Below the Belt 07.10.09: Mayweather Hate Edition
Posted by Patrick Mullin on 07.10.2009
Since when is being great a reason to catch so much hate? Read on, as we get our fill with twice the bitterness!
Below the Belt: Mayweather Hate Edition
There was a time when being the best fighter of your generation meant adulation and respect from the people who watched your era of dominance. Why is it that arguably the greatest fighter of not only his own era, but the last several eras of boxing then is in the same boat as the late Rodney Dangerfield and getting no respect?
When Floyd Mayweather finally announced what many saw as an inevitable comeback, the question remained who would his opponent be? While many hoped for a dream match with Manny Pacquiao or an exciting showdown with Miguel Cotto or Shane Mosley, Mayweather chose unlikely candidate Juan Manuel Marquez.
Marquez, currently a champion in the lightweight division, seemed like an odd choice. Mayweather hasn't fought at 135 pounds in close to 6 years, not to mention that Marquez only made his lightweight debut in his last fight, otherwise having made his home in the featherweight and junior lightweight divisions over the course of his career. Still, Marquez is seen by the vast majority as the #2 active pound for pound fighter in the world behind only Manny Pacquiao, his arch-rival with whom he's fought to two disputed decisions, one a draw and one a split decision loss.
For whatever reason, people immediately began questioning Mayweather's motivations. Why is he taking on a lighter fighter, why isn't he fighting Pacquiao, why isn't he doing this or that, etc etc. People were acting as if Floyd was some big, physically imposing menace ala Paul Williams trying to find as small a fighter with as high regard as possible for some cheap credit.
I guess the part of that hate stems from poor short term memory, as for the majority of his fighting career, and most especially in his bigger fights, Floyd has been the naturally smaller man. He's moved up and given away size against Castillo, Corley, N'dou, Gatti, Baldomir, Judah, De la Hoya, and even Ricky Hatton was the naturally bigger man when they locked horns. Why does Floyd always have to be the small man, yet when he's finally the one with a size advantage all of a sudden he's a bully?
Then the July 18th fight date was postponed when Floyd made an announcement that he suffered a rib injury in training camp. "Experts", including some in our very own 411Family were quick to say that Floyd was running scared. So a guy lays off for two years, then gets into a rigorous training routine preparing for the second best fighter in the sport, and its out of the question he was taking on too much too soon?
The more logical theory of faking a rib injury that emerged, was that when Mayweather saw Miguel Cotto suffer a vicious cut above his eye in his victory over Joshua Clottey, that he thought it would take Miguel out of the running for a potential fight with Manny Pacquiao, and Floyd could move in on said opportunity. When negotiations between the Pacquiao and Cotto camps went forward anyway, Mayweather immediately rescheduled his bout with Marquez for September, two months prior to the rumored date of the Pacquiao-Cotto bout.
Why all the hate for this guy? Is it because he constantly runs his mouth and there's nobody who can shut it? You know what? If nobody can shut his mouth why doesn't he have the right to run it?
How many guys are there who can say they've beaten everyone they ever faced, including close to a dozen world champions? How many guys are there who've had 30+ fights and still don't have a blemish on their record without taking a gimmie in over a decade? He's beaten Hall of Famers with no controversy and hasn't ducked anyone regardless of what people will try to claim. What the hell does Floyd have to do to get some respect? Its sickening to watch a guy who could be the greatest boxer to ever live get nothing but disrespect from the people who claim to love the sport and appreciate the talent its top stars bring.http://www.411mania.com/boxing/columns/109751
Who exactly hates Mayweather? I'm not sure who this article is aimed at but I thought it was worth sharing.
The main problem I have with Mayweather is that he does go on about having dominated all the divisions he has fought in. In the early years I would tend to agree, but who has he fought at LWW, WW and LMW in relation to who he hasn't fought for whatever reason? Of course it's unreasonable to expect a guy to fight the very best fighters, fight after fight. Surely though to dominate each division you have to beat some if no all of the top 3 or 4 fighters in each division? Or am I being naive?
I doubt there has ever been a beter athlete and technician in boxing, but for me there is a sense of unfulfillment about Floyd's career. And he does talk an awful lot of shite, and does not know how to respond graciously to questions over his position in the sport.