The Floyd Mayweather vs Tenshin Nasukawa has already had more drama than most exhibition bouts experience in the run-up to the fight. It all started on November 5th when RIZIN Fighting Federation announced a surprise press conference. No one had any idea what it was about but reporters decided to show up to the event to see what was in store. To boxing and MMA fans alike Floyd Mayweather was there and RIZIN announced that Mayweather and Nasukawa would have a bout. Mayweather was initially excited about the partnership and the event.
Mayweather said, “I want to continue coming over here and bringing other fighters over here so my company can continue to grow and RIZIN can continue to grow. I would love to continue to work with RIZIN because RIZIN is an unbelievable company, and my company, we’ve been making some huge fights happen in the US, but we look forward to taking the Mayweather Promotions banner and the TMT banner worldwide. And if it takes working with a great guy like this, there’s no problem.”
But, after the event there was some confusion in Mayweather’s camp on what the fight was going to be. There were reports that the fight was now canceled as there was a large misunderstanding between the two groups. The two camps originally did not understand what the fight was going to be as both sides and the media were confused. Thankfully, RIZIN called Mayweather and his team to clarify the bout and discuss what would occur on New Year’s Eve.
“I went over there and there happened to be a huge press conference,” Mayweather said. “I didn’t want to throw a lot of my people under the bus. So I basically told them, ‘this isn’t going to work out’. There’s no official fight. It’s an exhibition. A small, nine-minute exhibition. No kicking. It’s going to be the highest paid exhibition ever. Just for promoting this event I’ve made seven figures. It’s a no-brainer. Just because I’m retired, I still make appearances around the world and make a ton of money.”
It is very impressive that Mayweather was able to receive over $1 million by just showing up to the press conference and that RIZIN is promising tens of millions of dollars to the undefeated fighter. The move could be vital for the RIZIN as they make their brand more well-known worldwide and create a long-term relationship with Mayweather that would benefit both promotion companies.
The fight will go ahead as planned and hopefully it will be an entertaining bout. Do not expect the highest level of boxing from the event as Mayweather has already touted the event as an exhibition and not as an official fight. It would be interesting to compare the duo’s training regimen in the lead up to the exhibition. Boxing fans should be on the lookout for HBO’s famous 24/7 series to see if they will be covering the run-up to the exhibition.