LAS VEGAS – Oscar De La Hoya will have his third trainer in as many fights when he meets Manny Pacquiao on Dec. 6 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena.
De La Hoya said Floyd Mayweather Sr. won't train him for the Pacquiao fight. Mayweather Sr. recently was hired to train Ricky Hatton for his Nov. 22 fight against Paulie Malignaggi.
De La Hoya, who was in Las Vegas promoting Saturday's lightweight bout between Joel Casamayor and Juan Manuel Marquez, did not say who would be in his corner, noting, "We're going to go talk about that in a couple of hours." It is a good guess, though, that it will be Ignacio "Nacho" Beristain, who has long been regarded as the best trainer in Mexico and whom De La Hoya holds in high regard.
Mayweather Sr., reached by telephone in Biloxi, Miss., where he is preparing Joan Guzman to face Nate Campbell in a WBA-WBO lightweight title bout on Saturday, confirmed the split.
He intimated it was over money, but did not criticize De La Hoya.
"I respect Oscar and I did well with him," Mayweather said, "but he did really, really super well by having me around. Oscar got rich, rich, rich by working with me and I made what I made."
However, Mayweather Sr. said he doesn't believe De La Hoya will have trouble defeating Pacquiao, who won the WBC lightweight title in his last outing, June 28 in Las Vegas when he stopped David Diaz. It was his first fight at lightweight, but he'll be meeting De La Hoya at welterweight in December.
"I'll be honest with you," Mayweather Sr. said. "Nobody can do what I do. Don't get me wrong. But Oscar doesn't need me to beat Pacquiao. He really doesn't. For this fight, Oscar can beat Pacquiao with just about anyone training him. When he hits him with that first left hook, it's all going to be over. Ain't no way Pacquiao can beat Oscar. No way.
"So, I'll be honest, Oscar doesn't need to pay the price to get me in this fight, because he'll win this with me or without me."
Freddie Roach, who trained De La Hoya in his split-decision loss to Floyd Mayweather Jr. on May 5, 2007, will work for Pacquiao on Dec. 6. Mayweather Sr. trained De La Hoya on May 3, when he defeated Steve Forbes in Carson, Calif.
De La Hoya's new trainer, presumably Beristain, will be with him when he fights Pacquiao, the top-ranked fighter in the Yahoo! Sports pound-for-pound rankings.
"Floyd Sr. has obligations with Ricky Hatton," De La Hoya said. "Am I disappointed? Absolutely, I'm very disappointed. I respect Floyd Sr. very much. I respect him as a person and as a trainer. Obviously, the door is always wide open for Floyd Sr., because I truly feel that Floyd Sr. can take me, after every single fight, to a whole new level."
De La Hoya said Mayweather Sr. did not choose to work with Hatton over him. He said it was uncertain whether he would fight again and said Mayweather needed to find work.
"I blame myself for not letting people know if I was going to fight," De La Hoya said. "He had already made commitments and he had already signed contracts with Hatton before I (decided to fight). I don't blame him for doing that, because he has to make a living. I would put the blame on me."
- Oscar De La Hoya
- Manny Pacquiao
- Ricky Hatton