LAS VEGAS — Only Floyd Mayweather, Jr., and Robert Guerrero can be in the ring Saturday to decide their fight for the WBC welterweight title.
But Friday afternoon’s weigh-in at the MGM Grand Garden Arena was very much a family affair.
Just minutes after it was announced Mayweather will earn a minimum of $32 million for Saturday’s bout — a guaranteed figure expected to swell to more than $50 million after the pay-per-view receipts are counted — Mayweather tipped the scales at 146 pounds. Guerrero, who will make a career-high $3 million, came in at the division limit of 147.
A capacity crowd of roughly 4,000 fans — with hundreds more denied admission waiting outside — was heavily in favor of Guerrero, who was a 5-to-1 underdog at the MGM Grand sports book on Friday.
After the fighters stepped off the scale and came together for the ceremonial staredown, tensions boiled over between Floyd Mayweather, Sr., and Ruben Guerrero, the fathers of both men who double as their trainers. The elder Guerrero had called Mayweather, Jr., a “woman beater” eight times during a screaming tirade at Wednesday’s final press conference, a reference to the champion’s two-month jail stint last year on a domestic violence charge.
Mayweather, Sr., pointed at the elder Guerrero and made a throat-slash gesture during the faceoff, while Guerrero motioned to his jaw and dared Mayweather to take a swing. After the fighters split, Ruben Guerrero took a Mexican flag and waved it toward the crowd, while the challenger jawed animatedly with two members of Mayweather’s entourage.
“I feel like the trainers should act their age and let the fighters do the fighting,” Mayweather, Jr., said afterward. “Of course, I come from a boxing family. It’s in my blood. It’s embedded in me. I’m going to go out there and do what I do best, and that’s be victorious.”
Said Guerrero, who did not back down from the gum-chomping Mayweather during the 45-second staredown before he was pulled away: “Nobody is intimidating me.”
This is Mayweather’s first fight at 147 pounds since a fourth-round knockout of Victor Ortiz on Sept. 17, 2011. He won a unanimous decision over Miguel Cotto at 154 pounds on May 5, 2012.
Daniel Ponce de Leon came in at 126 ahead of his WBC featherweight title defense against Abner Mares, who also weighed 126.
Leo Santa Cruz (122) and Alexander Munoz (121) both made weight for their junior featherweight fight.
– Bryan Armen Graham