Leonard Ellerbe, the advisor for Floyd Mayweather, doesn’t tell it like it is because he can’t. It would be bad for business. He has to mislead and deceive in order to preserve Floyd Mayweather’s career which is already in decline. But what if Ellerbe did decide to be candid and real for a change? Here’s how that interview might go…
BoxingInsider: So Floyd really, truly wants the fight with Pacquiao?
Ellerbe: Hell no. There’s no chance that it happens. Not even if Arum takes 40-60. We know Pac is unbeatable now. Heck, we ducked Cotto last year. We didn’t even want to fight Cotto. To see what Pac did to Cotto – put it this way, the fight ain’t happening anytime soon.
BoxingInsider: Then why are you out there saying over and over, “Floyd wants the fight, Floyd has made it perfectly clear to us he wants the fight with Pacquiao?”
Ellerbe: Because we have to pretend we want to make the fight, just to make it look good. If we come out now and say we won’t fight Pac, we’ll be condemned by the fans, media and powers that be. But if we at least make it look good, pretend like we’re trying to make a deal, fake our way through the negotiation process, THEN back out at the end, we come out looking good. We can say, Hey we tried but couldn’t reach an acceptable deal because Bob Arum hates Floyd too much.
BoxingInsider: It’s obvious you’re using the tactic of keeping Floyd hidden now, keeping him under wraps. Why so?
Ellerbe: Yes. We can’t take the chance of putting Floyd out there now to discuss Pac. Floyd as you know is a horrible speaker under pressure, he is pathetic at the art of lying. Floyd simply cannot, calmly and persuasively, express his excuses and reasons to duck Pac. He can barely handle softball questions without coming across as a jackass. Brian Kenny and Rugged RA tore Floyd to bits and we cannot afford to have that happen again, least of all now. We just hide Floyd from the public till we end up rejecting the fight which will be in about two or three weeks, maybe around Christmas where it will be lost in the shuffle.
BoxingInsider: Then target Mosley?
Ellerbe: Well, not really. We’re playing the percentages with that move. We hope Shane loses to Berto which is 50-50. Then we won’t have to fight Berto because Haymon advises him. If Shane wins and wins big we can still duck and dodge him. If Shane looks old then yeah, we’ll pick him. But if Shane is spectacular we can always price ourself out of the fight. We’re pretending to target Shane now because it’s critically important we avoid Pac now – and Shane is the only acceptable option to use to duck Pac at this point. We can’t fake retire again. We ducked Shane after the Marquez fight but we need him now. Anything to ensure that we don’t have to put Floyd in the ring with Pac, which, as you know, would be suicide for us.
BoxingInsider: But a lot of people believe Floyd has the skills to beat Pac, why not just go for it, in the spirit of matching the best vs. the best. And the money is huge.
Ellerbe: Floyd is not a real fighter anymore, his skills and sharpness are declining with all the easy safe fights. He’s just pretending. He’s a celebrity now with ambitions on being an entertainer. Pac is a superhuman monster, a relentless, amazing, wrecking machine with blinding speed, power, unbreakable confidence and an unlimited arsenal of power punches which come from all angles. This boy don’t play. He brings it. Floyd can’t handle that. Floyd needs to set and control the pace to be effective with his counters and potshots. Floyd has grown used to boxing slow old small guys. He would get overwhelmed and mutilated by Pac, it’s a mismatch. Floyd is scared already, that’s why we have to duck Pac. Floyd would get battered and busted up by about six-seven rounds. We won’t ever let the public see Floyd get beaten up like that. Our whole charade would be over. Everything would be over. That’s why we’re the best team in boxing, we have the infrastructure set up where we can duck or dodge anyone any time. We did it with Margarito, Cotto, Shane and now we’re ducking Pac.
BoxingInsider: What if Arum and HBO offer you 40-40 and 20% extra to the winner? What if Arum agrees to accept 40-60?
Ellerbe: Listen. Give it up already. We are not taking the fight. Whatever we have to grab on to, to duck the fight we will. We’ll fake an injury or go to MMA or WWE, whatever it takes to duck Pac.
BoxingInsider: Ali, the biggest star in the history of sports, took 50-50 with Frazier and Foreman.
Ellerbe: Floyd is like a flea compared to Ali. Let’s leave it at that.
BoxingInsider: Is Floyd really his own boss?
Ellerbe: No. That’s just another facet of the charade. Floyd is just a puppet, a wanna-be superstar with delusions of grandeur, and we’re his handlers. Floyd is like a little child who never grew up. He falls apart mentally when he feels pressure. You saw how he looked talking to Margarito, when Larry Merchant asked him about fighting Cotto, when Shane challenged him after Marquez, when Brian Kenny and Rugged got a hold of him. Floyd is a puppet, a carefully packaged and manufactured product. He is no CEO, are you kidding me? Look how Philthy Rich Records turned out. That’s why Floyd needs me, Haymon, Shaefer and HBO to save his ass. Without us he’d have been eaten alive years ago.
BoxingInsider: But Floyd has been built up to be in the position he is now, he could be like an Ali, Leonard or Tyson, he can save the sport and set it up for a strong and bright future by fighting the best and giving the public the most exciting entertainment. Which is what the sport needs.
Ellerbe: I agree with you, to a degree. The problem is Floyd can’t overcome his cowardice in the face of real danger. He can’t handle dealing with extreme adversity like Cotto or Pac. Even with all his natural talent, he lacks the confidence and he falls apart mentally under duress. He can’t think or talk straight when he has to talk about Pac or Cotto. Keep in mind, I want to keep my job in boxing, I want to keep my paychecks coming. So I will do whatever it takes to protect Floyd from danger and keep him undefeated.
BoxingInsider: Now that it’s been established Pacquiao vs. Mayweather will not happen, can you share your true thoughts on Pacquiao as a man and a fighter? Instead of belittling him as just a “good little fighter.”
Ellerbe: I’m sorry that I have to discredit such an amazing, incredible champion like Manny Pacquiao like that, in order to build up Floyd. I love Manny Pacquiao, he is humble, respectful, a gentleman, a positive inspiration, generous, admired and beloved by fans the world over. In my opinion he is the epitome of what the ultimate sports champion should be. He is a natural born entertainer. As a boxer, he is a modern marvel, the most exciting and exhilarating and spectacular boxer I ever saw outside of Ali, Tyson and Leonard. Floyd does not have 1/10th of the class, charisma, personality and inspiration of Manny Pacquiao. I love Manny Pacquiao to death, believe it or not. Manny Pacquiao is everything Floyd wishes he could be. Frankly, we’re just pretending to be what Manny Pacquiao is. I wish I could work with such a man as Manny Pacquiao. But business is business and I work with Floyd now.
BoxingInsider: Hey, someday Floyd might quit on all this ducking and dodging and handpicking and maybe someday Floyd will find his courage and start fighting the best. Even if he loses, the public will respect him and love him for showing bravery.
Ellerbe: But it’s not gonna happen. I wish it would too, but trust me, I know Floyd and he will never take a risk like that. It’s something in his makeup. I try to tell him sometimes but he won’t listen. We can only tell him how great he is. If he only realized like Cotto and Lennox Lewis and Klitschko say, You learn so much more about yourself and life from a loss than a win. He just won’t listen. The little bastard just won’t listen. But that’s enough, I said enough already.
BoxingInsider: One more thing please. Do you think God doesn’t want Floyd to lose?
Ellerbe: Floyd was crazy to say that. Sometimes I think he’s losing his mind. His paranoia of getting knocked out is driving him mad. Floyd has been deformed by boxing, all the success, fame, money and power have ruined him. He used to be cool, nice. Like the saying goes, “The humble shall be exalted — and the exalted shall be humbled.” Floyd and Manny symbolize this. And we all know who’s who. That’s why we must avoid a fight with Manny Pacquiao at any and all costs.
Reminder: This spoof interview with Leonard Ellerbe never took place, it is pure fiction.
Scoop’s book “Heavyweight Armageddon: The Tyson-Lewis Championship Battle” was called “A smashing success,” Emanuel Steward, “One of the two best boxing books I ever read.”
Author of “Heavyweight Armageddon: The Tyson-Lewis Championship Battle” was called “A smashing success, one of the two best boxing books I ever read,” by Emanuel Steward.