Mayweather To Participate in ‘WrestleMania XXIV
By Eric Thomas: According to the latest gossip, undefeated WBC welterweight champion Floyd Mayweather Jr. (39-0, 25 KOs) will be taking part in WWE’s “WrestleMania XXIV” at Citrus Bowl, which takes place on March 20th. For his role in the affair, Mayweather, 30, will be reportedly receiving a payment of twenty million dollars, an almost absurd amount of money for an even that will be more staged play-acting than a true athletic contest. Mayweather will be pitted against the wrestler called “Big Show,” a 7′ foot 399 lb mountain of a wrestler whose real name is Paul Wight.
Though it will be obviously a staged event, there is always the possibility that the slight 5’8″ Mayweather can be potentially injured while getting thrown around by Wight. Even if Wight accidentally falls on Mayweather, there can be major injures that can occur from a wrestler his size landing on the diminutive Mayweather. While I don’t personally care for professional wrestling as a sport, I can see why Mayweather, aside from the obvious factor of the huge $20 million dollar payday, would choose to make this move. Wrestling is actually more popular than boxing at this point, and by Mayweather fighting one of the sports’ biggest stars, both figuratively and in terms of fan interest, Mayweather will be increasing his fan base substantially with the younger audience.
You have to remember, many of these fans have never seen Mayweather fight due to most of his fights being on PPV, so this will be the first time that a lot of them will have seen him in action other than commercial advertisements pushing his fights with Oscar De La Hoya and Ricky Hatton. At the same time, it will be helping boxing as well because the fans that begin looking more into the career of Mayweather will, in turn, likely pick up interest in other boxers, hopefully ones that don’t choose to fight hand picked opponents like he has down in the past couple of years.
While we’re on the subject of hand-picked opponents, there is a part of me that is put off by Mayweather’s recent tendency to choose big money fights against over-matched opponents like Hatton and De La Hoya, rather than taking on the best in the welterweight division. It seems as if Mayweather if more into entertainment than in actually going up against the best, and proving that he is in fact the best fighter in the division.
However, from his standpoint, he’s only doing what is smart for him, trying to make the most money by fighting opponents that the fans want to see. Perhaps most other fighters in his place would do the exact same thing as him. That doesn’t mean that I like it or approve, but I can understand him and his reasonings for doing so. I doubt seriously that Mayweather will lose many boxing fans because of yet another commercial move on his part. Even if he does, he’ll be in a better position overall because of the new fan base that he’ll be producing from this venture. It will be interesting to see what he does next to top this move. Perhaps figure skating, basketball or golf?