By John Lumpkin
: Every time Antonio Margarito or Miguel Cotto fight, we hear the cries of how Floyd Mayweather has avoided fighting them. We want to see these fights because they are fascinating to us and there is a chance that one or both these men could defeat Mayweather. We cannot fathom why Mayweather would turn down $8 million to face Margarito or fail to even discuss facing possibly the very best fighter in his own division. In fact, today we hear the rumblings that people want to place Cotto above Mayweather in the welterweight ranking and we think surely this will motivate Mayweather to fight him. Yet, nothing ever comes of it and we continue to ask why.
Mayweather, for his part, has made the right decisions. And frankly, every single one of us when faced with the same choices would have made those same decisions. It is a simple matter of economics. Mayweather is smart. He has known for a long time that Oscar De La Hoya was quite literally the golden goose of the sport and we all thought he was crazy when he first proclaimed he could beat De La Hoya back when he was three weight classes below him. From that point on, Mayweather moved his career to make that fight.
Oscar De La Hoya is that rare anomaly in boxing that has the ability to draw the casual fan into the sport of boxing from the force of his persona and Olympic fame. A very good fighter, but never really considered to be the best fighter of his time or across the eras, De La Hoya has always been able to provide entertaining matchups whether he is completely outclassing his opponents or in a heated contest. A De La Hoya fight is a show worth watching and the fans always support him.
When another fighter faces De La Hoya, two things are certain. First, they will make a lot more money facing him than they will with any other opponent. They often make more money facing him then facing several other stellar opponents. Second, De La Hoya’s fame and notoriety will ensure that they too will gain the attention of a broad base of fans. If they perform well, their fan base will grow and they will continue to make more money in subsequent fights.