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It's all Floyd Mayweather Jr.'s fault, his numerous critics say

July 20, 2010 | 12:52 pm

Mayweather_400 When the first round of talks to stage a Manny Pacquiao-Floyd Mayweather Jr. fight crumbled early this year, Pacquiao endured some criticism for not accepting a mutual drug-testing plan that had called for random blood and urine tests through fight night.

Now, as a second chapter of failed talks appears to be closing this week with Pacquiao's promoter, Bob Arum, who announced he's in talks to stage a Pacquiao bout against either Antonio Margarito or Miguel Cotto, Mayweather is being deemed the man to blame.

"I'm not interested in rushing into anything," Mayweather told Associated Press this weekend.

That attitude has been grilled in opinion stories throughout the country. Like this piece. And this one.

I spoke to a source close to Team Mayweather Monday night, who declined to be identified because they weren't authorized to speak publicly on the matter.

But the explanation by Mayweather to relax with family and enjoy life rather than prepare for Pacquiao on Nov. 13 in Las Vegas is rooted in -- what else? -- money.

The source told me the unbeaten Mayweather cleared about $25 million in his September 2009 victory over Juan Manuel Marquez and another $40 million -- counting pay-per-view profits -- in his impressive May 1 showing against Shane Mosley.

"Sixty-five million in nine months, that's pretty good for nine months, right?" the Mayweather source said.

Even a Pacquiao representative said there may be tax considerations that may be prohibitive to making this bout -- where Mayweather would earn in excess of $50 million -- this year.

Mayweather knows the cash for Pacquiao will still be there if he doesn't fight the Filipino superstar until next year, and it might be even more following a likely November victory by Pacquiao and a public appetite for the fight that will probably increase because of these past setbacks.

Name-calling or hits to the reputation aside, that's the way it is.

-- Lance Pugmire

Photo: Floyd Mayweather Jr. during his fight against Shane Mosley on May 1. Credit: Jed Jacobsohn / Getty Images