Mayweather and the Crucifixion of Ali


Floyd Mayweather Jr., Manny Pacquiao

Mayweather hugs Pacquiao for the easy payday.

By Samuel Doku

Floyd Mayweather took Manny Pacquiao to school on Saturday and unfolded his patented defensive brilliance to neutralize any fresh ideas Pacquiao had of dislocating his unbeaten record. In the end, all three judges scored the fight in Mayweather’s favor, with two of the judges scoring the bout 116 to 114 while the third made Mayweather a more convincing winner with a 118-112 score card.

In probably what has gone down in history as the most-hyped fight ever, proceeds from Saturday’s bout were expected to be north of $400 million.

Pacquiao raised the hopes of many boxing aficionados that he would come swinging wild and early in the fight and in the process would display a reckless disregard for his own safety in hopes of knocking out Mayweather.

On Saturday, however, instead of the promised reckless abandonment, boxing fans saw caution, and instead of hope, they saw fear written all over Pacquiao’s efforts, leaving Mayweather as still untouchable in the sport.

On a related note, before the fight, Mayweather seemed to have committed a sacrilegious offence with his defiant declaration in an interview with ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith that he is better than the revered Muhammad Ali, the wildly acclaimed greatest fighter of all time, and from whom Mayweather might have borrowed some of his defensive tactics.

“I’m better than Ali. . .He called himself the greatest ever; I call myself the best ever (TBE). I’m still undefeated,” said Mayweather. When Mayweather was reminded that Ali beat possibly the most intimidating fighter of his generation in George Foreman, he brushed aside Ali’s ingenuity in Zaire in 1974 with a wry comment that Ali virtually went in and lay on the ropes for Foreman to punch himself out before Ali knocked him out.

Ironically, in dismissing Ali’s rope-a-dope style in Zaire, Mayweather seemed to have castigated the same methodology he has also used so far in amassing his unblemished 48-0 record That is using ring craftiness and perspicuity to overcome opponents. So was it fair for Mayweather to have made those wan and ashy comments on the greatest?

Well, this piece is not intended to judge Mayweather. But what is obvious is that if many people are unappreciative of the haughty fashion in which Mayweather flaunts his wealth, he ostracized many more with his careless dismissal of Ali’s victory over Foreman in Zaire.




About Dr. Sam Doku
Dr. Samuel O. Doku is a professor and a writer. He earned his Ph.D. in English with concentration in African American Literature from Howard University. He is a W.E.B. Du Bois scholar whose book is titled Cosmopolitanism in the Fictive Imagination of W.E.B. Du Bois: Toward the Realization of a Revolutionary Art. His articles have been published on Google Scholar, in the International Journal of English Language, Literature and Humanities, and College English Association Magazine (CEAMAG).