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23rd Jul 2017

We must take Floyd Mayweather’s promised gameplan with several servings of salt

"I’m older, so I can’t move like I used to move."

Darragh Murphy

There came a point in Floyd Mayweather’s career when he had to stop guaranteeing that he’d make easy work of his opponents.

Because as those promises continued to ring true, interest waned.

What fight fan wants to spend money on a pay-per-view, the main event of which is something of a foregone conclusion?

So Mayweather had to rethink how to approach the build-up to his bouts. He had to persuade potential viewers that it would be worth their while splashing out on his pay-per-views by bigging up his opponents.

This was not based in humility and it wasn’t a respectful nod to his foe’s abilities.

This was basic marketing and it was a technique that served ‘Money’ incredibly well as fights that ended up wholly uncompetitive were promoted to perfection.

1,060,000 paid their hard-earned money to watch him effectively whitewash Juan Mauel Marquez. 1,250,000 tuned in to watch Mayweather knock out Victor Ortiz in the fourth round. And 1,400,000 watched Shane Mosley struggle to land a glove on ‘Money’ over 12 rounds.

Mayweather has an uncanny ability to make you believe that his upcoming opponent is a legitimate threat and that the contest will be a thrilling, back-and-forth spectacle that’s worth your time and money but, almost without fail, it turns out to be a defensive masterclass with one fighter swinging at air and the other focused solely on outpointing.

The biggest fight-hyping challenge of the 40-year-old’s career to date is currently underway, with the 49-0 great attempting to trick the general public into believing that he may well meet his match against a mixed martial artist who has never competed under boxing rules.

Mayweather’s giving it his all though and has rolled out a doozy of a claim five weeks ahead of his super-fight with UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor.

The 1996 Olympic bronze medallist has insisted that, due to his age, he will not be able to utilise the kind of footwork and head movement that he once relied upon and will therefore have to engage McGregor in a brawling firefight.

“He wants to win bad,” Mayweather told “He really wants to win bad, extremely bad.

“With other fighters, it plays out two ways when you’re facing Floyd Mayweather. You’ve got some guys that play it safe. You’ve got some guys like Maidana that go straight for the kill.

“He’s going to come out and go for the kill like Mayweather-Maidana I. He’s going to come out and go for the kill. He’s a heavy hitter, so I’ve got to be cautious.

“Remember, I’m older, so I can’t move like I used to move, so it’s basically going to be a toe-to-toe battle.

“It’s going to be exciting. He’s going to come fight. He’s going to come out. He’s upset. I’ve seen it before.

“When these fighters get upset with me, they come out like they’re going to try and kill me. My job is to do what I do, just keep my composure.

“He does have a chance. Every time two warriors go out there and compete, anything can happen.

“We just saw a week ago, two weeks ago, a guy who started boxing at 18, a teacher, beat one of the best fighters of all time, which was Manny Pacquiao, so anything can happen in a combat sport.”

Mayweather is not being honest with the above statement and he is under no obligation to be honest either.

It’s no more than a sales pitch from a seasoned salesman who definitely does not plan on standing toe-to-toe with a heavy hitter who can turn Mayweather’s professional record, as well as the sport of boxing, into a joke with one lucky punch.

Mayweather is going to be his sensible, conservative self on August 26 and you’d be a fool for believing otherwise.