What the pundits say

Floyd Mayweather vs. Logan Paul exhibition bout a ‘low blow for boxing’

Undefeated American will fight the YouTuber on 20 February

Floyd Mayweather will once again lace up his gloves and return to the boxing ring - this time for a “special exhibition” bout against YouTube star Logan Paul on 20 February.

Mayweather, 43, retired from professional boxing with an undefeated record of 50-0 and is “widely considered the greatest fighter of his generation”, says the Daily Mail

In 2017 the American beat MMA star Conor McGregor in a boxing match, then in 2018 he defeated Japanese kickboxer Tenshin Nasukawa after just 140 seconds in an exhibition which was worth a reported $9m (£6.7m). 

“Money” Mayweather’s fight against McGregor was “one of the richest bouts in boxing history”, says the BBC. And according to Forbes he was ranked the highest-paid sports star from 2010 to 2019 after raking in $915m (£698.3m) during the decade.

His next challenge, against the internet sensation, is expected to be another money-spinner for pay-per-view sales. It will be streamed live on Fanmio with PPV costing $24.99 (£18.80). 

Trash talk 

Paul, who has 22.6 million subscribers on YouTube, has fought twice previously - with both bouts against British social media personality KSI. The first fight, an amateur white-collar boxing match, ended in a majority draw. Then in his professional debut Paul lost the rematch. 

Despite his short fighting career Paul stoked the possibility of a bout against Mayweather after trash talking the boxing legend. Last month he warned he would “snap this f--ker in half”, TMZ Sports reported at the time. 

“Let me tell you this, if I caught Floyd in a real fight, street fight, whoop his ass! No question,” Paul said. “MMA? Octagon? Whoop his ass! The only place I think Floyd is safe obviously is the boxing ring, but to be honest, I don’t give a f*ck! I don’t give a f*ck! I would fight Floyd anytime, anywhere, any place. Doesn’t f*ckin’ matter to me.”

Now that Paul’s got his wish, the February fight is “going to make these guys a lot of money”, says The Athletic’s Mike Coppinger. With the trash talking starting even before the announcement was made, the lead-up to the exhibition has the potential to drive “a lot of people nuts”, Coppinger tweeted.

‘Boxing is no longer about talent’

While it will make a lot of money for the fighters, promoters and TV networks, there are many critics against the bout.

UFC president Dana White has been left less than impressed by the exhibition fight, the Mail reports. In a video posted on Twitter by Nelk Boys, White said: “When people ask me what’s the state of boxing right now, that’s where it’s at. Didn’t that kid get beat up by the f*****g video game kid from England and now he’s going to fight Floyd Mayweather?”

Yahoo combat columnist Kevin Iole says Mayweather vs. Paul is just another “low blow” to the boxing world. 

Iole wrote: “No thank you, Floyd Mayweather. Hard pass, Logan Paul. This is starting to turn boxing into a farce. Paul is a cruiserweight who will have roughly a 50-pound weight advantage. But he’ll have about as much of a chance of winning the fight as he would beating Usain Bolt in a 100-metre dash. 

“Mayweather and Paul are showing yet again that boxing is no longer about talent, training, conditioning and winning one’s fights. Rather, it’s name recognition and treading on celebrity.” 

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