The news dropped late Sunday and Monday the water coolers, virtual and tangible, saw clusters of fight fans chattering about the latest chess move by “Money” Mayweather.
Most, seemingly, see this as about, zero surprise, Floyd’s main driver, money.
We collected takes from boxing journos, analysts and openers, asking them to assess the Floyd-fighting-for-Rizin news drop. Enjoy, and then leave your own hot take in comments section.
Ron Borges weighed in: “Typical example of Floyd’s greatest skill. He is a great boxer but a better matchmaker. He is taking on a 20-year-old kickboxer who you can bet won’t be allowed to use his feet! That’s because Floyd brings the money so he can dictate the terms. Opens Asian market up for his other boxers and gets him a pretty big payday I would imagine. And who wouldn’t want to be in a fight on New Year’s Eve? A lot of people will do it for free. He’ll get many yen to get in a pillow fight. Genius! What’s interesting is can he con the public again? Considering what Trump is getting away with don’t bet against Money!”
Tom Penney had his say. “I get it, I really do. There’s money to be made and I will never stand in the way of people making money. That said, this all sort of feels like a perversion of combat sports. Does anyone think that Floyd is really going to fight one of the brightest kickboxing stars in the world on his terms? Either the fix is in, or it’s going to be some ‘4 oz. gloves, no kicking’ nonsense.”
The Wall Street Journal’s Don Steinberg offered us a comparison in character. “Jeesh. Mayweather is like Trump. He’s got certain fans he will never alienate, and everyone else would pay a fortune in hopes of watching somebody kick his ass. If Manny or McGregor can’t do it, bring in an evil clown or a zombie.”
“I see this strictly as a business move that coincidentally comes after the PBC deal to Fox,” said Abe Gonzalez. “This may be a way to expand their audience and maybe even broker some cross licensing deals. Maybe Fox is throwing their hat in the streaming business and this is the beginning of a much bigger partnership. Nothing will surprise me these days. This could also be part of a deal where RIZIN gets involved in the promotion between him and Pacman. This fight is much more than what’s on the surface and has many layers to it. In the end, Floyd will win and the only question that will remain will be, what’s next?”
John Gatling isn’t enthused. At. All. “This is insulting, frankly. Floyd Mayweather went beyond ‘Money’ and started calling himself ‘TBE.’ We now know that means ‘The Biggest Embarrassment.’ Brags about his otherworldly conditioning at 40-plus and takes ridiculously insecure selfies to prove It, but won’t dare pull a B-Hop and challenge the best of the best at the same age. Is already a compulsive liar about retirement and doesn’t have the gumption to just go away; or maybe the ‘bosses’ he swears he doesn’t have are making him do this. Whatever the case, ‘Da Hood’ ain’t feelin’ this shit and Madison Avenue might be in for a surprise if they don’t pull this card. He’s undefeated damaged goods and this wreaks of contrived Ringling Brothers.”
Kelsey McCarson knows what he’s doing for (Japanese) New Year’s Eve. “I love it. Mayweather is great at three things: boxing, promoting himself and making money. He’s truly TBE at drawing interest to his fights and he’s certainly doing that here with an outside-the-box promotion before taking on Pacquiao for the second time,” said the Texas-based writer.
David Phillips, will you watch? “I would prefer he wrestle a bear, race a horse, or do a rap battle with Kanye. Hard fucking pass.”
Hey Jim Lampley, what is your take on this Mayweather fight? “None,” said the Hall of Famer fight caller.
And living legend and ultra-sage Larry Merchant, what does he think about Mayweather versus this kickboxer? “Robinson beats both of them. And he’s been dead for 30 years,” Merchant piped in.
Now, you have your say, in the comments section.