Super fights and Mega Fights

 Through out the his-story of boxing, and in the civilization of men, there has always been the need and desire to test ones worth against a worthy opponent. In boxing there has always been a clamour to settle who the best fighter is. Even across generations, the debate is constant.  Recently two such “fighters of their generation” were supposed to square off against each other for the imaginary title of pound for pound champion. Both Floyd Mayweather- a prodigy from a strong boxing linage and Manny Pacquiao – a rags to riches story and national hero in the Philippines, where to fight each other to see who is top dog of their generation.

Check out these links for some synapses:

HBO’s bio of Floyd Mayweather

HBO’s History of Manny Pacquiao

This is where I see a problem with Anti African sentimentality in America Inc. and how is insinuates itself into every orifices of commoners and “ignant” peoples. Manny Pacquiao has been the darling of people inside and outside of the Philippines. As his biography indicates he is no joke! Up until the contract negotiations for the proposed fight with Mayweather, few people spoke ill of him. The few that did, questioned his meteoric rise through seven weight classes knocking out people bigger than him and walking through punches of people supposedly stronger and bigger than him. The whisper of performance enhancers was on the lips of many but just not news worthy for a media driven culture that loves the underdog, rags to riches story; especially if he is a non African American in a sport dominated by Africans. Check the hysteria around the Kletchko brothers, Mathew Hatton (when he was undefeated) Oscar Dela Hoya and Kelly Pavilik to name a few.

Floyd Mayweather Sr. had the audacity to bring the whispering out in the open, by voicing his belief that no one can rise through the ranks like Manny has done, leaving broken bodies and dreams in his devastating wake with out the help of “something”. The Mayweather clan’s travails has been well documented and in fact is the typical boxers life times two (Rodger Mayweather) and is severely augmented by the fact that these men and Floyd Jr. have committed the cardinal sin of not being deferential to the gang bangers that control the money in boxing. Groups like HBO, the Nevada Boxing Commission, the varied sanctioning boards, and the numerous promoters, including Golden Boy and Top Rank.

So we have on one side Manny Pacquiao, hero of the moment and in his corner trainer Freddy Roach the so called best trainer, who learned all he would ever know from an African Eddie Futch whose accomplishment he will never match. In Pacquiao’s corner lurks the ever present slime ball Bob Arum. I call him a slime ball because he is a boxing promoter, so he starts the debate  half a block behind, but also because of the following his-story of Arum:

Controversiesof Bob Arum 

While working as a boxing promoter, Arum had been involved in many feuds and controversies.

In 1994, he was involved with John Daly for the High Noon in Hong Kong boxing event. The fights were called off at the last minute when Barry Hearn withdrew his fighters as no purses were forthcoming. John Daly blamed Arum when he said, “I’ve tried desperately to convince my partners to keep the faith. I offered them as much security as I could but it was not quite good enough. It seems I was ready to take the shots, but Mr Arum wasn’t.”

He has been involved in a forty year feud with Don King, who once called him a “rat fink” in 2000 for admitting during a federal trial that he bribed the International Boxing Federation president in order to gain a more favorable rating for one of his fighters.

He was penalized $125,000 by the Nevada State Athletic Commission in 1995 for a bribe to get one of his fights sanctioned.

In 2003, Arum complained about the judging in the Sept. 13 bout between Oscar De La Hoya and Sugar Shane Mosley and suggested there was a vendetta against him from a member of the Nevada State Commission that led to DeLa Hoya’s loss. Arum later apologized for the remark which commission chairman Luther Mack accepted.

On the first week of January 2004, FBI agents raided Arum’s Top Rank office in Las Vegas. Arum was on vacation when his office was raided, and the FBI originally declined to comment on the raid. The media reported that the FBI was investigating allegations that Top Rank was involved in fixing the rematch between de la Hoya and Shane Mosley, even though De La Hoya lost and Arum was De La Hoya’s promoter. The federal agency also announced that it was investigating some of Eric Esch‘s fights, as well as the Jorge PaezVerdell Smith fight. The investigation closed in the summer of 2006 with no charges being filed.

In 2007, Floyd Mayweather Jr., who Arum promoted from 1996-2006, accused him of both underpaying and undermarketing him while exploting his talents and manipulating officials.

In 2007, UFC president Dana White accused him of “sucking the life out of the sport (boxing) and not putting anything back in.” Amongst White’s criticisms were that Arum had created a weak undercard for the DeLa Hoya-Mayweather fight in 2007 saying Arum did not promote the show correctly. “He promoted that show completely the wrong way, because he worried about the money as opposed to trying to secure the future,” White said. “He should have stacked that card. He should have had Shane Mosley and Bernard Hopkins and (Marco Antonio) Barrera and Winky Wright on there and used it to show that boxing is back”. Arum responded by saying that MMA fighters need to examine the revenues being generated and ask why the UFC wasn’t paying the more.

Arum has been accused of being a racist by Robert Lee, the former president of the International Boxing Federation. Lee said of Arum “I pin the racism charge on him because he once told me: `We will let the Blacks and the Latinos fight in the ring and we will count the money on the outside’.”

Arum also filed a lawsuit HBO for overstepping its boundaries in the sport by becoming a defacto promoter while trying to intentionally eliminate him as a promoter. Arum complained that HBO dropped Floyd Mayweather Jr. from his exclusive deal after he insisted his fighter have a tougher bout than the network wanted. The suit was settled of court but Arum continued to criticize HBO by saying “Instead of working with promoters, like they have done in the past, they have become promoters themselves. They make the fights just like promoters and pay fighters,” Arum said. “It’s their money and they can do what they want, but Don King doesn’t have to go along with it and neither do I. King and I can get along without HBO or Showtime.”

In 2009, Arum defended Antonio Margarito when he lost his boxing license in the US state of California on charges of illegal handwraps [3], implied it was racially motivated and stated that Top Rank would not come back to the state of California until the issue was rectified

In late-2009, Arum called UFC fans “skinhead white guys watching people in the ring who are (sic) also look like skinhead white guys.” Bas Rutten accused him of racism for this remark

He also stated that MMA fighters are “guys rolling around like homosexuals on the ground.”  Earlier in the year, Arum described UFC President Dana White as “nuts” and “a little too much of a loose cannon” for White’s use of a gay slur in reference to an MMA reporter.

After failing to promote a Kelly Pavlik at Youngstown State University, Arum blamed the local college for the botched name and marketing job of the Pavlik Espino fight. Pavlik had continually ducked Paul Williams and lost local support. Arum however blamed the school who went out of their way to host the fight as the reason why, and took no responsibility for the botched marketing job. The Kelly Pavlik fight was the first fight with a world championship title on the line to fail to sell out in the Mahoning Valley.

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