The boxing world may be about to undergo a seismic change.
Rapper 50 Cent, who landed a New York promoter's license last week and has applied for one in Nevada, appears to be taking Floyd Mayweather Jr., the world's top boxer, with him to his new company, TMT Promotions. TMT is short for "The Money Team," the nickname Mayweather has given to his friends who work with him.
The musician got into a battle with Golden Boy Promotions president Oscar De La Hoya on Twitter on Wednesday, taunting the former world champion and referring to him as "baby girl."
Golden Boy has promoted Mayweather's last six fights, though it had never signed Mayweather to a promotional deal. Mayweather's company, Mayweather Promotions, does not have a promoter's license. As a result, it paid Golden Boy a flat fee to promote Mayweather's bouts.
The rapper, whose real name is Curtis Jackson, has had a long friendship with Mayweather. Jackson tweeted to De La Hoya at 8:38 p.m. ET on Wednesday, "@oscardelahoya I don't gamble floyd do,but I bet you won't be promoting Floyd mayweather no more. TMT PROMOTIONS" He followed that up 13 minutes later by writing, "@oscardelahoya sweet heart I'm surprised you would respond to me and Floyd starting the company the wayyou did."
Then, at 9:27 p.m. ET, he wrote, "Baby girl, @oscardelahoya, baby girl you here me, stop hating STOP IT RIGH NOW."
De La Hoya, who has since deleted all of his Tweets to Jackson, wrote, "@50cent your a boxing promoter? good luck maybe we can work someday. #success #nextgeneration #GBB #TMT"
That, though, did not go over well with 50 Cent. He tweeted twice in response, first writing "Classic," while including De La Hoya's tweet. Then, he wrote a separate tweet, saying, "Great back pedal,can you swim backwards like that to girl?lol I except that as a apology.#GBB #TMT more success a head."
Neither 50 Cent nor De La Hoya could be reached for comment. Mayweather is incarcerated at the Clark County Detention Center after pleading guilty to reduced domestic violence charges last year. He is tentatively scheduled to be released on Aug. 3.
Neither Golden Boy CEO Richard Schaefer nor Mayweather Promotions CEO Leonard Ellerbe returned messages seeking comment.
But if Jackson does promote Mayweather's fights without Golden Boy, it would be a massive power shift in the sport and a devastating blow to De La Hoya's company. Much of the leverage it had over the last several years with premium cable networks HBO and Showtime was because it worked closely with Mayweather. Mayweather is the sport's top draw, along with Manny Pacquiao, and whoever promotes him is instantly a significant player in the sport.
Jackson had noted last week that he planned to sign super featherweight Yuriorkis Gamboa and super middleweight Andre Dirrell to deals with TMT Promotions. Neither is an especially good draw, but there are none better than Mayweather and, for as long as he fights, he would give TMT Promotions a lot of clout in the industry and a big stage for its upcoming fighters.
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