News Flash: You’re Not Floyd Mayweather
By: Sean Crose
Back when I was in my mid thirties, I decided to give up a career in retail and give the whole college thing a shot. I was a literary dude by nature, so I quickly took to my Lit classes like Danny Garcia to an overmatched opponent. One thing that particularly sticks in my mind about those days, however, is something I had to read about literary figures from the 20s…the fact that some of them thought they were more famous than they actually were. Sure, there were your Fitzgeralds, Joyces, Steins and Hemingways, but they were rarities. Some of the others simply had bloated impressions of themselves.
Billy Joe Saunders is said to want gobs of money to fight GGG. Same, apparently, with Daniel Jacobs. Leo Santa Cruz is stunned when a New York City crowd isn’t cheering wildly for him. Indeed, some fighters out there these days expect to be made rich merely by gracing the boxing world with their presence in the ring. Why? Because they feel it’s their due. Why? Honestly, I have no idea. I’ve read somewhere that the millennial generation is encouraged to ask potential employers during interviews what those employers can do for them. That’s right, they’re encouraged to interview the interviewers who might well provide them with financial and career stability. After all, they’re that important.
You don’t need to be a master of deduction to figure out these poor kids have been fed a lot of bull…and that’s particularly true in the case of many of today’s young fighters. Indeed, some contemporary fighters appear to have a very acute case of inflated ego at the moment. And while some of this may indeed be generational, there’s also the “Mayweather Effect” which might be in play here, as well. For, as many know, Floyd Mayweather is as known in some circles as much for who he didn’t fight than for who he did. Koysta Tszyu, Keith Thurman, Antontio Margarito, the list of people Floyd is said to have avoided can sometimes seem endless.
To argue the validity of the cherry picking argument right now is pointless, though, at least as it pertains to Mayweather. What is important is that a considerable number of name fighters apparently believe Floyd got rich and famous by virtue of selecting his opponents carefully. In other words, they believe Floyd took on easy touches for big money until there was an opportunity to face a top guy (usually over the hill) for a whole ton of cash. Unfortunately, these young fighters, who now emulate their hero, are missing a key component of the scenario:
The fact that Floyd was an amazing boxer.
Believe it. Like it or not, the guy was a once in a generation talent. Just how good was Mayweather? Well, I’d be hard pressed to find a single contemporary of Floyd’s who could beat the man, even on that contemporary’s best day. That also counts for the opponents I’m told Floyd avoided or aged out. The bottom line here is that guys like Jacobs, Saunders, Santa Cruz and others aren’t as good as Floyd was and probably never will be. Why they seem to feel they’re worthy of the man’s fame, wealth and clout is frankly puzzling.
And sad. These guys just aren’t seeing the world as they should…never a good thing.