Floyd Mayweather Jr. camp responds to HBO, Arum comments
Hours after the president of HBO Sports said he had negotiated with both sides in an effort to make a Manny Pacquiao-Floyd Mayweather Jr. mega-fight on Nov. 13, Mayweather's lead adviser again denied the claim.
"Floyd is his own boss, calling his own shots," Leonard Ellerbe told The Times on Monday night.
HBO Sports President Ross Greenburg said in a prepared statement earlier Monday that he indeed had discussed the fight with representatives of both Pacquiao and Mayweather in an effort to make a bout that would match the repeat fighter of the year from the Philippines with unbeaten Mayweather.
The mediation failed, and Pacquiao proceeded to a replacement fight against Antonio Margarito on Nov. 13 at a site to be determined. The bout will be for the vacant WBS super-welterweight title, possibly Pacquiao's record eighth weight-division world title.
Ellerbe has said someone, either Arum or Greenburg, is "lying" if they believe Mayweather has participated in negotiations to fight. That point was effectively repeated Monday by Richard Schaefer, the Golden Boy Promotions executive who had been called upon in the past to assist Mayweather in fight negotiations.
Ellerbe said neither Mayweather nor his representatives ever entered into anything beyond cursory conversation with Greenburg. Ellerbe said Mayweather was doing what he had been since defeating Shane Mosley on May 1: taking time off to enjoy his life, his family and participate in other personal functions, as he said in this independent video June 2.
"This whole thing is getting blown out of proportion," Ellerbe said. "Floyd made it clear what his intentions were, after the fight ... and again in an interview last week. He's on vacation.
"Obviously, the parties making these statements need to understand what the term 'negotiation' really means. Calling to ask Floyd what he's thinking about doing is not a negotiation. How ... can you have a negotiation when the principal has made it clear he's not interested in doing anything at this time."
That certainly doesn't sit well with the boxing public, which has clamored for Mayweather-Pacquiao, but it should be noted "Money" earned about $65 million in two fights, in the September 2009 bout against Juan Manuel Marquez and the Mosley bout.
Ellerbe said he wasn't worried about Arum's claims that it's "unpardonable" to "lie to the press," as he said Ellerbe had done in previously insisting there were no negotiations. There's no love lost between Mayweather and his former promoter.
"I pay absolutely no attention to what Arum says," Ellerbe said. "He's just bitter because Floyd left him to become his own boss and has gone on to make $125 million since."
So when will Mayweather fight again? Apparently, whenever he wakes up one day and decides to. "When the time is right, it'll be right," Ellerbe said. "It'll be very simple."
That'll be something to see, after one prior collapsed negotiation in January and now this month's failed whatever-you-want-to-call-it.
-- Lance Pugmire
Photo: Floyd Mayweather Jr. in action against Shane Mosley on May 1. Credit: Jed Jacobsohn / Getty Images