As the readers of the site already know, singer Chris Brown will be facing Soulja Boy in a potential PPV celebrity-boxing match tentatively set for a date in March. Much of the culmination of the encounter has been already well documented, but a recent update late last week has made the matchup a bit more interesting. Heavyweight legend Mike Tyson has been appointed to corner Chris Brown, which of course means that the tutelage of Iron Mike will be going up against the tutelage of another one of the sports best technical minds, Floyd Mayweather Jr., who will be both promoting the fight and cornering Soulja Boy.
The initial announcement of the news came through a pair of Instagram announcements from 50 Cent, one that shows a phone conversation between the rapper and the fighter, where the former champ appears jovial at the idea of being involved. Tyson later confirmed his involvement late Sunday night through the same medium. Combine that with the mock fight poster that Mayweather put on his own Instagram, and we might be getting a preview into what will be a new platform of boxing promotion. Given the attention the fight has garnered so far, it’s certainly not too far-fetched.
The addition of Iron Mike does perhaps add a tinge of legitimacy to the matchup. As fight fans probably know, Mike Tyson is a boxing aficionado. He’s not even referenced as a former fighter by some experts any longer, but instead as a boxing historian. Much of this is due to the ridiculous amount of old footage he used to watch and boxing books he used to read when training with Cus D’amato. A single conversation with the man would probably make most rethink how much they actually knew about the sport.
In the other corner is Floyd Mayweather Jr., who despite all his controversial behavior outside of the ring is actually one of the best technicians the sport has ever seen. I don’t necessarily agree with most of his attitude. I despise the fact that he’s been jailed and convicted for domestic abuse. But the man can box and holds an elite mastery of the Sweet Science. No one can deny him that.
But would either of them make good trainers? Hard to say. Neither man has ever officially trained another fighter, nor do their own ring accomplishments necessarily transfer over to their coaching ability. The best one can do is perhaps to base a guess on their known personalities and knowledge. Who understands the sport better? Has a willingness to put others before them? Who has the greater patience or ability to explain how to do things rather than just do them?
When it comes to Mayweather and Tyson, both have their respective traits that work for and against them. Tyson might have the edge on boxing history, but Mayweather is closer to the recent developments of the sport. Mayweather has the better work ethic, but Tyson has lived more life, which has probably affords patience and a better understanding of the human struggle. In some ways, had both former legends taken up actual fighters to train in a serious boxing match, this could have given insight as to how great fighters transition into coaching, and perhaps a display of how well someone could transfer their own knowledge to another human being.
Unfortunately, this is a fight between two B-level celebrities that show no real pugilistic promise. Floating around the Internet is a brief clip showing the combatants’ respective fighting skill. Brown actually shows some decent form, but keeps his hands low and has the speed of someone wearing stone gloves, while Soulja Boy nearly toppled over himself while miming someone being attacked by a swarm of bees. There isn’t much hope for the bout to display any actual skill.
But I guess it’s better to contemplate how the two actual fighters involved would fair as trainers, even if the fight doesn’t really tell us anything pertaining to that question. Maybe just thinking about the subtle places of legitimacy will help us forget the ridiculousness of this fight, and perhaps the more troubling fact that this sort of thing is not all that unexpected in the world of boxing.
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