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Floyd Mayweather JR: Miguel Cotto, Manny Pacquiao & More – AN OPEN LETTER – BOXING NEWS

By Gina L. Caliboso

My Dearest Floyd –

So, it’s been most difficult for me to express in a logical and coherent article just how much you mean to me and the sport of boxing. But here it is, as Strunk & White’s Elements of Style suggest, one should write as if writing a love letter, so here it goes. I absolutely love and hate you at the same time. I’ll do my best to try and convey both emotions, if I manage to throw in some point about your past behavior, I’m not necessarily keeping score, as we women torn apart by our emotions tend to do. But instead, I will be as calm and collected as I can to again, express why I can love you and hate you at the same time.

First, you are an undisputed and undefeated champion based on your record. You haven’t faced an opponent that could even match your boxing skill. In looking at all your bouts, and I have to admit, that if I had the financial means when you fought against Ortiz, I would have ordered the bout. But I didn’t and I had to babysit. I watch the replay and as the saying goes, “Protect yourself at all times.” Ortiz failed to do so and got knocked out. Now, I don’t agree with your confrontation with Larry Merchant, but I understand your frustration. You do have a lot of haters out there. But you never ask for the fans to love you. You fight because you are a boxer in the business of boxing. It doesn’t matter if the fans like you or not. You still get the PPV’s – no question.

But, I do have a couple of points about your choice of opponent. You retired. And as Apollo Creed in “Rocky III” mentioned, it can be “too quiet” for a fighter. I suppose that’s what happened to you. You did your sabbatical, your retirement, but you never stopped training. And maybe I’m giving you too much credit here – but a boxer’s heart is always alive no matter what. However, I would question your fight frequency. While you chose to fight certain fighters, you heard the championship rise of a certain Filipino fighter and maybe, it was too much to bear that you weren’t the center of the boxing world. You would have to agree your ego is a ‘bit’ out of control. But you entered into every fight with the confident swag you’ve always had and beat your opponents. I think you made it look too easy. And, your boxing style isn’t exactly the most exciting. Your defensive posture and speed are difficult to match and you don’t have much competition.

Second, speaking of competition, you could have really put the fight together against Pacquiao. As much as you espouse that you are a hard working champion, Pacquiao didn’t exactly have his titles handed over to him either. Have you ever been to the Philippines, Floyd? It’s a rather poor country. Pacquiao, if you look at prior fight footage, was not always heavily touted when he started to rise through the rankings. But he had his vision to get the proper training through Freddie Roach and he does thank God for all his success. The accusations of steroid use were uncalled for. Just as you say you’ve worked hard, so has Pacquiao, no man has any right to take that accomplishment away. Also, I’d argue with you about the amount of opponents you’ve had since you’ve been back into action. You retired in 2007 and came back two years later to fight against Mexican champ Juan Manuel Marquez in 2009. You beat him easily. Then you fought against Sugar Shane Mosley in 2010, then finally Victor Ortiz in 2011. In that same time frame, Pacquiao, and without a break, has fought TRIPLE the amount of opponents. Were you simply waiting for him to get more physically beaten so that you can challenge him then fight him when you are hardly what we call an ‘active’ fighter? I don’t believe I’m the first to ever mention this possibility.

As for your other actions outside the ring – the name calling of Pacquiao, your legal troubles, you simply are not the only athlete facing similar challenges. As you know, champion Muhammad Ali always talked about his opponents and he backed up any of his comments against his opponent. Ali may have sounded arrogant, but as you’ve mentioned before, it is partly entertainment for the fans. Athletes put on public displays of all their hard work and dedication and we do tend to put athletes on a higher plane of behavior because athletes represent a level of accomplishment AND are paid well for their performances. You burning money and gambling while the country is facing challenging economic times, it seems a bit insensitive, excessive and materialistic. I thought you looked like an idiot. However, while the videos of you burning money are broadcast, it isn’t broadcast that you give to your charities and how you wanted to contribute to Joe Frazier’s funeral. Yes, I do keep an eye on your Facebook posts.

However, if you wish or even care how the public perceives you, what are you plans after Cotto? More importantly, instead of broadcasting your narcissism about your accomplishments, couldn’t you possibly think about what you want to be left as a legacy? If it’s your record as an undefeated boxer, then you’ve already done that. However, isn’t it a bit cliché to continue to be the boxer with legal problems facing jail time? This, to me, is old. Step away from your ego, Floyd, it will hurt you in the end.

I’m trying to find the words to finally express how I love you and your contribution to the sweet science. Despite your antics, I appreciate your boxing skill, but get easily irritated when your excessive and punk behavior takes over. I know I like hard working fighters that show up to fight and with a little attitude, but I guess, Floyd, that’s exactly what you do, but more importantly, you win. I can’t take that away from you at all.

Enjoy your time in the ring, Floyd. Good luck to you on May 5th.

With Warm Regards,

Gina L. Caliboso

PS – if you can manage it, I’d love tickets ringside.

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