The Train Daddy’s rolling out the station and ready to chug-a-lug-lug, down the tracks, baby! Let’s do this the Train Daddy way: nothing but real talk, my own opinions with nothing to hold them back. Let’s talk boxing!
It’s finally here: the pride of the Philippines, Manny Pacquiao, vs. the ignorant American punk who some say is racist, some say is sexist, and all say is arrogant—Floyd “Money” Mayweather. That’s right, I despise Mayweather. I apologize, lady liberty, I am not cheering for the punk American, as my heart lies with Pac-Man and the people of the Philippines. On May 2 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, the world will be watching a fight that is long overdue. Since 2009 this fight has been the most sought-after match in the world. Mayweather, undefeated at 47–0 with 26 KOs, and Pacquiao at 57–5–2 with 38 KOs, will soon take to the ring. The fight is expected to be the highest-grossing fight in the history of the sport and will reportedly bring in more than $500 million. The first ringside seats available are going for 87 grand apiece. Only about 16,000 people will be privileged enough to be inside the MGM to watch the bout live, but millions will pay the ridiculous pay-per-view price—nearly a hundred bucks for a high-def transmission—and enjoy it from the comforts of home.
This isn’t just another fight. It is a worldwide event that is more comparable to the Super Bowl or the World Cup than it is your typical boxing card. So, let’s break down the fighters, their personalities, their strengths and weaknesses and, in a media-crazy world, the dumb things said and posted by Floyd Mayweather throughout his so-far perfect career.
Ali vs. Frazier, Joe Louis vs. Schmeling, Dempsey vs. Firpo, Ali vs. Foreman, Tyson vs. Holyfield, Sugar Ray vs. The Hitman Hearns, Mickey Ward vs. Gatti. Even if boxing no longer matters the way it once did, a major contest is still a compelling spectacle for millions of people. These are many past bouts that have been met with eager anticipation, and Mayweather vs. Pacquiao is certainly going to have a place amongst the ranks. Let’s break down the fighters before I have fun and verbally abuse Floyd Money. The champ has good power, but doesn’t box in a way that lets it shine. His approach is to mitigate risk; he is defense as Pacquiao is offense. Floyd typically doesn’t punch aggressively enough to regularly knock out opponents. He is dependent on countering opponents to submission, or a decision loss. It isn’t a fluke that Floyd has been so successful, remains undefeated and is considered the best pound for pound. He is a genius boxer.
On the other hand, defense is boring for the spectators and, luckily, we have Pacquiao, who is a more powerful puncher than Floyd and comes with unworldly speed. He devastates, and hits hard and often. Pacquiao is a volume puncher, and this has made him one of the best offensive fighters of all time. Pacquiao is underrated as a defender, but no boxer in the world stands equal with Floyd as a defender; he is the best in the business. Who wins, and how do they win? Mayweather will need to adjust to Pacquiao’s speed and power. Manny comes out the gate like a bull with a force that always dumbfounds his opponents. Speed and power will help Pac-Man score early in the match.
Mayweather’s game plan is what it always has been, and remember that plan has him at 47–0. Floyd will box and move, box and move, he cannot trade punches with Manny. I expect a slobber-knocker of a match-up, but Manny has more heart. I believe Floyd has been smartly avoiding this bout for years, and he can’t run from it anymore. The world wants it, and now his perfect record may be in jeopardy. I have Manny in a decision win, though it will take all the juice he can muster.
So, we have two huge personalities: Pacquiao, who enjoyed his celebrity persona earlier in his career with women and alcohol, has since found his faith in God, embracing Christianity openly. Then we have Floyd Money Mayweather, who (just to review) is called sexist by some, racist by others and arrogant by all. The man poses for photos with millions of his dollars within reach, while Manny is more concerned with personal projects such as building homes and churches for the poor people of the Philippines. You may say, “Train Daddy, why do you despise Floyd so much?” He is ignorant and arrogant, and it’s hard to be both. Floyd states that the average boxing fan hates him because he is black and wealthy. No, no, Floyd, this is why: you flap your lips too much without thinking, or maybe caring, about the controversy it causes.
When talking about Manny years ago, referring to him as a yellow chump and a midget (an obvious stereotype on Asians), he stated, “I am going to make that mother fudger make me a shrimp roll and cook me some rice, then will chop his ass up and cook him with some cats and dogs.” He also added the word faggot in there multiple times. I guess when you have a world-class private chef at your beck and call, it’s easy to make fun of third-world countries, right, Floyd? He also had choice words for NBA player Jeremy Lin. “Lin is a good player but all the hype is because he is Asian. Black players do what he does every night and don’t get the same praise.” Let me think . . . Lebron, Kobe, Durant, Paul, Curry, Parker, Howard . . . that is the top of the list in the NBA these days, all black and all praised quite well. Floyd, you remember Michael Jordan?
Let’s move on to the next Floyd comment. When asked about the sport of Mixed Martial Arts, Floyd stated “It is a sport for beer drinkers, boxing is for everyone, and you can’t take my shoes off, my shirt off and throw me in a cage.” Then he went on to claim that the UFC was created to give white people a chance to fight. The media never said a word about it, or covered it, and the UFC fighters and Dana White were obviously upset. I imagine if a white UFC fighter said boxing was created to give black people a chance to fight, people would be rioting in the streets.
Most people who know Floyd Money . . . well, you know about his father, Floyd Senior, and their not-so-healthy relationship. His father was a prominent fighter in his day, and also an off-and-on trainer for his son. In a YouTube video that surfaced of the two in the gym yelling and screaming, the younger Mayweather had choice words for his dad. “You couldn’t fight worth a sh*t, you wasn’t nothing, you weren’t sh*t as a fighter, get out of my gym, faggot!” Well, that wasn’t a very kindly thing to say to Daddy.
Then, of course, he upset some women in another public rant. “How a female dresses is her advertisement . . . if a female shows half her body, she’s asking to be disrespected. If she dresses classy, expect to be treated like a lady. How you are addressed lies with your attire. Sexy is a spirit, not an outfit.” Many women groups claimed he was trying to justify sexual harassment and assault of women. I disagree with about everything he says, but there is some truth to that statement—obviously, appearance creates reaction. If a women has a large rack hanging out, well, don’t expect men not to look and gawk. It blows my mind when a woman flaunts the goods and then gives the evil eye when there is a wandering eye. The math doesn’t add up in that equation. So, let’s recap. Floyd Mayweather has, over the years, insulted women, gays, Asians, white and black MMA fighters, his daddy and the integrity of his character. He is without a doubt a solid role model.
If you have seen any of Pacquiao’s recent interviews, he might remind you of former Heisman quarterback Tim Tebow. In all of his interviews he gives thanks to God, and says it is all in His glory and nothing else is above that. Pacquiao wasn’t always so righteous; he once was an all-night corn dog. He would take pleasures whenever it suited him, and ignored advice to respect his wedding vows, so what changed? Well, Manny states that God came to him in a dream and spoke directly to his soul. He claims he heard the voice of God and saw two angels, and claims it all took place in a beautiful forest amid flowers. “When I heard the voice of God I felt like I died. I was in the middle of the forest and I was kneeling and praying with my face in the ground and then I saw a light. A very white light and I heard the voice.” Maybe truth? Maybe acid? Maybe too many jabs to the brain, who knows? He also claims God showed him the end of times. While I am a firm believer in my faith, I find those sorts of events somewhat hard to swallow, but hey, like I said, who knows? I do know this to be true: Manny profoundly changed his ways and character, living for faith, family and friends instead of fame, women and alcohol. After Mayweather made personal attacks on Pacquiao’s character, Manny stated he pities Mayweather. “I am not affected by it. I pity him and I pray that someday he would change his ways. He should fear God. For what is a man profited if he shall gain the whole world and lose his soul?” That’s it right there in a nutshell. It’s a more detailed way of saying there is more to life than riches and pleasure, and maybe Mayweather will never understand that. But hey, Manny is praying for him, so you never know.
So that’s it, on May 2 we take to the ring. Like I said, I have Manny winning in a decision, but never count out the undefeated prize fighter. He is the favorite, after all, and he does have Justin Bieber in his corner. I decided to do this article after years of watching both fighters’ antics and their progression over time, and the years of public desire for a fight. I guess I respect Manny more as a man and I see the ignorant child in Floyd. I am just rooting for the better man. The Train is out the station, ’til next time: Choo choo!