The biggest story in boxing the last two weeks has been: Will they or won’t they? Will Floyd and Manny get it on? In May? Early May, late May? Or maybe November? Or maybe in Neveruary?
Count promoter Lou DiBella among those that think we should stop the wheel-spinning, the bloviating, the masturbatory babbling about a Mayweather-Pacquiao fight, and simply concentrate on concrete situations, makeable fights featuring compelling athletes who want to fight each other.
I chatted with Combustible Lou, and yes, he got combustible at the tail end of the chat, spewing a string of eff bombs when he tired of my queries of Mayweather-Pacquiao right after we chatted about the March 17 middleweight tangle at the Madison Square Garden Theater, which pits Sergio Martinez against Matthew Macklin.
“I’m through talking about Pacquiao and May,” the promoter told NYFightBlog. “The two most recognizable names in boxing, closest thing to our Super Bowl. Well, guess what, our Super Bowl hasn’t happened in a couple years and I’m guessing it won’t happen on May 5. How big a tragedy is that? The tragedy is the people asking this effin question too many effin times, that’s the effin tragedy. The tragedy is pay attention to the sport, and realize that these two emeffers aren’t the sport, the same way that Mike Tyson wasn’t the sport. HBO had its greatest success when Tyson was fighting across the street at Showtime.”
Yes, DiBella isn’t among those thinking that this time, Mayweather and Manny will both approach each other in a spirit of compromise, and show that they truly want to fight each other by indicating that they don’t want every contractual term to favor them. “There’s no door open, that fight’s not happening May 5, I think we all know that.”
DiBella has a theory on why there might be a lack of willingness in Team Pacquiao to fight Floyd.
“Everything Juan Manuel Marquez does well Floyd does five times as well. Marquez didn’t win 30 seconds of his fight against Floyd. Marquez’ style gave Pacquiao fits, explain to me where Pacquiao’s chances lie in beating Mayweather? I don’t think he has any. I think if anything’s clear right now, is that it’s a very bad fight for Manny Pacquiao. It appears to me the people around Pacquiao and Pacquiao may believe that.”
Some folks wonder if maybe we had a central authority to look out for the sport as a whole, a league and a commissioner, perhaps, this Super Bowl would happen. Would that help, Combustible Lou?
“If no one can force Mayweather to fight Pacquiao, in a fight that will probably generate $150 million, then how can you force any fight to happen? Bob Arum and Top Rank, most of the fights they make involve a Top Rank fighter against a Top Rank fighter,” DiBella said. “That seems to be the trend, rather than the biggest fights happening, it’s the ones that make the most economic sense, and pose the least risk. That’s not good for fans, that’s not good for boxing. It’s unfortunate, but there’s not a single entity out there that can force Mayweather-Pacquiao to happen.”
Dibella offered another route, to build up the sport instead of staying static talking about the theoretical. “Make the best fights you can make without Mayweather-Pacquiao, elevate the sport of boxing, try and make it so you have some heavyweights who people recognize the names of, see if you can find an American or two to challenge (the Klitschkos), because God knows it ain’t Seth Mitchell and let’s see if we can just make good fights, because talking about a fight that doesn’t happen and can’t force is sort of a waste of time.”