PUNCH­ING THE CLOCK

May­weather says af­ter years of buildup, the time is right for him to square off against Pac­quiao. All the wait­ing will pay off.

Los Angeles Times - - SPORTS - By Lance Pug­mire

LAS VE­GAS — Floyd May­weather Jr.’s crafty, well-plot­ted style in the boxing ring car­ried over to his de­ci­sion of choos­ing when to fight Manny Pac­quiao too, he said.

At his gym Tues­day, on me­dia day for a May 2 fight that is ex­pected to de­stroy pay-per-view and live-gate records, May­weather (47-0, 26 knock­outs) de­tailed why he fi­nally agreed to fight the record eight-di­vi­sion cham­pion from the Philip­pines.

“Ev­ery­thing in life is about tim­ing,” May­weather said. “I don’t re­gret any­thing. The time is now.

“Be­fore, I don’t think this fight was as big as this. With me go­ing out there get­ting big­ger and big­ger, not just in boxing, but out­side the sport, and him step­ping out­side boxing and con­tin­u­ing to grow out­side the sport, the names are much big­ger now than they were be­fore.

“You can’t rush ev­ery­thing in life. Cer­tain things aren’t meant to be [rushed].”

May­weather, 38, and Pac­quiao, 36, first be­gan fight ne­go­ti­a­tions more than five years ago, but a se­ries of dis­agree­ments and May­weather’s gen­eral apathy kept boxing’s su­per-fight on pause.

In the in­terim, May­weather in 2013 signed a six-fight deal with Show­time/CBS that has given him four purses in ex­cess of $30 mil­lion, in­clud­ing record sales for his Septem­ber 2013, victory over Mex­ico’s Saul “Canelo” Al­varez.

Forbes said May­weather earned $105 mil­lion last year, be­com­ing the sec­ond ath­lete af­ter Tiger Woods to reach $100 mil­lion in a year.

for the su­per-fight took a dark turn when Pac­quiao was knocked out by Juan Manuel Mar­quez in 2012, but he has ral­lied with three con­vinc­ing vic­to­ries, knock­ing down pre­vi­ously un­beaten Chris Al­gieri six times in a Novem­ber victory by de­ci­sion.

“I didn’t re­ally say any­thing [af­ter the Mar­quez loss], I just thought hope­fully he’d be able to bounce back,” May­weather said of Pac­quiao. “And he bounced back. It was the right thing for the sport of boxing and for him­self.”

May­weather has pre­vi­ously taken ver­bal shots at Pac­quiao for re­main­ing with May­weather’s for­mer pro­moter, Bob Arum of Top Rank Inc., but de­clined to do so Tues­day.

He said he told his clos­est ad­vi­sors nearly a decade ago, when he de­cided to part ways with Arum, that he’d be the first fighter to make $100 mil­lion for a bout.

For this bout, it’s be­lieved May­weather, who’ll earn a 60% purse split to Pac­quiao’s 40%, could earn nearly $200 mil­lion.

“I al­ways knew if I made the right moves … even­tu­ally I’d get to the next level,” May­weather said.

For this fight, May­weather said he has taken to the most ba­sic of train­ing tech niques, in­clud­ing chop­ping wood, while also in­cor­po­rat­ing swim­ming work­outs.

“[There’s] more ex­cite­ment, [but] it’s been smooth and com­fort­able and I’m happy with my per­for­mance,” May­weather said.

May­weather’s fa­ther/ trainer, Floyd May­weather Sr., said his son’s in­tel­li­gence will prove too much for Pac­quiao.

“It’s not go­ing to be the [toss-up] fight that peo­ple think it’s go­ing to be,” May­weather Sr. said. “The May­weath­ers are like this: When we see what a guy’s do­ing, and see him keep do­ing it, we know what to do.”

Pac­quiao, said May­weather Jr., is “a very, very reck­less fighter,” leav­ing him­self open to punches.

May­weather also cracked jokes about Pac­quiao’s height dis­ad­van­tage — “he wears lifts in his shoes” — and raised his eye­brows and flashed a smile when some­one took note of his reach ad­van­tage.

“My ca­reer wouldn’t have lasted this long if I had been a reck­less fighter like that,” May­weather said of Pac­quiao. “A guy can land a good shot, but one thing about Floyd May­weather: I can make ad­just­ments.

“Al­ways.”

Pho­to­graphs by Wally Skalij Los An­ge­les Times

THE NICK­NAME “MONEY” cer­tainly fits un­beaten Floyd May­weather Jr., who earned more than $100 mil­lion last year and fig­ures to make close to $200 mil­lion for his May 2 bout against Manny Pac­quiao in Las Ve­gas.

MAY­WEATHER, WHO WORKED out in front of a big crowd Tues­day, said he was glad Pac­quiao bounced back from a knock­out loss to Juan Manuel Mar­quez.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.