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TGS Blog Posts

The Official That's Game! Sports Blog

Filtering by Tag: boxing


Scripted Visions Publishing Group

- Separating the Athlete from the Person- 

By Delano Burnett

It seems like there is a lot of hating going on when it comes to Floyd “Money” Mayweather.  So many people out here spewing pure HATE in the champ’s direction; from your average fans via social media to the media pundits on both TV and radio. The theme is a common one: “Everybody Hates Floyd.” 

Ok, so the fight versus Pacman didn’t provide the action people wanted; but, Mayweather once again showed why he’s the best Boxer in the game today. Hate him or love him, he is the best pure Boxer of this generation hands down. When it comes to people hating on Floyd Mayweather as a person, there are things people need to understand about athletes in general.  
Let’s talk about team sports for a second. Throughout the history of sports there have been a slew of athletes who, on a personal level, weren’t regarded as the best “people”. Everyone from Kobe Bryant, to Lawrence Taylor, to Pete Rose, and list goes on…were not viewed as the best “people” from a moral or character point-of-view. However, they were the best at their respective athletic professions. When it comes to succeeding in sports at a high level, you have to possess a certain confidence and even arrogance that will sometimes bleed over into your day to day interaction with people.

To this day my friends and I still argue among ourselves about whose better at what sport, who can bench the most, etc.  It’s that arrogance, that competitive fire that many people will easily mistake as you being an “a-hole” or a bad person. So if my friends and I are doing this at our minor level of competitive sports, think about a pro athlete who has made it to the pinnacle of their craft. The arrogance of that particular athlete is going to be off the charts! As fans, we have to do a better job of separating the athlete and the person. 

Now think about boxers. As a boxer, you are totally dependent on yourself in that ring, there are no teammates, no real coaches (outside of your trainer and cut-man).  You are literally on your own in the ring going against an opponent who is trying to knock your head clean off.  To be a boxer, you have to be wired a little differently than the average person.  Think about the fights outside of the ring that most boxers probably endured before they even thought about becoming a boxer.  If you grew up fighting and you end up being really good at what you do, there’s going to be an arrogance about you that’s probably abnormal. The thing is, you have to be that way to survive in a sport as brutal as boxing.  

Boxing has produced some very dislikable people, e.g. Sonny Liston, Mike Tyson, George Forman (pre-his “Forman Grill” days) and Bernard Hopkins (pre- his “getting older” days lol). Now, as far as Mayweather’s public image, of course he has brought some of this on himself via his carefully orchestrated marketing persona “Money” as well as his documented run-ins with the law. With public outcry about domestic violence at an all-time high, Mayweather’s past has been brought back into play.  He’s been charged four times with domestic violence, having been convicted and sentenced to serve jail-time once as a result. Of course this is going to bring a lot of deserved hate in his direction, especially from women, which is to be expected.

Also, Mayweather flaunts his wealth any chance he gets and doing this with a lot of Americans suffering through unemployment, is not going to be viewed as a positive in the eyes of the American public. Again, this is understandable. That being said, fans still have to understand the separation between the entertainer and the person when looking at athletes, particularly boxers. They are in a sport where they have to depend on promoters to get the word out about them and these promoters, for the most part, are taking their fair share of the Boxer’s purse. It was reported by the Mayweather camp that Manny Pacquiao received around $30 million dollars of the $80 million he made the night of the fight. This is where the genius of the Mayweather camp comes into play. Promoting his own fights not only ensures he receives the majority of the total purse, but he also takes home the lion’s share of his winnings. 

In sports, especially combat sports, it helps sell the product if you have a “good guy versus bad guy” scenario. Obviously, Mayweather adopted the role of a bad guy and financially he’s proven to be incredibly successful. No matter how much people complain about his fights being boring, millions of fans are still tuning into watch. He’s found a formula that has helped him become the highest paid athlete across ALL sports. In spite of all the criticism about Mayweather’s upcoming fight against Andre Berto, when these two step into the ring on Saturday night, people across the world will tune in to see if Mayweather can achieve that magical 49-0 record. 

At the end of the day, Mayweather is just doing what a boxer does in terms of playing the villain in a sport that almost requires you to be a little crazy. In fact, he’s created a masterful blueprint for other fighters to follow. Instead of hating him for his “Money” persona, we all should take a minute to ponder the following: are we watching Mayweather because we are fans of the sport of boxing or do we just want to see him lose? 


Scripted Visions Publishing Group

"Pre-fight Breakdown of the Biggest Fight of Our Generation!"

By Delano Burnett

So… at long last...we have the highly anticipated “Super Fight” that boxing purists and casual fans alike have been waiting almost six years to see. Tonight, Floyd “Money” Mayweather and Manny “Pacman” Pacquiao will step into the ring and we can finally end the debate on who would win a head to head matchup, who is the better fighter and ultimately, who is current the pound for pound King of the Sweet Science. 

I'm a Mayweather fan and I think he's arguably the best pure boxer ever, which is saying a lot when you compare him to some of the all-time greats. But, I have to admit, I’m nervous for Floyd in this fight.  Anyone who doesn't think this will be a great fight to watch hasn't observed Manny’s fighting style throughout his entire career.  He's always been an aggressive fighter that really doesn't care much about defense and wants to mix it up regardless of who he is fighting.  His style of boxing is going to force Floyd to throw more punches then he's used to throwing in a fight.  

So here are my keys to the fight:

The way I'm judging this fight is by comparing two fighters that both Mayweather and Pacquiao have previously faced and, stylistically speaking, offered a challenge similar to what Floyd and Manny will face in each other tonight.  In my opinion, the fighter most similar to Mayweather that Pac has fought is Juan Manuel Marquez and the fighter most similar to Pac that Mayweather has fought is Sugar Shane Mosley.  

Floyd can be a slow-starter and in the Mosley fight he paid for it the most. Sugar had great punching power and he almost knocked him out in those early rounds.

For Manny to win this fight he's going to have to take advantage of Floyd in the early rounds, which is something that he is great at doing.  

Skilled counter-punchers have always caused problems for Pacquiao, so it’s easy to see why Marquez gave him so much trouble during their four battles. In fact, the case can be made that Marquez won most of those fights. Manny’s known problems with counterpunching can play perfectly into Floyd’s strategy because, after all, what is Mayweather? He’s the best counter puncher of all time!  Plus, Mayweather is great at the art of "hit and don't get hit”; so the shots that Marquez usually takes in a fight, Mayweather typically doesn't.  I can see Money knocking out Pac in this fight because his aggressiveness could work to Mayweather's advantage.  

Because of that last fact I pointed out you would think this should be an easy win for Mayweather.  The thing that worries me about this fight is: what took Floyd so long to make it happen in the first place?  Now of course I know all about the long history between him and Bob Arum and I wouldn't want to negotiate anything with him either; but there's no way, if I'm Mayweather, I would've let this linger as long as it did.  If I'm a boxer, I want to fight the best out there no matter how it has to get done. This was always going to be a big money fight and I don’t think five years passing has made much of a difference.  Thankfully both of these boxers aren't washed up, so this should still be a good fight.  It makes me wonder though, could Mayweather have been scared of this fight?  With all the of talk about Pac being on steroids and knowing that he was beating his opponents up, could that have been a factor in Mayweather not really wanting this fight?  A lot of sports pundits have pointed this out and I would think that a boxer doesn't have that type of fear, but it does make you wonder why he didn't make this fight sooner.  

Back to the fight, so I'm thinking this is how it's going to play out.  If Pac wins this fight I think it will be by a knockout and the fight won't go past six rounds. He will have to jump on Floyd early and I think that will be his game plan.  If Mayweather wins this fight it can either be by an early knockout or it can go the distance. You know, for all of his accolades, the thing I don't think Floyd gets enough credit for is his chin. In that Mosely fight he could have easily been knocked out, but he withstood that early punishment and literally dominated the rest of the fight.  My prediction for this fight? Seven rounds to five with Money pulling out a close decision. I do think this will be an action packed fight that will set up a nice rematch in September for Mayweather’s swan song.  

Well, there you have it. My analysis of what should be an incredible mega-event.

So…in the words of Bart Scott: “CAN'T WAIT!!”