The $100 price tag isn’t scaring many away from buying the Floyd Mayweather vs. Manny Pacquiao super fight on pay-per-view tonight, May 2nd. That says a lot about Mayweather and Pacquiao. But there are plenty of people who want to boycott the fight. That says a lot about Mayweather, too.
Here we are again at the crossroads between entertainment and moral compass. Do we cheer and pay for the sport and entertainment side that the Mayweather-Pacquiao fight offers? Do we turn our heads and hold up the newspaper as the fight goes on in an effort to take a stance?
Me? I’m buying the fight. Or at least contributing towards the purchase of the PPV event.
Should you? That’s not for me or anyone else to answer. No one should tell you how to spend your money or what you should believe in. If you can’t separate sports and entertainment from the lives the athletes and entertainers live outside of their arena, that’s okay.
I can. And tonight, I will.
I don’t believe Floyd Mayweather is a good person. I don’t think he even knows what that means. I’m sure he does great things for certain people, but being arrested or cited for domestic violence seven different times involving five women goes past an accident or a mistake. It’s a chronic problem. It’s inexcusable.
Mayweather doesn’t want to spend
much any time on the topic. He resorts to the argument that there are no pictures and everything is hearsay. He uses the tired quote of “Only God can judge me” when expressing that everyone has their own opinions.
You could save the $100 that will in one way or another find its way into Mayweather’s bank account. But he’s getting about $120 million regardless. By not buying the fight, we’re preventing him for reaching $180 million? Does it matter? If you want to use that money and donate to domestic violence charities, go ahead. I respect that. But do it, don’t post a Facebook status about doing it. “Money” Mayweather is getting his regardless. My $100 is hardly going to change that even if everyone in the state of Arizona joined me.
Mayweather has been questioned numerous times during his fight promotions about his domestic violence cases. Predictably, he dodges questions like they’re punches. He gives the same answer almost every time. “Tune in May 2nd to Mayweather-Pacquiao. It’s a fight you can’t miss.” He’s a master promoter. He doesn’t hide his love of money, and I’m not going to blame or judge him for that. But that’s the same answer he always gives when asked about anything other than his next opponent.
Do I wish he would talk about the domestic violence cases? Sure. But those cases have been settled in court. He doesn’t owe it to anyone to talk about his personal life on camera. Does that make what he did right? Of course not. Does that mean he has to tell every microphone why he did it, why he settled or why hasn’t he been suspended? No, it doesn’t.
So when Rachel Nichols questions him asking him about why people should root for him and he avoids the topic, should we be surprised? How is it any different than Bill Belichick not wanting to talk about next week’s opponent in depth? The topic is different, but neither is required to talk about the topic, and neither does.
She then asks if he’ll donate money to any an organization that prevents and educates against abuse. He says he’ll make money for his children. Again, who’s to tell someone how to spend their money?
I think Nichols is better at her job than most, but Mayweather doesn’t have to admit or deny what happened. Everything has been sorted out in court, and the boxing commission chose not to punish him. The second part isn’t Mayweather’s fault. The first part is his choice. What’s done is done. That doesn’t make what he did right, but it also doesn’t require a tell-all portion of every interview.
He’s cocky and arrogant, but he’s calculated. Everything he does and says in front of the microphone is with one thought in mind: money. Right or wrong? Not for me to say. But he’s not wrong when he says he’s boxing’s cash cow. This fight is no different.
He’s the biggest draw in the sport of boxing. He might be the only boxer, and this might be the only fight, that can draw in the casual fan. I’m less-than-casual, and it’s a spectacle I don’t want to miss. The narrative with Mayweather is he’s boring and defensive. He doesn’t hurt guys. He doesn’t knock anyone out. Yet, he always wins. He’s 47-0. He’s doing something right.
On the other side of the ring is Pacquiao. He’s long been considered Mayweather’s biggest challenge. While pundits say that about everyone Mayweather fights, this time might actually be different. Did Pacquiao present a a better chance at beating him five years ago? Who cares. We’re getting it, and as a casual observer, I’m just glad we’re getting it.
Throw in the biggest draw in the sport, an undefeated trash-talking Mayweather, against his biggest challenge yet in Pacquiao, and you’ve got a can’t-miss sporting event. It’s a little more important than your Sunday Night Baseball game that you see every week.
Throwing more fuel into the Mayweather hate is the news that female reporters Michelle Beadle and Nichols were banned from covering the fight tonight at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. Beadle has been outspoken on her thoughts of Mayweather and Nichols grilled Mayweather on his domestic violence cases in the wake of Ray Rice’s NFL suspension. Now, neither will be allowed to attend the event. It’s a move I think is cowardly on the side of Mayweather’s side, but it doesn’t make the fight any less intriguing.
I crushed the NFL for how it handled the Ray Rice situation. I’d crush whoever is in charge of boxing that hasn’t suspended Mayweather, too. I don’t think he should be boxing after all of these crimes. But suspending Mayweather or punishing him isn’t my job. If he’s out there, in a fight of this magnitude, I’m going to watch.
Is your money–whether it’s spent directly in the form of the PPV or spent on wings and beer at a bar showing it–going to support Mayweather’s bank account? Yeah, and maybe it doesn’t feel good knowing that it was your dollar that went into buying him another car or help pay for his $17 million mansion. But if you’re going to do that, then you can’t watch a Dallas Cowboys game that Greg Hardy plays in. Your viewership is helping pay his contract. Don’t watch sports at all, because that viewership is providing dollars going into a lot of pockets of people who break the law and don’t “deserve” it for their off-the-field actions. Don’t buy a product off a shelf that was made by someone whose hit his wife before. It’s a slippery slope that’s setting you up for hypocritical situations in the future.
Mayweather is arrogant. He’s a promoter as much as he is a boxer. He’s all about the paycheck. He’s abused multiple women and shows zero remorse for it in front of the camera. If that keeps you from taking out your credit card tonight, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that. But you can’t go back and take away the money he’s made. This is one isolated fight. And there’s nothing wrong with spending your money on the product you see on camera, despite how bad the person you’re watching is off of it.