Floyd Mayweather Jr. is a masterful self-promoter, but he is not necessarily known as a huge trash talker. Sure, he’ll trash talk plenty if it’s called for, but he has been pretty respectful of opponents in the past. Why is that? Because he hand picks his opponents and only fights guys he knows he can beat. Most of his trash talk is reserved for guys he’s really afraid of, like Manny Pacquiao.
Those following the buildup for Mayweather’s fight on Saturday against Canelo Alvarez know that Money hasn’t been bringing the trash talk. Aforementioned reasons have a lot to do with that — Mayweather just isn’t too worried about Canelo. But another reason he hasn’t been too vocal is simple logistics.
“The kid can’t speak English,” Mayweather explained to ESPN’s Tim Keown. “He wouldn’t know what I was saying anyway, so what’s the point?”
There’s more to it than just that. Mayweather has been able to accomplish something that few others can: he has mastered the art of making himself a villain without becoming a villain to his opponent. By being cocky, boastful, and unlikable, he gets fans to buy his fights because they want to see him knocked out. He doesn’t need to play off another person to sell a storyline; he sells himself.
The amazing part of Floyd’s plan is that it helps him disarm his opponents.
All of Floyd’s opponents are enjoying their biggest pay day and publicity rush they will ever have. How can they really be mad at Mayweather when the undefeated boxer is helping to build their career and lifetime savings? Mayweather is truly brilliant in this manner.
Alvarez was asked about Mayweather’s lack of trash talk leading up to their fight, and he offered an explanation.
“I think it’s because his other opponents want to talk trash. I respect everyone except when we get in the ring.”
When you have two guys being passive towards each other, there aren’t many fireworks. But none are needed; enough people want to watch Floyd fight to see if this will finally be the time he loses. And Canelo has so many Mexican fans who watch his fights, he already has a built-in audience. No phony trash talk has been needed for this one; it sells itself.