On the eve of Mayweather-Maidana I became entranced by Glovegate. I watched the available youtubes of the glove fittings many times, I was following multiple twitter feeds of boxing insiders, and I even researched various state athletic regulations on glove approvals and glove fitting requirements.
My take at the time was that Maidana was well within his rights to use his preferred gloves – not the custom made Argentina blue gloves but the same style of Everlasts, which were approved by Nevada. From all that I gathered, I believed Floyd would have been in breach of contract if Maidana could not wear his preferred and approved gloves. Apparently, Floyd and his team felt the same as it just came to light that Maidana was paid $1.5 million to not wear those gloves. Wowzer!
I’m glad this has come to light, as I wondered about how they resolved the issue, and then, post-fight, promptly forgot about it.
First I want to review some theories about Glovegate at the time and then state what I think the payoff tells us now. Here are the theories that I remember:
- Floyd is scared.
- Floyd isn’t so much scared as just expressing a twinge of insecurity.
- Floyd is playing mind games.
- Floyd is flexing A-side muscle because he can.
- Floyd is drumming up publicity for a PPV event that didn’t seem to get much mojo behind it even during fight week.
- Floyd feels Maidana tried to pull a fast one with the custom gloves and this was one way to get even with Team Maidana.
- Floyd just being Floyd. Just like boxing, it is what it is.
At the time of Glovegate I felt mostly that Floyd was just flexing his A-side muscle with a possibility that it was mixed in with a slight bit of insecurity. I was buying into some pre-fight hype that Maidana had a chance because he didn’t show any respect toward Floyd (which turned out to be somewhat true) and as a result he may have gotten into Floyd’s mind.
Now, knowing that Floyd paid Maidana a boat load of moolah to make it happen, I feel a little different. I think at the time Floyd was just trying to play mind games and use his A-side to get what he wanted. The $1.5 million has less to do with insecurity and more to do with avoiding humiliation. Floyd made his stand and when Team Maidana refused, Floyd could either double down or give in. As Floyd is not the giving in type TMT made a public stance that the fight was off. I assume that once TMT realized they didn’t have a legal foot to stand on in forcing Maidana to wear different gloves they used money to save face.
I don’t think much of Floyd as a person but I do think he believes in his boxing skills. I feel that if he did have a moment of insecurity or doubt during the glove fitting and reacted as he did, he would have been able to calm down a bit and regain his composure during the interval that followed. He would have been able to erase that insecurity or doubt and then would have refused to pay Maidana off. Paying Miadan off would validate to himself that he had doubt and I’m not sure Floyd is capable of that sort of validation or self-reflection. As see it, the more time that passed more it became about face saving than anything else.
I’d like to know what everyone else thinks about the $1.5 million payoff to Maidana to wear different gloves.