WBC welterweight titlist Andre Berto has decided to use his Twitter account to stir up talk for a probable/possible/potential/unlikely (who can keep track anymore?) January fight with WBA titlist Shane Mosley, and boy is it...something.
Is Shane_Mosley that desperate talkin all this crazy s**t no knowing he's makin himself look like a dumb ass like he did with floyd
Shane_Mosley Boy I will shread yo ass up. U poppin smack at the wrong one iam not floyd
His ol lady had the pants in the realationship now she's gone so he's startin to speak up like a big boy ha ha I see u Shane_Mosley
U know what I don't even think I want to fight Shane_Mosley u know he's know for takin them steroids prolly got some in his pocket now
It's all pretty, uh...Jesus, I don't even know the word I want to use here. Desperate? Boring? Irrelevant? It's out of character for Berto, who's a pretty nice dude, and it just smacks as a clumsy attempt at getting people to talk about the fight. Mosley-Berto is a good enough fight that it should sell itself, but getting this fight made is apparently like pulling freaking teeth here. Mosley and Golden Boy aren't thrilled having been jerked around with a December date that fell through thanks to HBO moving Kelly Pavlik-Paul Williams into that spot, and now HBO reaps what they sow as Pavlik has pulled out again leaving Paul Williams-TBA with an undecided co-feature for a card that doesn't even have a venue anymore.
Berto and promoter Lou DiBella seem willing to fight, but who knows what they want money-wise? As I've said before, it appears that HBO has created a monster with Berto, as they overpaid him for mismatches, showcases and record-fluffing fights in the past. When it was rumored that there could be a Mosley-Clottey / Berto-Hlatshwayo double-header in December, the rumor was that HBO offered Berto about what they've been paying him, and whether it's actually any bigger or more competitive a fight than his past bouts, Berto-Hlatshwayo would be a unification bout. On paper, that should be worth more.
HBO wanted to create a star in Berto, but the truth is, stars aren't created in boxing. This isn't pro wrestling. Stars make themselves. HBO shoved Jermain Taylor at us, and it never quite took off, even though Taylor did some good things. Berto is only a marginally bigger name now than he was when HBO started regularly featuring his smash fests as he rose up the ranks at 147 pounds. His biggest fight ever is still Luis Collazo this past January, and that was a Boxing After Dark main event. A good fight, yes. A tough fight, yes. But not a particularly big fight. Neither was his summer bout with Juan Urango.
It just feels like this fight is taking way too much effort to make all things considered. Mosley should be dying to get into the ring in January. He'll have been off a year by that point, and he'd still be a favorite against the younger Berto, whose "0" he could take, a pretty nice way to call out Floyd Mayweather were he to win. And for Berto this would be by far his biggest fight, and a win would elevate him to a level, frankly, where he might be able to get a fight with Mayweather himself. He'd be an appealing, dynamic young guy with a spotless record and a huge win over Mosley.
All this delay and negotiation and talk from both sides, and we're talking about a matchup that nearly happened in January 2009 when Antonio Margarito nearly pulled out of his fight with Mosley. From all accounts -- including Shane himself -- Mosley-Berto was good to go if Margarito backed out. Now here we are with both of them at better places than they were then, and it's a long, drawn-out process.
Unless one of them can now get Joshua Clottey in January -- which is a possibility now, I suppose -- there isn't a better fight at 147 for either of them. Cotto and Pacquiao are busy. Floyd's not fighting either of them in January.
I say remain confident that Mosley-Berto comes off, but don't expect any type of formal announcement in the next week or anything.
Twitter. For God's sake.