Las Vegas, NV – Mayweather Boxing Center is in a small, unassuming western part of Las Vegas in the heart of Chinatown. Not on well-established streets like Tropicana, Flamingo, or even Desert Inn. How about Schiff Drive? No?
I had to Google it too.
The no-frills warehouse holds two full-size boxing rings under low wooden ceilings. Two sets of fighters go about the business of what appeared to be routine workouts in each ring. The place is well-vented and not as musky as one could easily imagine with the amount of activity found every couple of square feet. The sounds of heavy bags being pummeled fill the north side of the gym. There’s remarkably little traditional workout equipment to be seen; a small set of dumbbells on one wall and a couple of core-strengthening apparatuses on another. A pure boxing gym.
Framed pictures of Floyd Mayweather Jr (45-0, 26 knockouts) battling Ricky Hatton in the ring line the south wall. Others feature the gym’s namesake with multiple championship belts draped over him. I counted five in one picture. Promotional posters of past fights – all victories of course – hang in no particular order high on the walls.
It wasn’t somewhere you’d expect the world’s highest paid athlete to call his office but sure enough, on Media Day at MBC, throngs of reporters waited hours for the patriarch of “The Money Team” – as Mayweather’s camp is not so subtlety known – to appear.
Mayweather calmly, and thoughtfully, answered every question, granted every interview and took a generous amount of time ensuring that the sound-bite-starved media got what they came for. He praised the extensive efforts of the marketing machine that’s promoting his upcoming welterweight bout with Marcos Maidana (35-3, 31 knockouts).
The 37-year old Mayweather is putting his undefeated record and WBC belt on the line as he faces a younger, (Maidaina is 30) hard-hitting opponent who’s knocked out over 80% of his opponents.
Mayweather’s last eight fights have yielded over eleven million Pay Per Views. And with a solid undercard next Saturday featuring Amir Khan vs. Luis Collazo and Adrien Broner vs. Carlos Molina, one can almost hear the gears of Mayweather’s money machine cranking up in anticipation of another cash windfall May 3rd at the MGM Grand Garden Arena; where the frills, absent on media day in a little gym off Wynn Rd and Schiff Drive, will be on full display.