"That's news to us, but that's great to hear. Now hopefully the fans will finally get what they want to see. I'm sure that when he made these comments, all the members of the media that were on the call were just as pleased as we are to hear that. It's great to hear that they are now ready to take the same USADA random blood and urine tests that Floyd, Shane Mosley, and Victor Ortiz have already taken. This is great for the sport of boxing and I commend Manny Pacquiao for stepping up to the plate...Team Mayweather is looking to make the biggest fight possible and everyone knows what that fight is. It's very pleasing to know that Manny Pacquiao has agreed to be subjected to the USADA random blood and urine tests," stated Mayweather Promotions CEO Leonard Ellerbe, who discussed the possibility of a fight between Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao, assuming Pacquiao is victorious in his third and final fight with Juan Manuel Marquez. You do not want to miss what else Ellerbe he had to say as he touches on a number of subjects, including the success of Mayweather vs. Ortiz, recent comments made by Bob Arum, and much, much more. Check it out!
BT: L, congratulations on another successful promotion.
LE: Thank you. It was a wonderful promotion and Floyd really appreciates all the fans for continuing to support his fights. It was a great team effort by everyone associated with the event: HBO, Mayweather Promotions, Golden Boy Promotions, Swanson Communications, LS Productions, Team Mayweather and the Money Team. It's truly a blessing to be a part of history.
BT: Obviously the fight that everyone is going to be asking about is Mayweather vs. Pacquiao, but Bob Arum recently made some comments suggesting that the fight is never going to happen. Why do you think he would go on record and say that, accusing Floyd of being scared to fight Manny?
LE: It's absurd. He's just trying to promote his fighter in any way he can by using Floyd's name. In my opinion, the media should be insulted by his constant attempts to try and manipulate them into thinking that Floyd is afraid to fight his fighter, or anyone for that matter, by continuing to give misleading information, hoping that they will twist the perception of the fans. For example, look at what he said about Marquez when Floyd fought him compared to what he's saying about Marquez now. In 2009, Floyd returned after nearly two years of retirement and completely dominated Marquez, who most considered to be the #2 or #3 pound-for-pound fighter in the world. According to him, "Most journalists didn't give Marquez, and rightly so, any chance against Mayweather." Now, two years later, in my opinion, he wants to mislead the fans into thinking that "Marquez is a big test" for his fighter. Two years ago, he said Marquez had no chance against Floyd, but now, two years later, he's a big test for his fighter. I mean, which one is it?
He did the same thing with Shane Mosley. Immediately after Floyd had a phenomenal performance against Mosley, who everyone said was coming off of his best performance against Margarito, he said, "I thought it was sad to see Mosley, who is such a great fighter, suddenly get old." Then a year later, he referred to Mosley as "the most competitive guy of the three [Marquez, Berto, Mosley]" for his fighter. A year ago, he said Shane got old, then all of a sudden, he said Shane was the most competitive guy for his fighter. Like I said, which one is it?
BT: In the past, it seemed like the issue of drug testing was the only thing standing in the way, but recently, Manny Pacquiao suggested that he thinks the fight may not happen because Floyd is asking for too much money and the promoters can't afford to pay him. Given the manner in which Bob Arum has been touting the live gate sales for this fight with Marquez, and the pay-per-view numbers that they did with Mosley, do you think that perhaps he's trying to make the case that Pacquiao is a bigger draw and maybe deserves more money for the fight?
LE: Team Mayweather deals with the facts and the facts only. In America, the biggest attraction is always going to be the person who generates the most money. In Floyd's case, it's irrefutable who is the biggest star, the biggest draw, the biggest attraction, any way you want to frame it. Compare apples to apples, same venue, same opponents! Floyd has the bigger live gates, the bigger pay-per-view numbers and the bigger pay-per-view grosses. That's an irrefutable fact. For example, taking a look at the live gate grosses, we did $18.4 million with Oscar; they did $14.3 million. We did $11.1 million with Mosley; they did $8.8 million. For Ricky Hatton, we did $10.4 million and they did $8.8 million. The other fights that the little fellow had in Texas, he did $5.4 million with Margarito and $6.3 million with Clottey in a 100,000 seat stadium. We deal in facts. It's all factual. And there's no debate on who owns the top three highest-grossing non-heavyweight pay-per-view fights. Don't get me wrong, the little fellow has done some very, very good numbers, but Floyd has just done substantially better numbers.
BT: You know, earlier today, Bob Arum said during a conference call that Manny Pacquiao, for the past two years, has been willing to take the random, Olympic-style testing.
LE: That's news to us, but that's great to hear. Now hopefully the fans will finally get what they want to see. I'm sure that when he made these comments, all the members of the media that were on the call were just as pleased as we are to hear that. It's great to hear that they are now ready to take the same USADA random blood and urine tests that Floyd, Shane Mosley, and Victor Ortiz have already taken. This is great for the sport of boxing and I commend Manny Pacquiao for stepping up to the plate.
BT: Before you guys can even discuss making that fight a reality, Pacquiao will first have to get past Marquez, who he already had two close fights with. Do you think he might be in jeopardy of possibly losing this third fight?
LE: In my opinion, I don't think it's a very competitive fight at all. Marquez is past his prime. After Floyd easily dominated him two years ago, he's drastically declined since then. He was life or death with Juan Diaz and he was life or death with Katsidis before eventually stopping him. He gets hit with any and everything now. He's accomplished a great deal in his career and he's a great fighter, but he's on the other side of his career and he's taken a tremendous amount of punishment in his last couple of fights since fighting Floyd. That's a lot of wear and tear on his 38-year-old body.
BT: The question that all the fans really want to know is assuming Pacquiao does get past Marquez, will we now get a chance to see Mayweather vs. Pacquiao next?
LE: Team Mayweather is looking to make the biggest fight possible and everyone knows what that fight is. It's very pleasing to know that Manny Pacquiao has agreed to be subjected to the USADA random blood and urine tests.
BT: One last question, do you plan on watching the fight on November 12 (laughing)?
LE: (Laughing) You already know the answer to that question. Dana [White] is having a show on FOX and this will be the first time I've ever witnessed a UFC fight. They have a massive promotion that they've been running on FOX and I'll be tuning in to watch that.
CLICK HERE TO READ ABOUT FLOYD MAYWEATHER'S RETURN TO THE RING ON MAY 5, 2012
[ Follow Ben Thompson on Twitter @fighthype ]