Floyd Mayweather, prize fighting’s king of prizes, has dumped Oscar De La Hoya’s Golden Boy Promotions. The move comes in the immediate aftermath of chief executive officer Richard Schaefer’s resignation from the company.
“After more than 10 years with Golden Boy, it is time to move on to the next chapter of my career,” the only CEO Golden Boy has known said in a statement yesterday. “This decision has required a great deal of personal reflection, but ultimately I concluded that I have no choice but to leave. I have succeeded in banking and I have succeeded in boxing, and I look forward to the next opportunity.”
Mayweather’s confidante Leonard Ellerbe told ESPN’s Dan Raphael that the undefeated fighter will promote his own fights without the help of Golden Boy and will work with Schaefer to do so. Mayweather just finished the third fight in a six-fight, $200 million contract with Showtime.
De La Hoya, who wins induction into the Boxing Hall of Fame this weekend, lost both his biggest cash cow and his CEO on Monday. In the process, Mayweather may land the fight the fans have been clamoring for. Mayweather’s longtime promoter had feuded with Manny Pacquiao promoter Bob Arum for years. This grudge, Mayweather’s money and drug testing demands thrust upon his potential opponent, and the fact that the two fighters compete on different pay channels has prevented a bout between the era’s best fighters. Pacquiao’s contract with HBO expires at the end of this year.
Money and Golden Boy long enjoyed a mutually-beneficial relationship. In 2007, Mayweather bested De La Hoya in a split decision that set the all-time pay-per-view record at 2.5 million buys. Last year, Golden Boy promoted Mayweather’s match with Canelo Alvarez that attracted 2.2 million buys, second on the all-time list. The welterweight’s May 3 fight with the unheralded Marcos Maidana generated a disappointing 900,000 buys–the second time in three fights he has failed to exceed 1 million buys–which puts pressure on Mayweather to make matches with marquee fighters, i.e., Manny Pacquiao or Amir Khan.
Mayweather, who last month defeated Maidana in a close decision, fights an undetermined opponent on September 13.