Stephen A Smith: ‘I’m Going to Root for the Brother’ in Mayweather- Pacquiao Fight

On Friday, on the eve of the much-ballyhooed boxing match between Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao in Las Vegas, NV, an unapologetic Stephen A. Smith explained why he was pulling for Mayweather to emerge as the victor on Saturday.

Smith, from a live on-location set in Las Vegas told his “First Take” audience Mayweather’s origin had a lot to do with why he wanted that outcome.

“[A]t every turn somebody has looked to diminish the level of greatness that this man has displayed and I’m telling you for me, I’m not going to — a lot of people apologize for this, I am not,” Smith said. “In this particular instance I’m going to root for the brother. I’m not apologizing for that. I’m not apologizing for that.”

“Manny Pacquiao and this is a lesson for everybody else, too,” he continued. “If you are from a different community, if you are Mexican, if you’re Puerto Rican, Latino overall, Dominican, it doesn’t matter. If you have somebody from your crib, your hood you want to root – there’s no crime in that. I love Manny Pacquiao, great person, great fighter, the whole bit. But he is from the Philippines and everybody treats him better than Floyd. I’m going like this, as a boxer, as a boxer, wait a minute, he’s not Floyd. In the ring he’s never been Floyd and he ain’t going to be Floyd tomorrow night and I’m not apologizing for that.”

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