- Kevin Iole at Yahoo Sports6 hrs ago
LAS VEGAS – Friday, for the first time in the more than 10 years since he founded Golden Boy Promotions, Oscar De La Hoya seemed engaged, aware and in charge of what was going on with his company.
In the early days, he was seemingly content to defer to his onetime manager, Richard Schaefer, whom he appointed as Golden Boy's first and only CEO.
De La Hoya was an active boxer and though he'd invested a great deal of money in founding and operating Golden Boy, he seemed content to play a more secondary role.
After his career ended with a drubbing at the hands of Manny Pacquiao in 2008, De La Hoya frequently would say that he'd want to be in charge, but his actions rarely matched his words.
He had a drug and alcohol problem, as it turned out, and wasn't really capable of having a meaningful impact upon his company.
He made his first public appearance in July after leaving a rehabilitation center, and held a news conference in which he said all the right things. Still, it came off scripted and he didn't seem fully aware of the complex issues facing him with Schaefer no longer with the company.
- Kevin Iole at Yahoo Sports2 days ago
LAS VEGAS – Floyd Mayweather's nose was swollen and his lips were busted up. He seemed low key and subdued, even after yet another dominant performance.
The week was filled with unwanted controversies and distractions. He was dogged about domestic violence incidents in his past and ripped about thoughtless comments he made about Ray Rice.
The work of promoting a major fight had clearly taken a toll on him. And, he's moving inexorably toward his 38th birthday.
Love him or loathe him, you can't deny him.
Mayweather once again proved he's far and away the best fighter in the world by routing Marcos Maidana on Saturday before 16,144 at the MGM Grand Garden, retaining the WBC welterweight and super welterweight titles with a unanimous decision.
- Kevin Iole at Yahoo Sports4 days ago
Rarely has a sports star at the top of his profession for as long as Fedor Emelianenko remained so relatively anonymous.
The notoriously private Russian reached a mythical status among MMA fans by the mid-point of the 2000s, but remained an enigma to even the most tuned-in among them.
Michael Schiavello, the longtime MMA broadcaster, discovered that as he was preparing for an hour-long interview with Emelianenko that will air Sept. 19 at 10 p.m. ET on AXS TV on his series, "The Voice Versus." He spent nearly a month preparing for the interview and still wasn't able to come up with much.
"The fact that so many people consider Fedor the greatest mixed martial arts fighter ever, or at least one of the top five, and he's such a major figure in this sport and in its history and yet he's still shrouded in such mystery and intrigue was compelling to me," Schiavello said. "The longest interview with him I could find was only about 10 or 12 minutes.
- Kevin Iole at Yahoo Sports4 days ago
LAS VEGAS – The question was innocent, harmless, but Floyd Mayweather Sr. reacted as if his manhood had been challenged.
"C'mon, man," he said in that slow, high-pitched tone he uses when he's exasperated. "Get out of here with that."
He sort of laughed. It was hard to tell if he was angry, or amused that he'd been asked his prediction for his son's bout Saturday at the MGM Grand Garden against Marcos Maidana.
Mayweather Jr. will risk his WBC welterweight and super welterweight titles and, most importantly, his perfect 46-0 record, in a rematch against the man who gave him one of the hardest fights of his career.
The fight is on pay-per-view at the hefty price of $74.95 for high definition. It hasn't been a great time to sell a bout. A few weeks ago, hip-hop artist Curtis Jackson, whose stage name is 50 Cent, questioned Mayweather Jr.'s ability to read. Last week, Mayweather Jr.’s former fiancée, Shantel Jackson, sued him, alleging, among other things, assault, battery and defamation.
- Kevin Iole at Yahoo Sports5 days ago
Antonio "Big Foot" Silva was not the first UFC fighter to test positive for elevated levels of testosterone.
And you'd have to be a complete fool to believe he's going to be the last.
Silva is like virtually every one of the dozens, perhaps hundreds by now, of fighters who failed a post-fight drug test. It wasn't, he said, his fault. And he wasn't trying to cheat.
He did cheat, mind you, but talk to him and he'll insist that it wasn't his intention.
It never is, is it?
Silva's failure tarnished what should have been one of the most special moments in UFC history. His Dec. 7, 2013, fight in Brisbane, Australia, with Mark Hunt, which was scored a majority draw, was everything fight fans want a match to be: There was tremendous punishment delivered, non-stop action, plenty of drama and frequent swings of momentum.
A pair of mid-level fighters – both entered the fight coming off losses, and Silva was just 2-3 in his last five – showed the kind of bravery, determination, guts and effort that makes lifelong fight fans and makes the athletes legends.
- Kevin Iole at Yahoo Sports5 days ago
LAS VEGAS – As 1999 dawned, 21-year-old Floyd Mayweather Jr. sat atop the Ring Magazine ratings in the super featherweight division.
Mayweather won his first world championship in stunning fashion on Oct. 3, 1998, when he utterly destroyed Genaro Hernandez to win the WBC championship.
Hernandez was one of the best and most respected fighters in the game and was unbeaten at 130 pounds going into the fight.
That Mayweather won wasn't that unexpected; he was a 1996 Olympic bronze medalist and for years, experts had raved about his ability as one of the sport's top prospects.
But it was the manner in which he completely shut down Hernandez that opened eyes. Hernandez was never in the fight. Offensively and defensively, Mayweather overwhelmed him.
Only three weeks after Mayweather won the first of his many world titles, a 24-year-old from Oxnard, Calif., made the first successful defense of the IBF 130-pound title he'd won months earlier.
Robert Garcia, then known as "Grandpa," knocked out Ramon Ledon in the fifth round on Oct. 24, 1998, in Atlantic City, N.J. Garcia opened 1999 as Ring's third-rated 130-pounder.
- Kevin Iole at Cagewriter5 days ago
LAS VEGAS – For the time being, Dana White is the world champion.
He is, at least, according to Palms Resort Casino president Todd Greenberg. White has been so successful playing blackjack at the Palms that he was first banned by the hotel and then, after returning to gamble there, asked to dramatically cut the amount that he wagers per hand.
White declined and took his gambling action elsewhere.
It ordinarily wouldn't be much of a story, except that when White was banned the first time, Palms employees nearly revolted. White is a legendarily good tipper and employees were upset that he was let go. Several Vegas sources said it wasn't uncommon for White to have a $10,000 meal at the Palms' trendy steakhouse, then drop a $10,000 tip on top of it.
In part to assuage employees, White was allowed to return to gamble at the Palms in March. But after a big hot streak that lasted into June, the Palms cut the amount White could play per hand.
- Kevin Iole at Boxing5 days ago
LAS VEGAS -- It's rare anyone lays a glove on Floyd Mayweather, but the world's best pound-for-pound boxer took a beating on Wednesday. This time, though, it wasn't from a fellow boxer in the ring, but from boxing media criticizing him for comments he'd made earlier about former Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice.
Near the end of an approximately half-hour session Tuesday in a lounge off the main lobby at the MGM Grand, Mayweather was asked his opinion of the video that surfaced showing Rice knocking out his then-fiancee, Janay, with a left hook in an elevator in Atlantic City, N.J.
Mayweather never expressed remorse that Janay Rice was knocked unconscious and instead said the NFL should have kept Rice's suspension at two games. When a reporter said the video of the Rice incident was disturbing, Mayweather seemingly dismissed it.
- Kevin Iole at Yahoo Sports6 days ago
LAS VEGAS – Kelly Swanson, Floyd Mayweather Jr.'s estimable, longtime publicist, was seated, quite literally, on the edge of her seat as Mayweather spoke with a small group of media Tuesday at the MGM Grand.
For half an hour, the session slogged on uneventfully. Mayweather, who defends his WBC welterweight and super welterweight title belts on Saturday in a Showtime pay-per-view rematch against Marcos Maidana at the MGM Grand Garden, said little of consequence.
He seemed distracted, almost bored. There weren't the outbursts of emotion he'd so famously made in similar sessions in the same room in years past.
Asked if he still planned to retire when he completes the three fights remaining on his Showtime contract, Mayweather said probably.
That became news, though when he added that he feels differently about the topic every day, it was largely ignored.
- Kevin Iole at Yahoo Sports7 days ago
For several years, Pat Barry has bragged to anyone who would listen about his girlfriend, Rose Namajunas.
After a UFC victory over Shane del Rosario in a heavyweight fight in 2012, Barry recounted his first meeting with Namajunas, which occurred at Roufusport Mixed Martial Arts Academy in Milwaukee.
The 245-pound Barry found himself sparring with the 115-pound Namajunas. Before Barry could get ready, Namajunas belted him in the face.
"I walked over and I was like, 'Hi, I'll just take it easy,' and, 'Boom!' she hit me in the face," Barry told Yahoo Sports in 2012. "She hit me and I was like, 'What the [expletive] was that? How do you hit that hard?' So I say to myself, 'OK, maybe that was a fluke.' And then, 'Boom!' again, this time with the right hand. And I'm like, 'Oh my God! I love you.' She hit me, with the big glove on, so fast and so hard, I could smell iron. I could taste iron. I felt like I'd just licked the refrigerator.