Interesting to hear Floyd Mayweather playing the race card just a few days before his huge fight against Juan Manuel Marquez. Here’s what the Pretty Boy had to say about his perceived unfair treatment by the media, according to ESPN.com
“If you’re rich, you’re a rich n—–,” he said. “If you’re poor, you’re a poor n—-. If you’re smart, you’re a smart n—–. At the end of the day, they still look at me as a n—–”….
Reaction: As a goofy white guy, of course I can’t put myself in Floyd’s shoes and pretend I know what it’s like to be a black man. But in my experience covering the sport, Mayweather seems to be treated fairly and I like him a lot personally. I’ve never seen him turn down an autograph, pose for a picture or shake someone’s hand; which has always impressed me. He’s also a great interview. Why he would chose to go this route only three days from the biggest fight of his career is a mystery. In my opinion, he’s been grossly overpaid in his career, because he doesn’t sell pay-per-views and doesn’t put butts in seats. He’s also not an exciting fighter, because he’s overly cautious and fights defensively. Yet he’s a multi-millionaire and a superstar in his sport. So how is he being disrespected?
“This country needs to be more positive,” he said. “We’re already at war. We’re in a recession, we’re at war and we continue to be negative. The fans in the UK showed me more love than in my own country. That’s crazy … Sometimes I’ll sit back, I’ll be in my theater sometimes, and I’ll think: ‘Imagine if I was the same fighter that I am, and I was the same person that I am, and I was from another country. Can you just imagine how big I’d be? But I wouldn’t change my life for nothing in the world. There’s nothing like being young, black and rich. But there are certain things you think about. If Floyd Mayweather was white, I’d be the biggest athlete in America. The biggest, the biggest. I know that for a fact.”
Reaction: I think Floyd is full of it on this count, because black fighters have been hugely popular over the years and adored by white fans. Has he forgotten about Joe Louis, Muhammad Ali, Sugar Ray Robinson, Mike Tyson and Sugar Ray Leonard? Sure, Ali was despised by white America during the Vietnam era, but since then opinion has changed completely and he’s now idolized. As for the rest, they were hugely popular in their primes and white people couldn’t wait to make them independantly wealthy.
I know Floyd is frustrated he’s not adored like his predecessors, but that has more to do with boxing’s fall in popularity than some perceived animosity against him. Unfortunately, boxing is not nearly as popular as it used to be and fallen almost completely off the sports radar. If not for the hispanic fans, the sport might cease to exist. The Pretty Boy just happens to be fighting in an era where boxing isn’t a major sport anymore.
Next, Floyd gave his thoughts about comparisons between himself and Oscar De La Hoya:
“One thing you never hear. You never hear anything negative about Oscar De La Hoya,” he said. “Anything he do negative, it gets swept under the rug.”
Reaction: I don’t remember Oscar going to strip joints, making it rain and having people associated with him firing guns outside a skating rink. As far as I know, De La Hoya also has not been accused of failing to pay his taxes and stiffing creditors. Floyd sounds jealous and petty bringing this up. Sure, Oscar had a wild lifestyle back in the day and a lot if it was swept under the rug by Team De La Hoya and some of his lackeys in the press. But Floyd has also done his share of partying. Love him or hate him, The Golden Boy has been great for boxing and almost single-handedly kept the sport alive for 15 years. Mayweather simply does not have Oscar’s drawing power and that’s not going to change.
Not finished yet, Mayweather then ripped into the HBO broadcast team:
“Larry Merchant don’t know nothing about boxing,” Mayweather said. “What’s that other guy’s name [at HBO]? [Emanuel Steward]. He’s an Uncle Tom.”
Reaction: Sure, Merchant has never been in the ring, but it’s silly to say he doesn’t know anything about boxing. Personally, I’m not a fan of Merchant and think he should have been jettisoned from HBO long ago, but he is a respected journalist and does know the sport.
As for calling Steward an “Uncle Tom,” that is outrageous, unfair and racist. Floyd owes Manny an apology and should be ashamed of himself for stating this publicly. I don’t know what Mayweather’s problem is with Steward, but this needs to be addressed by HBO and the Pretty Boy needs to apologize.
And here’s a report of Floyd’s recent troubles, again from ESPN.com:
“Tuesday, it was reported that Mayweather is being sued by a bank in Las Vegas for more than $167,000 unpaid on a loan for a half-million-dollar luxury car. Also, county records in Las Vegas show Mayweather has one unresolved lien with the Internal Revenue Service for $6.17 million in unpaid taxes from 2007. Other records show homeowners associations, the state of New Jersey and a trash collector have also claimed Mayweather did not pay bills.
Mayweather was not asked about the financial issues in his chat with reporters, but on a recent episode of HBO’s Mayweather/Marquez “24/7,” which is documenting the fighters as they prepare for Saturday’s match, he said: “I got a good relationship with the IRS; they ain’t took nothing away from me.”
In late August, Las Vegas police investigating a shooting outside a skating rink seized two handguns, ammunition and two bulletproof vests from the home and two cars of Mayweather. He was not named as a suspect in the investigation and was never charged.”
Again, I like Floyd personally and he’s always been good to me. He’s also a great fighter whom I believe will win his fight against Marquez Saturday night….
But I wish he’d stay away from the race card and lashing out at others involved in the sport….