Floyd Mayweather against Manny Pacquaio would be the richest fight in boxing history and the man who will play a large part in making it happen, Jeff Mayweather, will be at the Odyssey Arena on Saturday night plotting the downfall of unbeaten heavyweight Tyson Fury.
Mayweather, the uncle and former manager of incarcerated superstar Floyd jnr, was a good professional in his own right and now he trains 15 fighters at his base in Las Vegas, including Kevin Kingpin Johnson who faces Fury in what has been confirmed as an official WBC World heavyweight title eliminator.
Both fighters know that the winner will take a giant step towards a shot at either Vitali or Wladimir Klitschko, the two Ukrainian brothers who rule the heavyweight division. Mayweather, in much more considered tones than older brother Floyd snr, has no doubt it will be Johnson who has already been the distance with WBC champion Vitali.
“I never saw Tyson Fury fight but I heard him in an interview and he was talking like he’s the best thing since sliced cheese but when I then went and watched him he’s not even close to anything like that. He’s just a big guy, a very big guy and a guy that size creates problems but skills? He don’t have none,” said Mayweather
“His skills are extremely limited, he’s big, he’s clumsy, but he’s a big guy and that always presents a problem but very big and very slow and methodical and most guys he’s going to beat because of his physical size but Kevin has too much experience for a guy like Tyson Fury.
“He has too many skills, Kevin’s going to be very hard to find and if he’s going to be throwing big shots he’s going to be throwing away energy and if he throws away enough energy and if he gets tired early in the fight he’s not going to finish the fight and I think that Kevin has a great chance of stopping him.
“But we’re in his country so we have to perform to a higher level. But I have tremendous belief in Kevin and Kevin has tremendous belief himself.
“What Tyson Fury says and what he puts out there is totally different to what he does in the ring. He has been dropped by really small guys that haven’t fought anybody so his opposition has been weak.”
As for Fury’s hopes of wrenching a version of the World heavyweight title away from either Klitschko brother in 2013, Mayweather is equally dismissive of his hopes.
“As long as one of the Klitschkos have their hands on a belt Tyson Fury is never going to be world champion,” said Mayweather, who admits that Johnson didn’t do enough in his clash with Vitali three years ago.
“Kevin didn’t have a bad performance, he got into the bravado thing ‘oh you can’t hurt me’ making Vitali miss but he wasn’t working, you gotta work.. but this ain’t no Klitschko so if he can do that with him then he should be able to do it with this guy because I’m just being honest, I don’t think much of Tyson Fury.”
In between preparing Johnson he is working behind the scenes on helping to put in place the groundwork for nephew Floyd to face Pacquaio, as long as he defeats Juan Manuel Marquez next month. Mayweather’s pride in Floyd is very evident, describing him as “the best fighter to ever lace on a pair of gloves”.
“When Floyd was about six years old everybody in our family knew he was special and that one day he would win Olympic gold and thought he would win multi world titles. All these things people are seeing now he was doing as a kid.
“It’s not just that he is blessed, you gotta have a teacher… you have gifts from God but a lot of people think that instincts can’t be taught, they can be taught. If you do something long enough it becomes an instinct and that’s what people don’t realise. When Floyd was a kid he would point and say look at that crazy kid running behind his dad’s car because his dad wanted to watch him doing his running and he was running for three or four miles… look where that crazy kid is now.
“I don’t understand why people think Floyd is afraid of Pacquaio because Pacquaio’s not on the same level. It will take time but if Pacquaio wins then it can happen. Pacquaio has to win, if he doesn’t that kills the fight.”