Did you see the Floyd Mayweather vs Manny Pacquiao press conference? Hopefully not, I did and I'd like that hour or so back. Please, someone find it and give it back to me! Media across the lands were hunting for a bit of angst and it's funny to see the headlines afterwards, obviously neither fighter or camp was going to talk shit so silly media folk were disappointed.
What was extremely interesting however were the dynamics of the press conference. This isn't just Mayweather vs Pacquaio, well maybe the fight will be but everything around the fight involves old men trying to wield their willies around. Pacquaio is signed to HBO while Mayweather has his much-discussed deal with Showtime, two competing companies. Heck even the hotels that both are linked to were in on the rivalry!
Quite a few people might look at the delays in making this fight happen being down to two different fighters and their opinions but I wouldn't mind betting that trying to get a deal worked out between HBO and Showtime would have been a key factor. The press conference was a complete bore, not because neither fighter talked any shit but because you had the two different sides hyping up their respective interests.
Pacquiao's chum Bob Arum wouldn't shut up about HBO, made sure that we all knew that Manny was having a great time at Mandalay Bay and that Manny had even sent a letter to the Indonesian prime minister/president/overlord requesting that a lady who was destined for execution along with the two Aussies be shown mercy. Apparently, Manny's letter was a success, I wonder how all of the Aussies and kiwis feel about that?
Showtime's exec tried to take the moral high ground, declaring that this fight wasn't about the sponsors and all the people taking a cut of the cash for not doing much, but about the fighters in response to Arum's rambling. Arum then basically copied and pasted that in response to those subliminal shots.
Boy oh boy, this shit just didn't stop. Some dude, the host or MC of the press conference was obviously getting paid by Mayweather so he threw a few shots as well. Until, the classic; 'this man needs no introduction .... cue 10 minutes of introduction'.
Before all of that you had the alphabet boys, no not the silly CIA, FBI, DEA fellows but the WBC, WBF WJKLOBBKS. Somehow they were all latinos and they had to get their two cents in as well.
All this utter bullshit only reminded me why boxing is struggling and why it's nearly impossible to follow it. Is this the fight of the century? Maybe, but that's because of the boxers and I'm not sure that there's many other boxers who can continue the momentum gained from this fight.
But hey, at least we got to listen to Jarryd Hayne speak. Hayne had his first presser with the San Francisco 49ers and when you got past the dumb questions from Australian journos, you got some extremely wise words from the mouth of Hayne. It's this wonderful combination of confidence and humility, he knows he's physically the man but he also knows how much work needs to be done. I really, really like it.
A sidenote from that is that the University of Hawaii is apparently sending scouts to Australia to scope out their talent, pretty much as a direct response to Hayne's move. Being from Aotearoa, I know how many talented athletes we have as well so I wouldn't mind seeing a university or and NFL team scope Aotearoa out as well. Will this take away our talented rugby and league players? Maybe, but it's also going to provide more and more guys with a different career path.
Speaking of American universities and colleges, big up big up to Sam Timmins who will be attending the University of Washington to play a bit of basketball. The 17 year old will join the Huskies next year and look to develop his game at a school that has produced a bunch of NBA players. The Huskies are a Division 1 school and played in the NCAA National Tournament 16 times but have more recently played in the National Invitational Tournament. Their current coach Lorenzo Romar has bee in charge since 2002 and led the Huskies to six NCAA tourny's since then.
Hopefully Timmins can not only improve as a player and work his way into NBA prospect material, but also improve the Huskies, which will also help his own development. The Huskies haven't played in any national tournament for the last two seasons so there's plenty of room for Timmins to help out.
Lydia Ko aye, what a champ. She's donated her winnings from the Swinging Skirts to a Nepal relief fund. How can you say anything negative about this or about her?
Can't we just let Richie McCaw be? McCaw will skipper the All Blacks up to the World Cup, through the World Cup and then retire off into the sunset. Nothing else will happen, so get over it.
Nathan Burns will have to lead the Wellington Phoenix on Sunday if they are to take care of Melbourne City in the A-League. Burns was awarded the Player Of The Year by the Football Media Association and also won a few awards at the Phoenix's awards dinner.
Martin Guptill continued his fine performances for Derbyshire as he finished 31 not out, leading them to victory of Gloucestershire. Guptill caught Hamish Marshall on 79 and finished with 4 catches for that innings before guiding Derbyshire to their target of 142.
James Franklin was waiting in the sheds for Middlesex and he then helped them to victory as both he and Australian Adam Voges hit centuries. They reached their target of 402, 5 wickets down with Franklin not out, how about that for some ANZAC spirit. A 3 wicket haul from Jeetan Patel helped Warwickshire toil away for a draw as they slowed Yorkshire down enough as they tried to chase down 352. Patel took 3/70 off 28 overs including the big scalp of Indian batsman Cheteshwar Pujara.
Pour some out/light one for Jon Jones...