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Ellerbe slams Arum and De La Hoya over Mayweather-McGregor criticism

By Jeff Aranow: Leonard Ellberbe of Mayweather Promotions has thin skin about the criticism that has been leveled by promoters Bob Arum and Oscar De La Hoya about the August 26 mega-fight between UFC fighter Conor McGregor and Floyd Mayweather Jr.

Ellberbe thinks the two promoters are basically hypocrites for downgrading Mayweather for facing McGregor. Ellerbe maintains that Arum was interested in matching his fighter Manny Pacquiao, and De La Hoya spoke of wanting to put his top fighter Saul Canelo Alvarez in with McGregor.

“When that other idiot Oscar [De La Hoya] said — and I’m saying that cause that’s what I think of him and yes, I did say that — when he says the same thing,” said Ellberbe via Yahoo Sports News. He would love to promote Conor McGregor and also he sees no other fight for him other than Canelo. Well what happened then? It was okay then as long as they could potentially be part of it. But now because they have nothing to do with it, then they want to trash it.”

De La Hoya seems to be upset about the way that Floyd placed his against McGregor 3 weeks in front of his big middleweight clash between Canelo and Gennady “GGG” Golovkin. He thinks the move could hurt the Canelo-GGG fight promotion by taking away interest in the fight by the boxing fans, which are focusing on the Mayweather-McGregor fight.

Additionally, Mayweather vs. McGregor fight so close to the Canelo vs. GGG fight could take away PPV buys from the latter fight. Mayweather’s PPV fight with McGregor sells for $89 to $99 on Showtime. For the boxing fans that order that fight, it’s going to put them in a tough situation to come up with another $70 to order Canelo vs. GGG just 3 weeks later on September 16. Will the fans buy both fights? Some will, but a lot of them won’t. Many of the fan will purchase the Mayweather-McGregor fight and opt not to pay for the Canelo and Golovkin fight. That’s what De La Hoya is upset about.

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There’s no doubt that De La Hoya has gone after the McGregor vs. Mayweather fight, but he has a reason to. Mayweather could have waited until well after the Canelo-GGG fight to stage his match against McGregor. The way that he just happened to stage his fight ahead of De La Hoya’s card by 3 weeks, it looked like Mayweather did that intentionally to partially cripple the Canelo fight. With Mayweather says he’s going to retire, he can only potentially hurt De La Hoya’s big middleweight fight this time.

If De La Hoya puts Canelo and Golovkin together later on this year, then there’s not much Mayweather can do about it. If he places his biggest star Gervonta Davis 3 weeks ahead of Canelo-GGG, no one will care, because Davis isn’t a huge star. No one will focus his fight. Of course, if Mayweather decides he wants to face McGregor in a rematch or fight some other UFC guy, then he could continue to hamper De La Hoya’s fight cards if that’s what his game is.

“$60 million, what’s wrong with that?” Ellerbe said in talking about the gate for the Mayweather-Conor fight. “Unlike another promoter who lies to you guys and tells you his event is sold out. His event is not sold out and there are thousands and thousands and thousands of tickets still available and they have a great fight, by the way, and I’ll be one of the ones that will purchase the pay-per-view.”

Ellerbe says the Canelo-GGG fight still isn’t sold out despite Golden Boy sending a press release out in the first week of July saying that the Canelo vs. Triple G is fight is sold out. If Canelo’s fight with Golovkin isn’t sold out yet, it’s very likely that it will be by September 16. It’s too big of a fight for it not to be a sellout, and there’s still over 1 month to go before the fight takes place. The fight obviously won’t bring in the same gate as the Mayweather vs. McGregor fight, because De La Hoya hasn’t hiked the prices on the tickets for the Canelo fight. He’s not pushed them to sky high prices like Mayweather has.

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There’s a possibility that the Mayweather-McGregor fight won’t sellout due to the high prices of the tickets. If the fight still isn’t sold-out by a few days before the fight, then ticket sellers are going to need to think about dropping the prices of the tickets to get them sold.

Ultimately, the Golovkin vs. Canelo fight will still likely be the far better fight compared to the Mayweather-McGregor fight. It might not make nearly as much money as that once in a lifetime fight, but it figures to be the much better fighter. The thing is, the Mayweather-McGregor fight is one and done type of fight. The two of them can’t keep fighting each other the way that Golovkin and Canelo can, because it’s likely going to be a dreadful mismatch.

After Mayweather beats the brakes off McGregor, there’s no way that a second fight between them can occur. Mayweather wouldn’t likely make the fight anyway because tends to disappear for long stretches after he gets big paydays. It was different when Mayweather under a 6-fight contract with Showtime. He had to keep fighting frequently in order to finish out that contract. But now that he’s not under card, he’ll likely disappear for a year or two before he spots another UFC fighter he wants to face.

No way do I see this as the end of Mayweather’s career. His boxing career is obviously over, but I think he’s going to continue to hand-pick UFC fighters to beat up. Hopefully, Mayweather doesn’t start selecting fighters from the WWE. That would look real bad if Mayweather goes that far to find easy fights to sell to the casual boxing fans.

“It’s amazing those idiotic comments that Bob [Arum] said the other day, telling people don’t buy their event because this and that,” Ellerbe said. “Have you ever heard me say that about any of your [fights]? None of this makes any sense. But what it comes down to, it comes down to the same guys that’s hating on the (expletive) are the same guys who wanted to be a part of it.

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Arum hasn’t been saying a whole lot about the Mayweather vs. McGregor fight other than pointing out the obvious about the fight being a mismatch and more of an “event” rather than a true fight. Arum is just telling the truth. Arum could say it’s a great fight, but he wouldn’t be giving his honest opinion. What Arum is saying is pretty much the same thing the boxing and MMA fans have been saying about the Mayweather-McGregor fight. They see it as an “Event” rather than a fight. The outcome is obvious. The only thing the fans don’t know is how Mayweather will beat McGregor. Will it be a knockout or a decision?

“He wasn’t saying that a few months ago when he openly, publicly said, ‘if Mayweather deal can’t come together, I’d love to put Manny Pacquiao in there.’ He wasn’t saying that then,” said Ellberbe. “It’s okay. I wish them nothing but the best. One of them is a great promoter and been around for a long, long time.”

This might be the last big fight that Mayweather Promotions puts on for a long time. If Mayweather doesn’t come back, then Mayweather Promotions are going to be in a position where their biggest star is Gervonta Davis, who fights at super featherweight. Davis is in the wrong division to become a big star. Mayweather isn’t likely going to be able to turn Davis into a PPV attraction during his career. There’s no one else in the Mayweather Promotions stable that has star appeal. Mayweather is the only one, and he’s supposedly going back into retirement after he beats McGregor on August 26.

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