Floyd Mayweather: WBC Champion Status Reeks of GreedWritten by Lee Cleveland
Floyd Mayweather, currently the WBC welterweight and WBA 'super' light-middleweight champion, should have been stripped of his WBC strap months ago.
The 35 year old Mayweather, the best pound-for-pound fighter in the world, won the WBC Welterweight Title by knocking out Victor Ortiz on September 17, 2011.
Nearly 13 months have passed and Floyd Mayweather has yet to defend that belt. Keep in mind, his bout with Miguel Cotto was contested at jr middleweight, seven pounds north of welterweight.
WBC Rule 1.21 a states: All WBC recognized champions must defend their title at least two (2) times a year.
If Selcuk Aydin had won the title then failed to defend it after 13 months, do you think the WBC would be so tolerable?
Forget about 13 months, he'd likely be stripped after six. But the WBC Welterweight Champion isn't SelcukAydin, its Floyd Mayweather.
Pictured: Floyd Mayweather vs Victor Ortiz Fight Poster. On Sept 17, 2011, Mayweather knocked out Ortiz to win the WBC Welterweight Title
So how is Floyd able to keep his WBC strap and champion status without following the organization's rules?
Perhaps its because of the high revenue his bouts generate? Organizations such as the WBC, IBF and WBA impose sanctioning fees for their bouts which are determined by a percentage of the competing fighters' purses.
How much are sanctioning fees?
For the WBA, it's 3% of both fighters' purses. It that doesn't seem like much, consider Mayweather's purses.
For a base purse of $22.5 Million USD, the sanctioning fee for Floyd Mayweather, alone, would be $675,000 USD (522,041 EUR/420,691 GBP)
We dont know the purse percentage(s) the WBC uses to determine its sanctioning fee but can surmise its close to the WBA's if not greater
So is Mayweather's title really in jeopardy? Probably not.
Given Mayweather has eclipsed the aforementioned base in his last two bouts, its not surprising the WBC is excessively "bending the rules" to keep him as its welterweight champion.
The problem is: The WBC's actions are blatant.
Allowing a cash cow and boxing legend like Floyd Mayweather to 'color outside the lines' a bit is certainly understandable... But its already been 13 months and he has yet to defend his title once nor line-up a bout (as of Oct. 11).
The WBC is a business and while its reasoning can clearly be understood, its actions do nothing to help the sport and only provide legitimacy to the claims of those who say boxing is corrupt.
Organizations like the WBC, and pretty much every other sanctioning body, don't realize they'll acquire more respect and revenue long-term by making the right decisions today and enhancing its image and credibility over time. But instead, they're always looking for the short term payoff versus planting the seeds for success and prosperity in the future.
Lee is Managing Editor of FightSaga.com, a student of the Sweet Science and longtime boxing fan.
A gym rat in the 1990s, Lee was trained by 1976 Olympic Silver Medalist Charles Mooney and several retired seasoned pros. He was also a sparring partner for former WBA Super Middleweight Champion Steve Little who upset Michael Nunn for the WBA Super Middleweight Title in '94.
Lee created FightSaga.com to honor and preserve boxing's rich heritage, chronicle the achievements of top fighters, celebrate the legacy of big fights and provide a fun, educational experience for fight fans.