The barbs are flying this week.
Here is a collection of some of the more poignant comments we have seen in the media. We will do a part 2 later this week.
Manny Pacquiao: “What we are doing in training is very good because we’re not focusing on one strategy. We’re working on two or three strategies. Either way, if he wants to fight me that’s good for me and if he wants to move around the ring I’m ready for that”
Floyd Mayweather Sr: “It’s not a strategy, it’s not a plan, it’s nothing. He’s just a normal opponent who is going to get his ass whipped. In a situation like this we take it serious. If I see somebody say he’s going to whup me, I’m going to take it serious. He is totally prepared and we’re going to make sure we run Pacquiao out of this town.”
Manny Pacquiao: “I cannot say he is the most dangerous opponent of my career because I have not faced him. I have faced Oscar De La Hoya, Miguel Cotto, Juan Manuel Marquez and other great boxers.
Floyd Mayweather: “He comes at different angles so we’ll just have to see, I just know he will be facing a solid, strong welterweight.”
Manny Pacquiao: “If he wants to fight me, good for me, If he’s running and moving around the ring, we’re prepared for that, too.”
Alex Ariza: Floyd Mayweather Coach: “If I was training you, and I got you from division to division to division, and from weight class to weight class to weight class, and now you know I’m training your opponent, and I’m training him the same way I trained you, you ask me would that bother you? Whether you want to believe it or you don’t, Manny knows exactly what we brought to that table.”
Manny Pacquiao: “My confidence right now is different than any other fight I’ve had. I feel excited and I have to prove something. I like being the underdog, because my killer instinct and my focus are there.
Floyd Mayweather: “I don’t have anything negative to say about Manny Pacquiao or Freddie Roach. People from different teams can say things, but when it comes down to it, it comes down to the two fighters. I don’t focus on all the festivities going on. I just focus on being the best that I can be and doing what I’m supposed to do in the gym. I don’t ever say that ‘this is my toughest fight’ or ‘this is my easiest’ fight. I feel like he is a competitor and anything can happen in the sport of boxing. I always want to go out there and be at my best.”
Freddie Roach: “I learned a lot from Floyd’s fight with Oscar De La Hoya. I thought he won the first six rounds and then lost track of the strategy. We learned a lot about how Floyd sets traps and Manny recognizes how he sets trap. He won’t fall into it ever and Manny knows exactly what to do in every situation”
Manny Pacquiao: “Don’t get nervous, I’m excited and 100% confident. Any time I am underdog, I like that. It means my killer instinct and focus is fully there. Other people are getting nervous for me but I am excited. This is the moment I believe he will experience his first loss.”
Floyd Mayweather: “People have criticized me for being a defensive fighter, but last night when I was at home sitting with my mother and my daughter, I thought to myself ‘I’m proud of myself.’ To be in a sport for 19 years, the main thing is I’m going to get out of the sport and still have a sharp mind.
Manny Pacquiao: “This is one of the most important fights for my boxing legacy. I want to make this fight a good result for my legacy. I want to win, that is my goal. “I believe this is the right time for us to be fighting. More people are informed for this fight than ever before. People who aren’t even boxing fans are interested in this fight.
Bob Arum: “I am supremely confident that Manny Pacquiao will not only beat Mayweather but will beat him up and may very well knock him out”
Floyd Mayweather: “One thing everybody plans for is to come forward and throw a lot of punches. They think it works, but it hasn’t worked in 19 years. If that’s his game plan, then we’ll just have to see how everything breaks down. Pacquiao would be a better fighter if he wasn’t so reckless. It’s a gift and a curse. He’s won a lot of fights by being reckless. But also being reckless can get you knocked out. Getting knocked out in a harsh way can affect you in the long run.”
Manny Pacquiao: “I’m different than the first 47 he fought. I’m faster than them and I’m very confident for the fight. This is the moment that I believe he will experience a loss. I think we can win a decision. I always trust the commission, the judges and the officials. Our focus is not just on looking for a knockout but throwing a lot of punches in case it comes to a decision.
Manny Pacquiao: “I have not changed in my body in the last five years. I think the changes are that I have more experience now, better strategy and smarter movement. The speed and power has not changed”
Freddie Roach: “From the first day this fight was announced, I’ve seen a different attitude in Manny. He has really taken his training to a new level. He is very motivated and I love what I see every day.”
Manny Pacquiao: “When I started fighting in America in 2001, no one knew who I was. Now, everyone knows Manny Pacquiao. A lot has changed since 2001. I am not only working for myself, but I work to help other people and to be an inspiration. I am very grateful for the overwhelming support of the fans for this fight.”
Floyd Mayweather: “I don’t think one fight defines my career. All 47 fights played a major key. The bar is always set high for Floyd Mayweather. I think if we turn the table and if I had gotten knocked out by Marquez this fight would have never happened.
Freddie Roach: “I think we can win a decision. We can outpoint him no problem. Manny is definitely ready for this fight, we’ve had a great strategy. We’ve actually really worked on this fight together. Manny took me into his room many times to dissect tape on Mayweather and how he fights against certain people. This is the first time he has ever asked me to watch film with him. I liked what he showed me on the tape and I think that we’re perfect for this fight”
Floyd Mayweather: “I’ve broken records before. Are we going to do record-breaking numbers again? Absolutely.”
Nick Bogdanovich, William Hill U.S: “This fight is a once in 25 or 30 years type of deal. The money (wagered) supports that … Everyone will have a ticket on them, whether its $20 or $100,000. We expect it to be crazy on Friday and Saturday.”
Floyd Mayweather: “Financially, I don’t think Top Rank treated him right for this fight, I’m just saying, I don’t really know his (purse) number — I kind of know his number, but I don’t, They said that, from what I hear, the money will be wired to him. You hear different things like that. But I don’t have anything against Bob. They run their business the way they run their business, I run my business the way I run my business.”
Ken Hershman, president of HBO Sports: “Given what we are seeing in the early ordering part is that this will be a very, very successful night”
Floyd Mayweather: “At the end of the day, I know what goes on behind the scenes in the sport of boxing,” Mayweather said. “Just like Saturday. You’ll see the difference in the paydays.” (Mlive)
Oscar De La Hoya: “It’s sometimes unfortunate that (Floyd’s) mentality is I’m undefeated and I’m going to think I’m the greatest because nobody has beaten me. It just doesn’t work that way. You have to dare to be great and when you are to be great you’re going to face the toughest challenges. People are going to see that and people are going to respect that.”
Floyd Mayweather: “I’m glad I was flashy and outspoken when I was younger. But I’m close to the big 4-0. I don’t have to bash anyone. I know what I can do. Today I was thinking about how thankful I am for my fans. I’m so thankful for my fans. Every day when I’m training at the gym, there’s 200 or 300 fans waiting out there for me. Saturday, before and after the fight, I will still be The Best Ever. One fight doesn’t define my career. The great thing about my career is that I’m a smart businessman. A 19-year career with no punishment on the body, that’s what we should talk about.”
Triple H (WWE Legend): “His success as a boxer comes from knowing what really sells tickets is entertainment. You can be a great boxer and win a lot of fights and still have nobody really care about you that much. I think he gets that. “We’ve even talked about it a little bit. He’s not afraid to play the bad guy and push the buttons of the people who are going to pay to see him fight. He’s a smart guy. He’s created this persona that has driven people crazy. They can’t wait to see him get beat. To me, one of the coolest things was to sit and listen to his Uncle Roger talking game plan with him, while he was warming up, and then watching him execute exactly what they discussed.”
Manny Pacquiao: “Five years ago this was a $50 million fight for me and $20 million for him”
Leonard Ellerbe, Mayweather Promotions: “The turning point for the fight being made was when Floyd Mayweather met Manny Pacquiao and looked him in his eyes and said ‘I want to fight you”
Erik Newman, Deputy Clark County Fire Chief: “I think we’ll have the most millionaires and billionaires in one place in the country”
Tim Jeffery, MGM’s vice president of security: “We’ll have a higher-than-usual number of security employees, and that’ll be really obvious to anybody that’s visiting the property”
Bob Arum: “Vegas has seen plenty of weeks like this. But in the days of Hagler-Hearns, they didn’t have enough hotel rooms and people weren’t coming to Vegas unless they had tickets for the fight. Now thousands of people, maybe upwards of 100,000 people, will come to Vegas just to be on the scene”
Kelly Swanson, Floyd Mayweather Publicist: “ESPN told me they were going to treat this like the Super Bowl”
Bob Arum: “Floyd has megalomania, he believes that because of his accomplishments he rules everything he surveys and [can] do what he pleases. I think the overwhelming support of the American people is to Manny Pacquiao because of the kind of person he is. I think Americans really respect a religious man, a God-fearing man who really and truly believes in those principles. I am supremely confident that Manny Pacquiao will not only beat Mayweather but will beat him up and may very well knock him out.”