by Hans Olson
What we call the beginning is often the end.
And to make an end is to make a beginning.
The end is where we start from.
– T. S. Eliot
For Floyd Mayweather, 2011 brought not the end, but the beginning. The beginning of what is to be the rest of his career, the beginning of a new era, of a new presence. When he was sentenced to 90-days in jail late last year for misdemeanor battery domestic violence—which he will start serving on January 6—many looked at the sentencing as an end. In fact, it’s another beginning. In 2012, Floyd’s legal issues will soon be behind him, and the new year brings a new start.
Late last week, Floyd’s attorneys completed the second part of a plea deal (in an unrelated case to the aforementioned one above) that will enable Floyd to pay a $1,000 fine, avoiding trial and jail time. This was for a November 2010 altercation between Floyd and a homeowner association security guard over parking tickets. The plea acknowledged allegations that Floyd had poked the 21-year-old security guard in the face several during their argument in front of Floyd’s Las Vegas home.
With most of his legal issues close to being resolved, Floyd Mayweather will be able to focus entirely on boxing when he is released from jail. Police said good behavior could reduce the length of his jail term by several weeks, but his time behind bars still looks to certainly cut into training time for the May 5, 2012 date that had been set aside for Floyd against an opponent TBA at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. The date has not been cancelled as of yet, so it remains unclear if Floyd will indeed shorten his training regimen and go forward with the scheduled date.
The only lingering issues for Floyd involve his having to complete 40-hours of community service by January 31, 2012 with the Las Vegas Habitat for Humanity Project. This comes under a federal judge in South Carolina’s order for dodging a deposition in a music rights lawsuit. Lastly, he faces a civil lawsuit in Las Vegas from two men who say he orchestrated a shooting attack on them outside of a skating rink in 2009. Authorities have never accused Mayweather of firing shots, and he has never been charged criminally in that particular case.
When he is released, will the focus be there for Floyd in 2012?
One has to assume that it will be.
When Floyd returned to the ring in September of last year after having been out of action for the better part of 18 months, he returned with a certain vigor we hadn’t seen in a while. Floyd fought with razor sharp precision against Victor Ortiz, and even with the bout’s controversial ending, the high level he was able to compete at cannot be ignored.
Whether Floyd Mayweather fights on May 5 or later, many will expect the same electric performance out of Floyd that he delivered against Ortiz on September 17. With a new year, we may see a new Floyd Mayweather.
A new and improved Floyd Mayweather? I believe so…as scary as that sounds.
If we see it sooner or later, is the only question as of right now.
Boxing Insider’s Hans Olson can be reached at [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @hansolson