After months of speculation, we finally have an official announcement. Floyd Mayweather Jr. will be meeting Robert Guerrero on May 4 in Las Vegas.
Perhaps a bigger surprise than that announcement was the news that Mayweather would be switching from HBO to rival Showtime. After a lengthy relationship with HBO, Mayweather has signed a multi-fight agreement with Showtime, which has always trailed their rivals in boxing prominence. This announcement was made by Floyd Mayweather Jr. at the same toime as the fight announcement.
The deal is huge for Showtime, which is owned by CBS. Mayweather is the biggest name in boxing at the moment, and the deal could include as many a six pay-per-view fights over the next 30 months.
“They were extremely aggressive from the start, and they made it clear they want Floyd Mayweather to be the face of Showtime,” Mayweather adviser Leonard Ellerbe said. “It’s the ultimate compliment to a fighter like Floyd. They were aggressive, and the deal that they put on the table was essentially a deal that you can’t refuse.”
Of course the first fight of the deal comes against Robert Guerrero (31-1-1, 18 KO’s), the current WBC welterweight champion. Although the venue has not been made official, it is likely to take place at the MGM Grand, where Mayweather has had his last six fights.
Floyd Mayweather will turn 36 on Sunday, and has not been very active in the last several years. However, Ellerbe said that will change and we will see much more of him in the next few years.
“He has a renewed motivation to stay active and to take on everybody out there,” Ellerbe said. “When Floyd is more active, he’s going to be beyond untouchable. He’s proved he can stay sharp with those layoffs in the past, but he’s going to be more active now.”
Robert Guerrero was one of several names thrown out as a potential opponent, and won the sweepstakes to earn the largest payday of his career. He has not lost since 2005, and he most recently beat Andre Berto last November.
Jeff Mayweather, Floyd’s uncle, seemed to think it was the fight that made the most sense at this time.
“I think Guerrero is the right fight on the right day. It’s what the fans want, especially on Cinco de Mayo,” Mayweather said.
“He definitely earned the right to fight Floyd,” Ellerbe said. “He won the Mayweather sweepstakes, so now he gets to see what the grand prize is, and when he opens up that grand prize, it’s going to be a can of (tail) whooping.”