mayweather opponent to date and is one of the highest of any current fighter at the world-class level.
"I am extremely happy to be facing Floyd Mayweather because it will give me the opportunity to show the world that I am the best welterweight in the division," said Maidana, who will represent throngs of Hispanic boxing fans on Cinco de Mayo when he faces the pound-for-pound king. "I just handed a great defensive fighter his first loss and I plan to do the same to Mayweather. I don't care whether he's the best and undefeated. I will bring some real Latino power to him on May 3rd."
"This is an extremely dangerous fight for Floyd as Marcos Maidana is a technical knock-out artist and continues to show us that he gets better with each fight," said Leonard Ellerbe, CEO of Mayweather Promotions. "Maidana showed so much in his last performance, he's clearly at the top of his game and a great match-up for Floyd."
Mayweather set in motion a flurry of online polls following a message posted to his Twitter and Instagram accounts (@floydmayweather) on Sunday, Feb. 2 asking fans to voice their opinion on his next opponent. Through the accumulation of more than 100,000 votes on the various online polls, more than 100,000 comments on Mayweather's Facebook and Instagram pages, as well as nonstop fan Tweets, Mayweather saw an overwhelming majority favor Maidana.
"In Marcos Maidana, Floyd Mayweather may be in for his toughest opponent ever," said Richard Schaefer, CEO of Golden Boy Promotions. "Maidana is the type of fighter who will find out if Floyd still belongs on top of the pound-for-pound list. He's strong, tough and aggressive. He in giving Adrien Broner his first loss, he showed that he won't be intimidated by talk, a big fight atmosphere or an unbeaten record. I give Floyd a lot of credit for stepping up to the plate and testing himself once again. He is a true warrior, and the fans will be the winners on May 3rd."
"The first two events in our partnership with Floyd Mayweather were incredible and SHOWTIME PPV is proud to present the next chapter in Floyd's remarkable career," said Stephen Espinoza, Executive Vice President and General Manager, SHOWTIME Sports®. "Marcos Maidana is a boxer whose fearsome power can change the trajectory of a fight with a single punch. Couple that with his ferocity and perseverance and you have the recipe for an incredible fight on the grandest stage of the sport."
Undefeated Floyd "Money" Mayweather, (45-0, 26 KOs), a 10-time world champion in five weight divisions, reaffirmed his worldwide popularity when he faced then- undefeated boxing phenom Canelo Alvarez last September. The mega-event, which set the record as the highest grossing pay-per-view event in television history with over $150 million in revenue, showed once again that Mayweather's drawing power is unlike any other. During Mayweather's extraordinary career, he has amassed wins over numerous world champions, including Arturo Gatti, Zab Judah, Oscar De La Hoya, Ricky Hatton, Juan Manuel Marquez, Shane Mosley, Victor Ortiz, Miguel Cotto, Robert Guerrero and most recently Canelo, marking the 45th win. Over the course of his pay-per-view career Mayweather has generated more than 12.8 million buys and over $800 million in revenue. The Grand Rapids, Mich., native, who fights out of Las Vegas, averages more than one million pay-per-view buys per event, which is the highest pay-per-view buy average of any boxer in history, and is the only fighter to participate in two events which generated over 2 million pay-per-view buys each. In 2007, Mayweather co-headlined a pay-per-view event with De La Hoya which generated the largest number of PPV buys in history. Mayweather has also been listed by Sports Illustrated (2012, 2013) and Forbes (2012) as the world's highest paid athlete in any sport.
Thirty-year-old Marcos "El Chino" Maidana (35-3, 31 KOs) stunned the boxing world in December when he defeated up-and-coming superstar Adrien Broner with an unforgettable performance. Hailing from Margarita, Santa Fe, Argentina, Maidana first emerged on the world scene in 2009, when he won the interim WBA Junior Welterweight World Championship with a stunning sixth-round technical knockout over Victor Ortiz. After three defenses of his title, Maidana lost a 2010 Fight of the Year candidate to Amir Khan, but he regained the belt with another classic against future Hall of Famer Erik Morales in 2011. In 2012, Maidana joined forces with renowned trainer Robert Garcia (2012 Trainer of the Year) and has since gone undefeated at 4-0 with 3 knockouts.
More details about the event will be announced shortly.
CONTACTS: Kelly Swanson/Lisa Milner/Flo Jocou, Swanson Communications/Mayweather Promotions: (202) 783-5500
Nicole Craig, Mayweather Promotions: (702) 807-1788
Marylyn Aceves/Ramiro Gonzalez, Golden Boy Promotions: (213) 489-5631
Chris DeBlasio, Showtime Networks Inc.: (212) 708-1633
Annie Van Tornhout, Showtime Networks Inc.: (212) 708-1663
Nicole Chayet, Showtime Networks Inc.: (212) 708-7319
John Beyrooty/Matt Donovan, BZA/SHOWTIME: (562) 233-7477/(818) 462-5613
Media Credentials: www.magnamedia.com