WBO’s stripping of Mayweather is no big deal
- Updated: July 8, 2015
This week the World Boxing Organization took the innocuous step of stripping Floyd Mayweather Jr. of their 147 pound welterweight title that the undefeated fighter lifted from Manny Pacquiao following their record breaking event in May 2015.
Among their multiple reasoning’s, listed ad nauseam here, the WBO trumpets home the fact that “no WBO Champion may hold a non-WBO Championship in a weight class that is different from the weight class of his WBO Championship.”
This reasoning was championed by the organization and sent waves throughout the boxing industry on the heels of this reasoning.
It has to be asked though; other than the WBO, who really cares?
The WBO’s public outcry for Mayweather to either state his intentions with the 147 title or else really just comes off as sour grapes when one looks at it objectively.
Towards the end of their reasoning, the issue is brought up that Mayweather failed to pay the “$200,000.000 fee required of him as a participant of a WBO World Championship Contest.”
For what precisely?
What exactly does the WBO, or any other sanctioning body for that matter, offer to the boxers in order to merit their sanctioning fee?
Perhaps the WBO could fly Mayweather Jr. to their headquarters in Puerto Rico, as the WBO has done for other boxers, most recently done in April 2015 when Rocky Martinez was belted by WBO president Francisco “Paco” Valcarcel.
Thing is, Mayweather Jr. is a millionaire 200, 300 or even 400 times over, owns his own private jet and can curtsy himself all around the country or world whenever he so desires.
So what other motivation is there for Mayweather Jr., a fighter who is familiar with holding trinkets from major organizations as he has held a major title since 1998, to lay down such a sum for the right to be called the WBO’s champion?
It should be noted that in Mayweather’s 19 years career, May 2 was the first fight to which the WBO organization took part of.
In an interview with media outlet Fight Hype made public just days before the fight (February 10) was officially announced, Valcarcel was quoted as follows:
“You have too much stuff all around the board that have to be agreed too; Showtime, HBO, promoters and all kinds of things. I have my doubts that the fight will take place. I don’t even like to mention the fight because I’m not directly dealing with that, but reading the comments from the press, one time they say they’re gonna fight and the next day they say they won’t fight. And then another day they say somebody is lying and then they say the fight was already signed. I don’t know what really happened. People want to see Mayweather and Pacquiao and I want to see Mayweather and Pacquiao, but again, like I tell you before, I got my doubts that that fight is going to happen. You got too much stuff there to come to terms and agree to and it’s not easy when you’re dealing with two, three, four, five, six and seven parts; not easy…not easy.”
The mega bout was announced on February 20, 2015.
Just like everyone else, Valcarcel did not expect the long awaited bout to come to fruition.
Yet unlike everyone else, Valcarcel was anticipating a $200,000 sanctioning fee in the event the bout was actually consummated.
This writer has no idea the last time the WBO received a sanctioning fee that high, or even in the six-figure region.
It seems as though the WBO feels slighted following May 2, just like the peoples who took their dissent to litigation following the fight.
Perhaps the WBO should attempt the same action at take Mayweather to court in order to receive their six-figure sum.
What the WBO actions following May 2 contribute to is the dissolving of the major titles in boxing today.
The rumors of Premier Boxing Champions creating their own titles seems more and more the optimal move for the sport to take: have one champion in every division.
It is unknown if these PBC belts come to fruition that there will be sanctioning fees attached.
The WBO should not worry about being frozen out following May 2, as Mayweather, who holds the WBC, WBA, WBO and Ring Magazine in the welterweight division as well as the WBC and WBA super welterweight belts, was quoted as planning to relinquish all titles prior to his September 2015 farewell fight.
“Other fighters need to get a chance,” Mayweather said. “I’m not greedy. It’s time to let other fighters fight for the belt.”
Perhaps soon, there will only be one major title from a sanctioning body in the sport of boxing, and they might not even ask for a sanctioning fee.