Floyd Mayweather and Miguel Cotto’s May 5th clash is reminiscent of HBO’s “Game of Thrones.”
The showdown between the undefeated Mayweather and Cotto has been billed as “Ring Kings” primarily based on Floyd Mayweather’s dominance over the sport for the past sixteen years. By comparison the Mayweather empire is much like the Lannister dynasty from the HBO’s series — wealthy and powerful. Mayweather has ruled the boxing world with an iron fist and — whether it is love, envy, hate or something in between — he invokes emotion out of anyone he comes in contact with. Undefeated and rarely tested, there is much speculation as to whether anyone can challenge him.
The latest to step up and attempt to unseat the king is Miguel Cotto. A heavy underdog much like the Stark family from “Game Of Thrones.” He is battle tested but has come up short when it counted most against Manny Pacquiao and Antonio Margarito. The latter was a questionable loss that he would later avenge. Because of those blemishes, nobody is giving the current WBA junior middleweight champion much of a chance against Mayweather.
But there are reasons that we still play out these epic battles. Records do not matter, title belts mean nothing and money is serves no purpose on the battlefield. Should Mayweather win, his rule will continue. However, if Miguel Cotto can somehow pull off the unthinkable, he will surely send the boxing world spiraling out of control.
At Wednesday’s final press conference, Mayweather and Cotto sat upon their respective thrones and delivered their final speeches before heading into battle. It has been all about Floyd Mayweather leading up to the fight. He has carried the HBO 24/7 series, been the focal point of the conversation and is constantly asked when he will conquer the Pacquiao kingdom. During the press conference, the cover of ESPN The Magazine’s appropriately titled “The Money Issue” was unveiled and features none other than Floyd Mayweather on the cover.
The king sat casually on his throne with a casual outfit of jeans, t-shirt and sunglasses as the sponsors (aka those who help fill his bank accounts to epic proportions) checked in and the usual pleasantries with the media were exchanged. His seemingly scaled back attire is likely still more expensive than what the peasants who try to dethrone him can afford. He looks relaxed because he is relaxed. As the reigning pay per view king, there isn’t too much that he hasn’t seen before.
“Miguel is a true warrior, a tough champion and will go down as one of the best,” Mayweather said as he appeared to be going through the usual motions of the final press conference. “But to be the best you have to face the top opposition out there. This fight had to happen. I’ve been here so many times that I don’t have to brag and boast. I’ll see you guys May 5th.”
Meanwhile, Miguel Cotto sat on his borrowed throne silently. Perhaps curious as to what it will be like if he was king. He’s spent the majority of the conference showing no emotion. Rarely does he smile or frown. His eyes hide behind his dark shades and it is rather difficult to figure out what he’s thinking. If he was overwhelmed by the moment, we wouldn’t know it. He has ice in his veins. While Mayweather is known as being outspoken, Cotto is a silent assassin.
“As you know, I like to talk in the ring,” Cotto says when he approaches the podium. “I had a tremendous camp and I feel pretty good. I trust everyone on my team and trust myself even more. I’m prepared and happy to get in the ring.”
As always, it wasn’t much from Cotto. His trainer Pedro Diaz had more to say about what will happen come Saturday night. “Talking doesn’t get you the victory, your fists, the preparation and the execution is what gets you the victory,” Diaz said about his warrior. “The 5th of May you will see a victorious Miguel Cotto.”
Yes, we have heard it before. 42 have tried and all 42 have failed against Floyd Mayweather. Game plans are laid out and later torn apart once Mayweather steps into the ring. It almost seems useless for a trainer to try and develop a blueprint to defeat what has never been defeated.
“Cotto is a classy champion it has been for a number of years,” Mayweather’s advisor Leonard Ellerbe said before directing his next comments towards Diaz. “You’re right, talk doesn’t win fights, fighters do. Last time I checked, Miguel Cotto is fighting Floyd Mayweather. Keep your opinion to yourself and we’ll see who comes out victorious on Saturday night.”
As history tells us, all dynasties eventually crumble. In Cotto’s eyes, the Mayweather reign must come to an end and is far overdue for a conquering. Floyd Mayweather will look to prove that theory wrong once again on May 5th. If anyone is going to end the Mayweather dynasty, it will be Floyd Mayweather when he hangs up his gloves.
This is the part where boxing and the fantasy novels about empires, magic and such differ. You see, in boxing’s battle of kings, the rulers don’t let their minions fight for them. In order to demonstrate their supremacy, they will square off with each other. There are no armies, no weapons and the size of your bank account is meaningless. It’s up to only two men to decide who will rule and who shall be conquered.
In the end, only one will be king.