10. Better Late Than Never
There are many reasons behind boxing’s gradual decline, but one pertinent factor is that, unlike in virtually any other sport, the best fighters are not duty-bound to square off against one another.
The proliferation of alphabet organisations with varying degrees of credibility makes it almost impossible for your average sports fan to deduce who the main men really are. There’s simply no obligation for a champion in one weight class to face a direct rival unless the dollars make sense.
So it is that a fight between Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao has been earmarked for six years now, with final confirmation that the May 2 bout would go ahead only arriving ten weeks ago.
Why did it take so long for the two best boxers in the sport to finally agree to fight one another? The main sticking point in the protracted, tedious negotiations was Mayweather’s insistence that Pacquiao submit to unprecedented random drug testing, and ‘Money’ Mayweather also aggressively pursued a larger slice of the financial pie and several other concessions.
The American’s legal troubles that saw him spend two months in prison sentence for domestic battery in 2012 and Pacquiao’s devastating knockout defeat at the hands of Juan Manuel Marquez in the same year were also stumbling blocks. Still, as the saying goes, better late than never.