Floyd Mayweather Jr and WBA welterweight champion Shane Mosley got too close for comfort in their first pre-fight press conference in New York last night.
It was their first meeting in what is a whistle stop three city promotional tour ahead of their May mega-fight. The pair hit Washington today and Los Angeles tomorrow.
The two squared off face to face and after an exchange of insults started jostling each other before their respective entourages jumped in and pulled them apart. Although there does seem to be genuine bad blood between the two, anyone hoping for the kind of free-for-all that happened at the notorious Mike Tyson-Lennox Lewis press conference in January 2002 might have been disappointed. This was more hand bags at ten paces.
“Our noses touched,” Mayweather said. “I don’t like nothing but the ladies. I don’t mind the trash talking but he grabbed my hands. I said, ‘Don’t put your hands on me.’ I pushed him away.”
Mayweather (40-0, 25) who turned 33 last week, couldn’t resist a dig at Mosley´s connection to Golden Boy, the promotional company run by boxing great Oscar De La Hoya, in which Shane Mosley is a partner.
“He fought Oscar twice, now he works for Oscar,” Mayweather said.
“But only I make 40 million in 30 minutes. I gave 30 years of my life to my sport, to boxing. All roads lead to Floyd Mayweather. Oscar, Zab Judah and now Mosley…they all get their biggest paydays against Mayweather.”
38 year old Mosley (46-5, 39) just seemed grateful to be involved in such a prestigious fight at this stage of his career.
“It’s been a long time since I got a chance to show the world that I’m the best fighter, and that’s all that I really want, to be the best,” Mosley said.
“I’m going to take my hat off to Mayweather, because I didn’t think I was ever going to get a fight from any of these top fighters. He said, ‘Yeah man, I’ll take that challenge. I’ll fight you.”‘
The last word came from Oscar himself;
“This fight reminds me of back in the days of Sugar Ray Leonard and Tommy Hearns, the fights we saw back in the day, the classic fights that brought boxing back.” said. De La Hoya.
The pair will get it on for real on May 1st at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.
Big Fight odds update; Mayweather 1/3, Mosley 9/4