We know nothing
On Friday evening, the Twitterverse and every other social media platform was sent into a tizzy – yes, a tizzy – as TMZ.com, the paragon of journalism, reported that the long-awaited showdown between Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao was on as Mayweather had agreed to terms and signed off on the fight.
In their words, it was “a done deal.”
Alas, it wasn’t to be as their report was false (and somewhere out there, a very much alive and breathing Lil’ Wayne was laughing hysterically at TMZ); they later posted an amended report stating the two sides had agreed to such issues as the date (May 2) and venue (so it wasn’t Abu Dhabi?!), which is like reporting “breaking news” that Christmas would be on Dec. 25.
In other words, it’s anything but “done.”
What has this world come to when you can’t trust TMZ?!
Sources say there are still significant issues to be worked out and on Saturday, Mayweather made it quite clear on Shots that this fight was not consummated, using the hashtag #FightNotMadeYet. He posted a photo of himself relaxing rather comfortably on a hammock in Jamaica – where they presumably don’t have “fake weed.”
It was believed that this fight, which, for five long interminable years hasn’t come to fruition, was fast-tracked as Floyd and Manny finally met this past week in Miami. Now, post-LeBron, a Heat-Bucks game in late January is usually as innocuous an event as you’ll ever come across but on this night, as they sat across from each other courtside, it soon became the most talked about happening in sports and perhaps even pop culture. At halftime, they met face-to-face and swapped numbers (no word if they became Facebook friends or not) and later that night, they met at Pacquiao’s hotel where they supposedly ironed out more details.
Many believed this had to be a premeditated stroke of marketing genius, the two would-be combatants hooking up and making waves on an otherwise slow news day. This just had to be planned as they powwowed in public and then privately. Of course, never mind that Pacquiao was in town for Miss Universe and his flight back to the West Coast was delayed and Mayweather just happens to own a property in Miami and spends a lot of time around South Beach. They both coincidentally happen to like basketball a great deal.
This crossing of paths was supposed to be precursor to a huge Super Bowl announcement really that was unlikely as Marshawn Lynch appearing on “Face the Nation.”
Who knows if this fight will ever become reality? Honestly, I really don’t know. After going through this saga for five long years, I’ve been conditioned to look at this thing cynically and there are certain hurdles that can’t be overcome – such as the animus that Mayweather has toward Bob Arum – and that this latest go-round is a lot like the other. As a reporter, my job is to cover this because there are still a lot of fans who still care about this match-up. My colleague and friend, Doug Fischer has basically thrown his arms up in the air and tried to write/talk about this particular subject as little as possible. He has dubbed this whole saga “The Neverending Story.” I don’t blame him one bit. Besides, that’s what Doug has Lem Satterfield for at RingTV.com.
Covering the fight game should be about, well…the actual fights that happen.
Speaking of which, can I come clean here? Like my other fellow boxing scribes, I really don’t know all that much about this whole situation. Yeah, I said it – that said, kudos to Lance Pugmire of the L.A. Times, who really has been on top of this more than any of us by a country mile – and the reality is we all basically talk to the same people who will give us different morsels of (mis)information when they’re damned good and ready.
But you wanna know the harsh truth? Our sources (and you can guess who they are, depending on the media outlet) sometimes don’t know all that much either. Yeah, we are all basically like Sgt. Schultz of “Hogan’s Heroes” (now, for the record, while I just recently celebrated a birthday over the weekend, I’m not that old. I watched some reruns growing up).
We know nahthing!
Yeah, there, I said it. That’s the truth. We are basically playing an educated guessing game and are at the whims of those involved. And quite frankly, another reason why we waste our time talking about this overwrought subject is that anytime the combination of Mayweather-Pacquiao is on a headline, it will draw more hits than, say, Lucas Matthysse-Ruslan Provodnikov (now, there’s a battle I’m looking forward to).
Yeah, news flash: We’re in the business of hits, clicks and page views. And the very inconvenient truth is what we don’t want to incessantly write about and holds so much importance to the very business we cover is a fight that might never come to be and is a very indictment on the fractured nature of this industry.
Here’s the real truth: Whether Mayweather-Pacquiao ever happens or not, we can’t really tell you beforehand with any real certainty. But if it ever does come to a point in which both Floyd and Manny have put their names on the dotted line – and speaking of which, is there actually a contract and just what terms were included? – it won’t be any of us in the media that break the news. It will be Mayweather himself announcing it on his Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Shots, Google Plus, Friendster and MySpace accounts.
But I know some of you still want to ask me this: Will this fight happen on May 2?
C’mon, like I know anything…
I’m writing this several hours before the Super Bowl and I could end up looking real foolish here if this fight is actually announced during the big game. But perhaps I’m in the minority but wouldn’t announcing Mayweather-Pacquiao at this juncture actually be overshadowed by, y’know…the Super Bowl?
Just my opinion but the Super Bowl is the single biggest sporting we have in the States by far and for at least another day or two later, it will dominate the sports news cycle like it always does. For this fight to truly resonate, it has to be covered by the general sports media…that will still be talking about the aftermath and ramifications of the game, regardless of who wins it.
Regardless, when – and if – this announcement is ever made, the fight will be covered ad nauseum. But the Bowl would probably the rare happening that would eclipse it.
Still no announced venue for the March 13 Spike TV card featuring Andre Berto-Josesito Lopez. StubHub Center was originally announced by some outlets, then the Galen Center at USC (which I’m told has a scheduling conflict due to a volleyball tournament) and now the Citizens Business Bank Arena in Ontario is being discussed…Tony Luis just flat-out swarmed Karl Dargan on “Friday Night Fights”…Speaking of which, why was Jeff Lacy on that broadcast? He is beyond shot; shame on anyone who had a hand in that…And yeah, I found it ironic that the ESPN2 broadcast crew was concerned now about the state of Jermain Taylor’s health…So did Mikkel Kessler retire?…Has “Scandal” jumped the shark? That last episode was bad…I can’t lie; “Empire” is thoroughly enjoyable…I can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and I tweet (a lot) at http://twitter.com/steveucnlive. I also share photos of stuff at http://instagram.com/steveucnlive and can also be found at www.tsu.co/steveucnlive.