By Michael Battista
You know that scene in every slasher film over the last 20 years? You know the one where the young guy is stumbling around in the dark, alone, with the ominous music playing in the background? You know the killer is going to get him, you just don’t know when. Then the music stops, and you’re really expecting it to happen, and it still doesn’t. That summarizes the proposed fight between boxers Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather.
Between 2008 and 2009, the two fighters were experiencing a lot of success in their respective careers. Mayweather had come out of his brief retirement to face Juan Manuel Márquez, and Pacquiao had become one of the top fighters in the world, beating Márquez once and also scoring an eighth-round TKO over Oscar Del La Hoya, one of the sports’s best fighters. Over the next few months, Mayweather would take shots at Pacquiao and his accomplishments, saying they weren’t impressive since he’d beaten the same people.
Then, the media and public went insane, demanding this fight. In late 2009, it was leaked that a fight was being planned for May of 2010, but after Mayweather required “Olympic style drug testing,” negotiations fell through. Then in the middle of 2010, reports of another negotiation were being circulated, but neither fighter would comment on it fully, and promoters said they knew nothing. Since then, the situation has been continous, with people saying every so often that, “Hey, maybe it’s happening,” followed by nothing.
This entire ordeal can be made into a professional wrestling storyline, and it would make perfect sense. It has the drama — the over-zealous guy who can’t be beat against the small guy that everyone loves, while the media and fan attention around it is absurd.
But the long ordeal may finally be over. Currently, reports say that both fighters have agreed to a $250 million fight in Las Vegas sometime in May. If this happens, this can be the biggest match in boxing since Ali vs. Frazier.
Even if you’re not into boxing, chances are you’re still going to watch this if you are a sports fan. The same way the Super Bowl draws everyone in, this fight will have viewing parties. It’s only a matter of time before these two meet, and when they do, expect a lot of ads, a lot of sponsors and a lot of people wondering why Sportscenter suddenly cares about this sport.