Floyd Mayweather (above) insists he won’t split a title bout purse evenly with boxing’s No. 1 pound-for-pound king Manny Pacquiao.  (Getty Images)

Feb. 28, 2012

Contributed to the Filipino Reporter

Five days after his off-ring rival took Manhattan and held the New York media captive, this time it was Floyd Mayweather’s turn to invade the Big Apple.

Mayweather sat in a makeshift throne in the famous Apollo Theater amid a mixture of boos and cheers from a large number of fans gathered here in Harlem.

And he just sat there, smiling.

His big, dark sunglasses cannot hide the delight in his eyes.

And why not, if he can attract this number of fans here for just a mere press conference, what more come fight night.

The other best boxer in the world not named Manny Pacquiao is clearly enjoying this moment.

Mayweather is in the city to promote his upcoming fight with Puerto Rican junior welterweight champ, Miguel Cotto.

An alternative to what could have been boxing’s biggest fight in years against Pacquiao, after negotiations with the Filipino champion failed for the third time.

And just like how Pacquiao was asked more questions regarding Mayweather instead of his June 9 opponent in Timothy Bradley, Mayweather was peppered with questions other than Cotto.

It is clear that the subject of interest for Mayweather was the much talked about non-fight with Pacquiao.

But the similarities between the two end there.

While Pacquiao was as always, gracious, humble and non-confrontational in the manner he answered questions regarding his rival.

Mayweather was the total opposite of Pacquiao.

Armed with his trademark swagger and bravado, Mayweather  belittled and criticized the Filipino champ in front of the national media gathered around him in Harlem.

He blamed him as the reason the “mega fight” is not happening this spring.

He once again questioned Pacquiao’s legacy as he challenged him to yet again “take the test.”

One that does not carry much weight nowadays, given that Pacquiao has already agreed on all of Mayweather’s demand regarding blood testing.

He diminished Pacquiao’s win over Cotto more than two years ago, implying Cotto was a drained fighter when he lost to Pacquiao in 2009.

Cotto lost his WBO welterweight title by way of a 12 round TKO to Pacquiao in a fight contracted below the maximum 147 pound limit.

“I want to fight the best Miguel Cotto. I don’t want to fight you at a catch weight,” said Mayweather with obvious intentions at taking a swipe at Pacquiao.

But the swipes do not end there.

Mayweather belittled Pacquiao, calling him less than smart when he made a comment regarding their recent phone conversation last month.

“Just by speaking to Pacquiao on the phone, I mean he’s not one of the sharpest knives in the drawer,” Mayweather opined.

“He faces Floyd Mayweather, he’s not getting 50-50. Not at all. No one is getting 50-50,” he stressed.

Mayweather was referring to Pacquiao’s demand that they split even the income that will be derived from pay per view sales of this fight.

A demand Mayweather has consistently denied Pacquiao.

“If I offered him $30 million, he should be happy,” Mayweather continued.

“If I offered him $30 million and I didn’t give money on the back end, why should I? He’s with Arum right now and they are having problems. It’s obvious he must not be getting money on the back end.”

Pacquiao last week cannot hide his disappointment about not having a fair share of what could be well be boxing’s biggest blockbuster in decades.

He just shook his head when he narrated his phone conversation with Mayweather.

Pacquiao even sent his adviser Michael Koncz to America to try to renegotiate with Mayweather.

“As a matter of fact, the final offer that Manny gave was even better than that. Because after Manny talked with him on the phone, he gave me instructions to go back (America) and the final offer that was given to Floyd was a $50 million guarantee and a split of the revenue be 45-55. Manny says let’s make it a prize fight. So the winner will get a prize, an extra 10 percent, and it didn’t work,” said Koncz.

And then Mayweather talked about Miguel Cotto, which is why we are here in the first place.

“The Puerto Rican boxing background is truly amazing. A lot of great champions come from Puerto Rico. You guys have got another great champion in Miguel Cotto, tough, strong, solid 154 pounder,” said Mayweather.

“To be the best, you’ve got to beat the best and he’s one of the best fighters out there,” he added. But even then the subject of Pacquiao keeps showing up in his comments. “He (Cotto) wasn’t at his best against Pacquiao.”

And so here we are, looking at the two best fighters in the world battling each other.

Not in the ring where they should be but in front of microphones, cameras and voice recorders.

But despite two separate opponents lined up for them in the coming months, the clear interest was on the fight not happening.

The fight between them two.

And this is the closest to a Floyd Mayweather-Manny Pacquiao fight fans can have.

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