Floyd Mayweather Jr. weighs in while Juan Manuel Marquez looks at the scale. We now know that Marquez was seeing just how much money was being tacked on to his paycheck tomorrow. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
Dan Rafael of ESPN.com reports that Floyd Mayweather Jr. will be forced to pay $600,000 for weighing in two pounds over weight this evening for tomorrow night's fight with Juan Manuel Marquez.
The excess weight will cost Mayweather $300,000 per pound, meaning Marquez will get an additional $600,000 on top of his $3.2 million guarantee, a source told ESPN.com. Mayweather's minimum guarantee is $10 million, a figure likely to dramatically increase after the pay-per-view receipts are counted.
Schaefer would not disclose the dollar figure, but another source with direct knowledge of the contract told ESPN.com that the penalty was $300,000 per pound if either fighter was overweight.
According to the source, the Marquez camp knew Wednesday night that Mayweather would not make weight because Mayweather's team made overtures to Golden Boy Promotions in an effort to have Marquez agree to change weight on the bout agreements to be filed with the Nevada State Athletic Commission.
This is pretty much exactly what this fight did not need. A lot of the casual public seems to have bought into the idea that Marquez has a good shot at upsetting Mayweather (a poll at HBO.com, however skewed, has 56% of voters saying that Marquez will pull the upset), but the boxing diehards and the media still see Mayweather as a massive favorite, in part due to a size advantage. This is just rotten press to have one day before a fight that was already being questioned as a $50 pay-per-view event by a lot of people.
What matters here is more than the weight, it's the fact that the fight now has the stink of being a dishonest venture from the Mayweather side. To fight the smaller Marquez, who has never fought over the lightweight limit of 135 pounds before, the former welterweight champion Mayweather agreed to boil a few pounds off of his most recent fighting weight of 147 pounds. 144 was closer to his preferred weight than Marquez's anyway, but Floyd having to cut a few pounds could have been a factor if he had struggled with the weight.
Obviously, he did struggle with it, and had he been forced to hit a sauna and sweat off those two pounds today, it might well have adversely affected him tomorrow. No way could Floyd have afforded to let the fight get canceled. Obviously Marquez wants the money, too, but Floyd desperately needs his $10 million guarantee. He's being hounded by the IRS for $6.1 million (and they're taking $5 million tomorrow) and was recently sued by JP Morgan Chase Bank for the remaining balance of a car he never paid for (about $167K).
The situation hurts the fight, and it throws a wrench right at the face of Mayweather's reputation. Why did he never file his paperwork with Nevada? Athletic Commission official Keith Kizer said he was very unhappy with Mayweather's tardiness on the issue. Marquez's contract was already filed, with the agreed-upon 144 pounds in the language. Floyd got his in just before the weigh-in today.
Why did he wait? Why did he insist that the weight not be discussed by anyone officially associated with the event?
My guess is he either seriously doubted his ability to make 144 pounds, or he never intended on doing so in the first place. It's nice that Marquez will be getting the money for Floyd's foul, but his best chance to beat Mayweather went out the window when Floyd simply decided that paying for two more pounds was easier for him than burning off that weight. A drained Floyd could have been very vulnerable. Now, Mayweather's pocket book might be a little lighter than it would have been, but he'll have every physical advantage, just as criticized by those that have been naysaying this matchup from the word "go."
Mayweather kept it quiet for a reason. He didn't file the contract for a reason. And it stinks in every way.