By Ben Pierce
22.08 - As the showdown between Oscar De la Hoya and Fernando Vargas approaches the pre-fight hype begins and it seems De la Hoya trainer, Floyd Mayweather Jr. has become the primary spokesman for team De la Hoya.
The question would be, is this just Mayweather Sr. running his mouth in his typical fashion or a calculated ploy by the De la Hoya camp?
I think the latter to be the case as De la Hoya attempts to lure Fernando Vargas into the pre-fight hype without smudging his "Golden Boy" image or being involved himself. I believe it is a deliberate ploy, an attempt to distract and disrupt Vargas during training and to affect his mental state going into the fight. A game as old as boxing itself, but usually played out by the boxers, not the trainers.
We saw the beginnings of this at the press conference for the original fight date in May of this year, but it has really begun in earnest as the new fight date approaches. It seems that Mayweather Sr. is taking every opportunity to slam Fernando Vargas and to illicit a response from him. Mayweather even held a national media teleconference recently, with De la Hoya not participating.
But Fernando Vargas has not bought into their game and refuses to address Mayweather or his comments. In frustration Mayweather has lashed out at those around Vargas, even going as far as to downgrade longtime Vargas trainer and father figure, Eduardo Garcia.
Team De la Hoya has the perfect spokesman in Mayweather. His image cannot be tarnished any more than it has already been. Mayweather, known to trash talk about his own family, as well as other fighters and their trainers, has everything to gain and nothing to lose.
So lets take a closer look at the man who loves to talk and downgrade others.
Mayweather is a convicted drug smuggler, serving over three years of a five year federal drug trafficking sentence. Mayweather and others were convicted of smuggling cocaine into the US in detergent boxes from 1987-1992.
Mayweather Sr. was a former boxer of no great accomplishment. He was a professional boxer for about eleven years and never won or contented for a world title. His only claim to fame is being stopped by a young Sugar Ray Leonard and losing to Marlon Starling on two occasions. He had a mediocre record of 29-6-1. Only six of his thirty-six opponents even has a winning record. His own brother, Roger has been quoted as saying this about Mayweather Sr and his boxing career: "he lost to bullshit fighters, he was never the fighter I was."
He claims to be the catalyst behind the success of his son Floyd Mayweather Jr, but in truth it was his brother, Roger Mayweather who laid the foundation for Mayweather Jr, prepared him for the Olympics and trained him for his first fourteen fights. The father only assumed training his son after being released from prison. If anything, Mayweather failed to be there during the formative years of his sons life and of his boxing career.
A look into Mayweather Sr.'s family life is also revealing. His son fired him as his manager/trainer and gave him twenty-four hours before he evicted him from his house and repossessed his car. The father and son almost coming to blows several times over the career path chosen by Mayweather Jr. and money he claimed was owed to him by his father. This typical of Mayweather Sr.'s storied relationship with his other family members.
The only accomplishment of note that I can recall for Floyd Mayweather Sr. was his being named manager of the year in 1998 by the Boxing Writers Association of America. This after he had only been managing his son for about one year and he was without a license to even be a boxing manager! And in typical Mayweather fashion, he disrespected the award, because he did not also win trainer of the year! That award won by Jack Mosley, who Mayweather proceeded to call a joke.
Now as we listen to this ex-con, drug trafficker, and want-to-be manager-trainer, call Fernando Vargas a bum, a thug, a hoodlum and a gangster, one can only laugh at what appears to be Mayweather speaking about his own life. But Mayweather cannot help but give away the ploy of the De la Hoya camp, as he is quoted as saying: "I want him (Vargas) focused on me, he will focus himself right out of the game.
So the ploy by the De la Hoya camp is obvious. Let the big mouth, run his mouth and try to gain some advantage over Fernando Vargas in the process. One can only wonder why they seem so desperate, this late in the game...
But in closing I have a few words of my own, a poem, for the ghetto poet:
Your mouth may be big and we hear you talking,
But it sometimes it seems like your words are balking....
You say Oscar is the best and should win with ease, but then temper your words with ifs, and buts, talk straight to us please!
We know your are simply Oscar's whipping boy, but it is obvious your ploy...
It will not work, Vargas will be focused and whip your boy like a swarm of locusts!
So talk your trash and earn your pay....
Sept 14th will be Oscar's retirement day!