Mayweather's jail time may scuttle mega-fight: analysts


Posted at Dec 22 2011 04:03 PM | Updated as of Dec 23 2011 10:10 PM

MANILA, Philippines -- A potential mega-fight between pound-for-pound kings Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather Jr. is once again in jeopardy after the latter was sentenced to 90 days in jail by a Las Vegas judge.

Las Vegas Justice of the Peace Melissa Saragosa sentenced Mayweather to 90 days in jail after he entered a guilty plea on a domestic violence charge. He is also required to pay a $2,500 fine, attend a domestic violence class and perform 100 hours of community service.

According to analysts from ESPN and Yahoo! Sports, Mayweather's jail time means he will be unable to fight on May 5, 2012.

Mayweather had already declared that he plans to fight on May 5 next year, potentially against fellow pound-for-pound king Pacquiao.

Pacquiao confirmed that there were ongoing negotiations with Mayweather's team, but any such discussions maybe put on the backburner after Mayweather was sentenced to jail.

Mayweather is required to report to the Clark County Detention Center on January 6.

According to Kevin Iole of Yahoo! Sports, that means Mayweather will be released on April 2, giving him only a little over a month to prepare for a May 5 fight date.

"A top-level boxer needs a training camp of at least 8 weeks - and frequently 10 to 12 weeks - to prepare for a major bout such as one against Pacquiao," Iole said.

Dan Rafael of ESPN said "there won't be a May fight (for Mayweather)."

"That means that if a fight with Pacquiao ever happens... it won't happen until next fall at the earliest," he added.

Effects of jail time

Iole and Rafael agree that spending time in jail will not be beneficial for Mayweather's ring skills, especially since he will turn 35 years old on February 24.

"It is not uncommon for boxers to serve long jail stints and then come out and be successful in the ring once again," Iole said, citing the case of former heavyweight champion Mike Tyson, who served 3 years in jail but became champion again after he was released.

"But Mayweather... will be at a much more advanced age. Tyson was 26 when he was released in prison. Mayweather, who will be 35 upon his release, is a fighter who relies greatly upon speed, quickness and timing," he added.

"Speed and quickness often decline in boxers once they reach their mid-30s, but the effects of imprisonment may accelerate that."

Rafael, for his part, said jail time will mean that Mayweather is running out of time to make the fight with Pacquiao, while they are still at their prime.

According to Iole, with a Mayweather mega-fight out of the picture, Pacquiao may end up facing either Juan Manuel Marquez or Timothy Bradley next year.

Negotiations for a Pacquiao-Mayweather mega-fight have broken down numerous times over the past two years, over various issues including random blood and urine testing and purse split.

But the two sides have reportedly started talking again, with Pacquiao's adviser Michael Koncz even visiting Mayweather at his Las Vegas gym.

Top Rank chief executive officer Bob Arum, Pacquiao's promoter, declined to comment on Mayweather's sentence.

Golden Boy CEO Richard Schaefer, who helps Mayweather co-promote his fights, also did not comment. -- With a report from Reuters.