Nobody expected “The Fight of the Century” to live up to the hype for a multitude of reasons. Many rightfully feared that Mayweather would fight the same way that he had in each of his previous 47 fights. Others feared that the judges would side with Mayweather in any close fight. But while the fight took on a cartoonish theme of a clear cut good vs. bad, the blame for the overall wackness of the fight sits squarely on the shoulders of the Pacquaio camp, who for their part of the promotion, produced an injured fighter.
The first and most obvious culprits are Manny and his trainer Freddie Roach. In all honesty, attacking them for their part is like picking the low hanging fruit. It’s not wrong. They lied on the Nevada Athletic Commissions questionnaire. They were specifically asked if Manny was suffering from a shoulder injury, and despite a recently torn rotator cuff, the box marked “no” was checked. This is inexcusable, he lied. Why you would lie on a document that clarifies you are answering under the penalty of perjury is also a fair question. Look, we understand gamesmanship, we get it; the more your opponent knows, the more he can use against you. But if Manny wanted to get any type of treatment for the injury, he would have had to be clear that the injury actually existed. Furthermore, this isn’t any injury where now your opponent knows where to hit you, this injury limits your ability to throw punches, your opponent is gonna figure out whats wrong with you pretty quick. Which brings us to the bigger question, should Manny have actually been in the ring on May 2nd?
The fight was about 5 years too late anyways. If Manny had surgery the week after he injured it in camp, who knows, maybe the fight only gets put off by about 6 months. Would that really be that bad? But, Bob Arum, Manny’s promoter was blinded by money; money that would have been there no matter when the fight happened. The repeat briber made his true motives clear when he seemingly bragged about Manny’s injury and bravery in the immediate post fight press conference. The problem is, nobody was paying to see an injured Manny’s courage, not only did we want to see a healthy Pacman, thats what we were told we were paying for. Maybe the record profits would have still been there if we knew Manny was hurt, but its doubtful and thats why Bob did what he did. Reports are that the Pacman camp sent their sparring partners home weeks early. This wasn’t a fair fight, but this time, a Mayweather opponent did it to himself. Bob is known as a too savvy business man, but what he did here was not just dishonest, it was a bad business move, and it seals the fate of boxing. It’s because of people like Bob Arum that boxing can’t compete with the UFC, its not the rules. Where Top Rank and Mayweather Promotions could have produced a crazy fight card including last weekends Canelo fight, we instead were treated to nothing but an injured prize fighter against a fight avoider. In the aftermath of the fight we’ve labeled as the last boxing match to ever matter, there will be some lawsuits, I say Bob Arum should lose everything. You had one job.