LAS VEGAS - Floyd Mayweather, Jr. may seem cold to mediamen, but it is actually through them that he's keeping tab of the goings on in the Manny Pacquiao camp in the run-up to their much-awaited fight.
A source from Mayweather camp told Spin.ph that the outspoken fighter has assigned different staffers to go over every bit of news stories about Pacquiao and his preparations for a fight billed as the richest in boxing history.
No wonder the undefeated American isn't too fond of the Philippine media.
“Yes, he’s been reading all of your news. And if you notice, his team is somewhat cold to Filipino writers. He’s read some of the worst write-ups against him,” said the source.
“He’s scanning it. He’s reading them all and he is taking down notes (of the stories, writers and publications),” said the source.
True enough, even Pacquiao’s former conditioning coach Alex Ariza, who is now with Mayweather, refused to give interviews to Filipino writers in this gambling capital.
“Sorry guys but I have to clear it up with Floyd. I can’t just talk to you. Sorry,” said Ariza when approached by Filipino scribes during Mayweather’s grand parade at the MGM Arena.
“We can talk here. But no stories, no tapes, no cameras,” said the American trainer who would even ask the names of the Filipino mediaman who would approach him before talking to them.
Ariza later on agreed to do a short interview with Spin.ph wherein he stressed that the focus on the fight should be between Pacquiao and Mayweather, and not between him and his former fighter.
True or not, Mayweather may get little information through the Philippine media.
Long before starting Pacquiao's training camp, longtime trainer Freddie Roach has already made a request for mediamen not to reveal pertinent details about the Filipino boxer's training, sparring and strategy.
He also conducted most of Pacquiao's training behind closed doors.
Though they try to look nice to each other during press conferences and media appearances, insiders from both camps insist the deep hatred Pacquiao and Mayweather have for each other has not waned.
Pacquiao’s publicist, Fred Sternburg, said after the Pacquiao camp succeeded in convincing Mayweather to take the fight, it no longer has any motivation to say anything bad against the American champion.
“I think Manny wanted the fight. Those comments you heard leading up to it was to try and get Mayweather to bite the hook, which obviously he did for a lot of different reasons,” said Sternburg.
“But I think the subplot is that it is going to be a great fight. They’re competitors at the highest level, both want to win and both usually do. So it should be a great fight,” said Sternburg.
Asked about Mayweather's unusually subdued behavior in the weeks before the fight, Sternburg looked unconvinced.
“That’s a good question. I have no idea why. He is certainly not working the way Mayweather normally works. It’s a good story line, I don’t know why he’s doing it. I am curious about it. It’s different and everyone’s noticing it,” he said.
Watch the video of the interview with Sternburg: