COMMENTARY | It would appear that Brandon "Bam Bam" Rios has fired the first shot to officially confirm a feud with WBC lightweight champ, Adrien "The Problem" Broner.
"He thinks he's the next Mayweather. He ain't no Mayweather," Rios told Boxingscene. "It showed that night [against Gavin Rees]. With a little midget with no power hit him, and if that was Mayweather in that situation, that would never happen. So this motherf****r ain't no Mayweather. He's stupid.
"And he asks 'Brandon who?' If he don't know who the f**k I am then I think he's in the wrong sport because everybody knows who I am," Rios continued. "So it's kind of stupid for this guy to say that sh*t. He looked retarded for saying that....But you know what, I bet you anything if I go [up to him] face to face he won't say sh*t."
Compelling quotes and excellent copy to attract a few extra readers eager to gobble up the latest in boxing drama. Under normal circumstances, this could be seen as shrewd promotion to help hype a fight that could happen down the line as both 20-something fighters work their way to true star status.
Broner would fire back via his official Twitter account:
"look Lil dude I dont [sic] care what you talkin just keep winning I respect you as a fighter but don't talk sh*t fool I will crush U"
ZING! The war of words would appear to be on and fans all over the web have been buzzing about the new classic-in-the-making.
There´s just one little detail about this future mega-bout-- It'll never happen.
Top Rank's Rios and Golden Boy's Broner will likely develop into real elite-level fighters and they will populate the same sport, circling around the same weight class, and share headlines until one or the other is knocked off the main stage. But they'll never fight. At least not while Bob Arum calls the shots at Top Rank.
We've been through this before.
A division's two best fighters talk like they want to go to battle. They take baby steps toward one another. The fans explode in excitement, obsessed with what they may see. But no real steps are ever taken to actually sign this bout because the two stars in question just happen to belong to opposing sides of a promotional turf war. Instead, the fans are strung along for years, always teased with the fight they want, but given whatever second-rate bout is easiest to sign.
To put it another way-- Even if Broner were a traveling faith healer and Rios had a crippling case of scoliosis, Arum wouldn't let Broner lay hands on Rios.
It's not that he doesn't have faith in his fighter, it's just that it's good business to insist on holding all the cards by keeping everything "in house." And when it comes to a hated promotional rival and, perhaps, the even more hated manager of Adrien Broner and Floyd Mayweather, Al Haymon, there's added incentive to play "keep away" with certain fighters.
This is not to suggest that Golden Boy is innocent in this crippling turf war. It's a definite possibility that certain match-ups are proposed by the promotional company with the full understanding that Arum and Top Rank would never, ever go for the idea.
But, whatever the case, it's time for fans to stop kidding themselves about the realities of the sport these days.
Broner and Rios can trade all the mean-spirited barbs they like, but this social media flame war will be the closest they'll ever get to an actual fight. Unless fans want to relive the time wasted on Mayweather-Pacquiao hype or the fake Donaire-Mares narrative, they should bail on Broner-Rios right now. Forget about this potential classic and never look back.
Paul Magno was a licensed official in the state of Michoacan, Mexico and a close follower of the sport for more than thirty years. His work can also be found on Fox Sports and as Editor-in-Chief of The Boxing Tribune. In the past, Paul has done work for Inside Fights, The Queensberry Rules and Eastside Boxing. For breaking news, additional analysis, and assorted crazy commentary, follow him on Facebook, @TheBoxingTribune or on Twitter, @BoxingBTBC.Sources: Boxingscene, Twitter