It appears as though some members of Floyd Mayweather’s camp are getting tired of standing idly by as their fighter gets unfairly bashed in the press.
Leonard Ellerbe, one of Mayweather’s closest advisers, issued a strong statement on Monday. According to Ellerbe, the negotiations -- over a highly anticipated Manny Pacquiao-Mayweather Jr. blockbuster fight -- never even happened.
This, of course, contradicts everything Top Rank promoter and Pacquiao’s personal cheerleader, Bob Arum, has been saying.
Arum told the press on June 30 he had just finished speaking with the Mayweather camp and was waiting on a decision on whether they would fight this year. He then proceeded to give Mayweather until this past Friday to accept the terms of the fight. He even went as far as to put a nifty little clock on the Top Rank Web site counting down the days, hours and minutes until said deadline.
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The famed promoter also said if Mayweather didn't agree to the terms of the fight, he would instead have Pacquiao fight Antonio Margarito or Miguel Cotto on November 13.
When the deadline came and went, Arum told reporters via teleconference with reporters that he had been working on the agreement with Golden Boy CEO, Al Haymon, and had used HBO Sports president Ross Greenburg as the go-between for the negotiations.
Ellerbe, apparently, disagrees with Arum’s version of the story.
"Here are the facts," Ellerbe said in Monday's statement. "Al Haymon, [Golden Boy Promotions CEO] Richard Schaefer and myself speak to each other on a regular basis, and the truth is no negotiations have ever taken place, nor was there ever a deal agreed upon by Team Mayweather or Floyd Mayweather to fight Manny Pacquiao on Nov. 13. Either Ross Greenburg or Bob Arum is not telling the truth, but history tells us who is lying."
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Ellerbe’s last point was clearly a shot at the controversial Arum, who once famously said, “Yesterday I was lying, today I am telling the truth.”
When asked about Ellerbe’s comments, Greenburg had this to say to ESPN:
"As always we have no comment."
Arum, for his part, played the role of the confused promoter.
"This is like absurd unreality," Arum told ESPN. "I'm not going to be party to this [expletive]. When I heard about [the statement] I thought it was a joke. Ross said he was talking to Haymon. He certainly wasn't making it up. And Haymon was relaying conversations to Ross allegedly that Floyd had with him. At least that is what Ross says."
Fans of each side will believe whoever they want, but this much is for certain:
The people involved in this fight and all its surrounding rumors are either (a) absolute geniuses for their ability to build up hype and expectations or (b) the biggest idiots to ever walk the earth and are about to lose out on the most massive payday in the history of professional boxing.