Manny Pacquiao and Joshua Clottey were standing underneath the world's largest high-definition video display in the world's largest domed stadium.
All eyes were focused squarely on them and they knew it. So they smiled gleefully...at each other.
It was a refreshing display of humanity between two fighters who were announcing their upcoming boxing match that's scheduled to take place at the opulent new Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas on March 13.
A date that was originally reserved for Floyd Mayweather Jr. to face Manny Pacquiao at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.
But most people know how those obnoxiously inhumane fight negotiations ended up.
Rather than agreeing to fight the Filipino icon who's won championships in seven different weight divisions, Mayweather decided that the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to stage the biggest event in the history of boxing would instead be an excellent time for him to pull down his pants and take a crap.
So he did.
He crapped all over Pacquiao, the sport of boxing, the Nevada State Athletic Commission, the numerous fans who have faithfully supported his career since he first won the National Gold Gloves in 1993, and everyone else in between.
And he seemed to enjoy it.
And now there is crap everywhere .
That's why it's so refreshing that Joshua Clottey is going to be Pacquiao's next opponent.
The fighter, also known as "The Hitter," is everything that Mayweather is not; he's dignified, respectful, aggressive, courageous, and willing to actually square up and fight.
He's the perfect selection to stand in the corner opposite of Pacquiao on March 13 and attempt to clean up the mess that's been left by Mayweather.
Born in the Republic of Ghana and now fighting out of the Bronx in New York, Clottey is 35-3 with 20 knockouts. All three of his defeats are also somewhat controversial:
In 1999, Clottey was disqualified against Carlos Baldomir in the 11th round for head-butting after previously being warned by the referee to stop. At the time he was ahead comfortably on all three of the judge's scorecards.
In 2006, Clottey lost unanimously to Antonio Margarito. But Margarito was later found with illegal plaster in his hand wraps before fighting against another opponent, casting a shadow of doubt on all of his previous victories.
And in 2009, Clottey lost via split-decision in a close, hard-fought battle with Miguel Cotto. Many people watching the fight live think it should have been scored a draw or a split-decision victory in favor of Clottey.
All in all, it's not that difficult to recognize how formidable of an opponent Clottey is for the naturally smaller Pacquiao. He's a legitimate welterweight that's never fought below 140 and he has never been knocked out.
If Pacquiao plans on extending his record to 51-3-2, it's quite apparent that he has his work cut out for him. On the bright side though, I don't think he's going to have to worry about any more crap storms precariously rolling in over the horizon.
Clottey seems ready and willing to put a stop to that immediately.
So from here on out I think we can expect forecasters to call for mostly sunny days with occasional smile storms opening up over the skies, something the sport of boxing can certainly use more of at this point in time.
I'm sure Pacquiao and Clottey will be more than happy to oblige—they seem to enjoy the positive energy.*
Author : Kevin Riley
Source : bleacherreport.com
Source : bleacherreport.com