Retired boxer Floyd Mayweather certainly has a penchant for two things: drawing attention to himself and making money. A former opponent of his, Oscar De La Hoya, has become a successful boxing promoter who is dipping his toe into mixed martial arts, but can’t help but criticize Mayweather for the way he does both.
“I think he just wants attention,” De La Hoya told MMAjunkie on Monday. “That’s all it is, and Floyd is a fighter who should just stick to boxing.”
After boxing former UFC champion Conor McGregor in the Irishman’s professional boxing debut, Mayweather teased getting into the UFC’s Octagon for a rematch. It has not materialized, but it has garnered a lot of attention for Mayweather, who can’t seem to move along without a white-hot spotlight.
His latest headlines came when he was announced for a bout under the Rizin FF banner in Japan on New Year’s Eve, where he was expected to fight undefeated kickboxer Tenshin Nasukawa in a bout for which the rule set was yet to be negotiated… per Mayweather.
A few days later, Mayweather posted on social media denying that he had ever agreed to the bout and that he went along with a press conference and interviews endorsing the bout in Japan because he felt bad for everyone that had traveled there for the announcement. It was mind boggling at best.
De La Hoya simply doesn’t think Mayweather can remove himself from the spotlight, but also doesn’t think he’ll ever live up to the MMA tease he has propagated.
“I don’t think he’ll ever step into the cage. Making up these special rules, it’s ridiculous,” De La Hoya said.
“If you want to get involved and be in the MMA world, then do it. Don’t set the rules. I just think he should stick to boxing. That’s what he knows best. But he can’t help himself. If he ever fights Khabib inside the Octagon, come on, we all know what’s going to happen. That fight’s going to end in one minute… or 30 seconds.”
It’s not surprise to De La Hoya that Mayweather would avoid fighting under a true MMA rule set. Mayweather only does what is good for Mayweather.
“Floyd is a fighter who knows how to pick and choose his opponents at the right time for his benefit,” he said. “When he fought Conor McGregor, the reason why I was hugely against it is because it was unfair to Conor. It was totally unfair to Conor McGregor. I mean, Conor is not a boxer. He’s not a boxer fighting 12 rounds, and it was totally unfair, but these are the things that Floyd does to his advantage.”
Mayweather has been hugely successful following that model. He picks and chooses his battles so that he minimizes the odds against him while maximizing his pocket boot. It worked well against McGregor, where he stopped the Irishman in the 10th round and walked away with a nine-figure paycheck.
It’s unclear what exactly is happening with Rizin after the fight promotion issued an apology following Mayweather’s social media statement, but added that they are still negotiating with Mayweather’s camp.
Regardless of the resolution, it’s sure to keep Mayweather’s name scrolling through our Twitter feeds and popping up on Instagram, and it could lead to Mayweather having to make another deposit in his bank account.
Meanwhile, De La Hoya is busy promoting a Nov. 24 showdown between UFC Hall of Famers Chuck Liddell and Tito Ortiz, which opens the floodgates to his Golden Boy Promotions entering the mixed martial arts fray for real.