"Since the Margarito fight, Pacquiao has been on the decline. You saw the decline in Pacquiao with the Bradley fight and with the third Marquez fight and the Shane Mosley fight. Every fight after that Margarito fight was nothing. It was nothing to even be excited about anymore. It's one of those things where you can actually see it happening; leading up to this fight, you can see it happening. But just because Marquez had never even dropped Pacquiao leading up into this fight, you couldn't prepare yourself for what was going to happen. But at the same time, the decline of Pacquiao has been evident. It's shown itself 3 or 4 fights ago; it showed itself. And in my opinion, this fight exposed him for what he really is now. He's not the same fighter and he hasn't been the same fighter for a long time," stated world-class trainer Jeff Mayweather, who shared his thoughts on Manny Pacquiao, Juan Manuel Marquez, Roy Nelson, King Mo, what to look for in 2013, and much more.
PC: How is everything going Jeff?
JM: Everything is going good.
PC: Congratulations on Roy Nelson's knockout win over Matt Mitrione. What did you think of his performance?
JM: I thought that Roy it was kind of what I expected, but he's getting a whole lot better with his hands. Not only that, I mean, I think that he's got pretty good speed too. People are going to start seeing more and more that he's getting a lot better with his boxing skills.
PC: It's nice when you see a mixed martial artist make that transition and start progressing in his boxing. You have been working a lot with King Mo as well. Are you seeing those same progressions with him?
JM: Oh yeah! I mean, it's a lot easier for Mo because Mo already has a boxing mindset. And for Roy, don't get me wrong, see Roy has a fighter's mentality and not necessarily a boxer's mentality. He just wants to fight, but now he is fighting with a whole different vigor because he's fighting with a lot more technique, precision, and it's not just about the overhand right no more. You gotta look for a whole lot more than just the overhand right with Roy now.
PC: You always worked combination punching since the day you got with Roy. It showed in the Mitrione fight. Is he putting things together like you want him to be as far as his combinations go?
JM: Oh yeah, definitely, because the thing is Roy is 250 pounds, or close to it, and I have Roy every single round throwing well over 500 punches; it's non-stop. The reason why he can get in so many punches is because of the fact that I have him throwing as much as 15-punch combinations. One thing that I like about Roy is he challenges himself. The harder I push him, the harder he will fight to stick with me. And the thing with me also, they always say that MMA guys don't run and all that. I don't know what they do, but I just know that when Roy is with me, he's gonna be forced to push himself no matter what, whether he is running or not. He's going to get in shape from muscle memory. Its non-stop combinations when me and him get to working. There is a very low lull in action between me and him because it's constant. I try to keep pushing him, and like I said, well over 500 punches a round, and we even got as high as 618. He threw 618 punches in a 5-minute round period. So that's definitely pushing yourself and it's something that you can't do unless you're pushing yourself.
PC: Moving on to boxing, of course I gotta tackle Marquez knocking Pacquiao out first. What were your thoughts on the fight, and of course your thoughts on Pacquiao being knocked out?
JM: Nobody really saw the knockout coming. There were a few people that did say that that would happen, but very, very few. I mean, Marquez won 3 of the 4 fights anyways. I think to win in that fashion is a statement all in itself. This time around, he didn't need the judges and there was no chance of him being cheated. He made a great statement for himself.
PC: Are you interested in a fifth fight between those two guys?
JM: The thing is this, who cares? To be honest, the only reason there has been as many fights as they have had is because Pacquiao really didn't win those fights. It was basically Pacquiao trying to prove that he was the better fighter. He was trying to prove a statement, because if you already beat this guy 2 times and had a draw with him, you don't need to fight him no more. Since every time you fought him it was controversial, you did have to keep fighting him. Either yourself or your team or somebody that was involved with Pacquiao had to have doubt that he was winning those fights. That's the only way that those fights could have kept taking place. Right now, for the fight to happen, I don't know, it's one of those fights I think everybody will still spend their money to watch because everybody wants to see a good fight. Whether it ends the same way or goes the distance again, it's gonna be one of those fights. But me myself personally, I don't care to see it no more, but I think fight fans will pay to see it.
PC: The fights definitely live up to the billing. You're just saying enough is enough.
JM: Right. There is no point in it to me. But at the same time, it's one of those situations where they can still make good money because of the history of their fights; they can still make good money. And maybe now they don't want to take a risk of Pacquiao fighting anybody else that maybe can derail this series with Marquez and make him want to retire all together. The most money on the table for Pacquiao is going to be Marquez now because nobody wanna see him fight Floyd anymore. The Pactards, or whatever they call themselves, PacManiacs, of course they gonna want him to fight Floyd if he got knocked out again and again. That's how stupid they are. At the end of the day, the value of the fight is gone, so stop talking about what Pacquiao can do and Pacquiao this and that. Floyd fought Marquez off of almost a two year layoff and played with him like he was in high school. And not to say just because he did that to Marquez, because styles make fights, but at the same time, what people fail to realize is this, Pacquiao got beat by Marquez because Marquez is a counter puncher. And Floyd is probably two or three times better than Marquez at that job. Even Freddie Roach said, "Oh, he has trouble with counter punchers." If he has trouble with counter punchers, what the hell is he gonna have with Floyd, the best counter puncher in the world? It's asinine. He just has his fans that are diehard fans, just like I still know fans today that don't believe that Mike Tyson ever lost a fight. Even though we saw him on the canvas more than once, but because they are diehard fans, they just don't believe it, and that's what we are seeing with Pacquiao. He has those type of fans that, no matter what happens to him, they are still gonna be his fans and they still think he is gonna have a chance to beat whoever. But I mean, it's over with. That whole thing is over with because the one thing that his fans and everyone else have seen in this, even his true fans, they've seen that since the Margarito fight, Pacquiao has been on the decline. You saw the decline in Pacquiao with the Bradley fight and with the third Marquez fight and the Shane Mosley fight. Every fight after that Margarito fight was nothing. It was nothing to even be excited about anymore. It's one of those things where you can actually see it happening; leading up to this fight, you can see it happening. But just because Marquez had never even dropped Pacquiao leading up into this fight, you couldn't prepare yourself for what was going to happen. But at the same time, the decline of Pacquiao has been evident. It's shown itself 3 or 4 fights ago; it showed itself. And in my opinion, this fight exposed him for what he really is now. He's not the same fighter and he hasn't been the same fighter for a long time.
PC: What sticks out the most in your mind from 2012?
JM: There are a few things that stick out this year. I think Broner has become the breakout fighter this year. He put himself out there to become a star in the sport of boxing. you have Austin Trout, who actually made himself I still won't say he made himself marketable because there is still nothing to him, even with his win over Cotto. I put it this way, he made himself probably the guy that nobody wants to fight. He probably put himself in that position. There are a few things that happened. What amazes me from this year is now all of a sudden since Marquez knocked out Pacquiao, there is the issue of drug testing. When Floyd said it, he was scared to death and that was the only reason why he was doing it. Now all of a sudden since Pacquiao got knocked out now, it's become an issue. Even Jim Lampley is talking about it and he's a broadcaster. That's not his job. When everybody said Pacquiao was doing it, it was taboo. You couldn't even talk about it. It was almost like you can't even say that about Pacquiao. No way! But yet here it is, indirectly without saying it, you're saying it about Marquez.
PC: Lampley may have been indirect, but at one point, I was thinking Larry Merchant is about to get himself into a defamation lawsuit the way he was accusing Marquez of being on something.
JM: Yeah! That's ridiculous. Don't say that because this is the guy that you guys chose and now he got knocked out and all of a sudden it is an issue. But when he was knocking everyone out, it wasn't an issue at all. As a matter of fact, it was almost like a hands off subject. You say something about it and here comes the lawsuits and everything else. And now that he got his ass knocked out, now all of a sudden everybody on HBO's broadcast team wants random drug testing. Well wait a second isn't that what the fuck Floyd said a long time ago? They praising Nonito Donaire for subjecting himself to the year round testing like it isn't something that Floyd already said 2 years ago. One thing people don't realize is that will be something Floyd is remembered by. That's gonna be attached to Floyd well after his career is over with. It's gonna become like a trivia question. Who started this random drug testing stuff and that answer is going to be Floyd Mayweather. It's just like when you look back and you think about boxing and you ask who changed boxing and became the first guy to start this catchweight stuff? Sugar Ray Leonard when he won two titles in one night. How can you win two titles in two divisions in one night? You can only win one title. You created a new weight class, but you took a title in a higher weight class. I remember it because Roger was on that card too. Roger fought Pazienza that night when Ray Leonard fought Donny Lalonde, The Golden Boy. You attach that to Ray Leonard because Ray Leonard was the first guy to say, "Wait a minute! This guy is too big for me. We gonna fight at 168. I'm gonna make his ass drain himself to get to my weight because I'm the money. I'm the guy with the money and the name, so he's going to do what I ask him to do." And so he drained the guy and then he knocked him out; the same shit that Manny does. Manny is supposed to be an 8-division world champion. How when most of his fights were at catchweights? That's a joke.
PC: I'm sure you will have a big 2013. Best of luck to you. Is there anything you want to add before I let you go?
JM: Oh yeah, definitely, man. Right now, I'm working with King Mo, trying to get him ready, and I got a couple of young guys getting ready to get their professional career started. I feel that all of the younger guys that I have got a bright future ahead of 'em, so we are turning them pro. I got a lot lined up. I got a good young fighter out of Australia; he is going to be moving to the States here to train with me, and of course I think that it's going to be a big year for me in MMA as well. Because of Roy and because of Mo of course mainly because of Mo because he has put my name out there so much and I keep getting calls from various fighters and things like that. I think it's going to be a big year here; bigger and better for me in MMA and boxing as well.
[ Follow Percy Crawford on Twitter @MrLouis1ana ]