Floyd Mayweather

I heard Floyd Mayweather, a prizefighter, interviewed on “Weekend Edition Saturday” this morning and was very impressed.

I’ve met a few prizefighters in my life, including both Rocky Marciano and Rocky Graziano. I’ve also known quite a few boxers who didn’t make a career of it, but had attitudes favoring the sport, as well as quite a few fans who loved boxing and probably imagined or dreamed of being in the ring themselves. Recently, I met an older, retired prizefighter who said he’d get back into the ring.  He had fists like sledgehammers and an abdomen tough as a telephone pole.

But Mayweather said something you rarely hear from other fighters, which is that he intended never to get hurt, never to take a blow to the head. If he can block any punch, I suppose he can do it. And he insists on pre-fight drug testing. No drugs for him or anybody he meets.

It’s a refreshing attitude to hear in the sport, that it’s an athletic contest rather than the settling of a grudge, or a spectacle in which viewers can expect to see a lot of trauma being inflicted on mortals, some of it irreparable.

I get the impression that that’s the sort of brutality ice hockey fans, roller derby aficionados, and demolition derby viewers look forward to.

When pro football rules against unnecessary roughness and unsportsmanlike conduct, that’s the sort of thing that makes them mad and makes me feel good.

I hope Mayweather wins in Las Vegas this May.


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