Big time boxing matches bring out heavy hitters from sports and entertainment and one of the biggest fans of the sweet science is NBA star Metta World Peace, aka Ron Artest.
World Peace was at Saturday’s Saul “Canelo” Alvarez versus Alfredo “El Perro” Angulo bout and spoke to a few of us in the press room after Canelo disposed of Angulo in 10 rounds.
Despite many agreeing with the early stoppage of the bout due to Angulo’s face looking beaten and bruised, World Peace thought that Angulo should have been allowed to finish the final two rounds of the 12-round affair.
“Angulo he lives to fight to the death, you know he does not mind dying in the ring,” World Peace explained. “So in that situation I don’t think you can take his gift away from him, which is his heart. This is his life so from that standpoint I don’t think they should have stopped the fight, they should have let him go.”
When asked who Canelo should meet in the ring next he said that he deserves a bout that isn’t as grueling as a Floyd Mayweather or any other kind of top star bout would be.
“With Canelo you got to give him a chance to grow, he’s fighting all these tough fights. He deserves an easy fight. They should give him three tuneup fights he’s fighting too many tough fighters.”
Canelo put on a dominant performance against Angulo, but World Peace didn’t think that he was in the shape a top-tier fighter should be in.
“He’s still out of shape, so he needs to get in better shape. Once it got to Round 7 or 8 he started to get winded a little bit. He’s got to get in better shape.
When asked about that Mayweather-Marcos Maidana bout that was officially announced Saturday afternoon just hours before the Canelo-Angulo showdown, he didn’t want to make any predictions but admired Mayweather’s dedication to the sport.
“Obviously “Money” May, he works hard and I don’t think anybody works harder. To tell you the truth I see him in the gym and it’s inspiring,” World Peace said of Mayweather. “I go to the gym (Mayweather’s) to see just what hard work is really like. I work hard, I’m one of the best defensive players ever but just to see, just to be reassured that yeah that’s hard work, we in the gym every day and I see Floyd as inspiring.”
Mayweather turned 37 years old in February and is still the king of the ring and it appears that no one will pose a threat on the 45-0 fighter before he calls it a career in a year-and-a-half. When asked if he was in awe of Mayweather still going strong at an age that is considered old in professional sports he seemed to take offense to the notion.
“The only people that are amazed are people that doubt somebody’s greatness. Only people that are amazed are people that can’t do it and that never believed in themselves,” World Peace ranted. “So how would you be amazed at a man that’s about to be 38? The only way you’re amazed is because you never probably believed in yourself. You shouldn’t be amazed, it should be elementary, it should be, ‘Hey he’s 38 years old, doing great, eh we all knew it.’”
World Peace then took a stand for the children after being asked if it was rough keeping up the spirit to remain great after all the years Mayweather has been on top of the sport of boxing.
“It’s (maintaing a winning mindset) not tough, you’re sending the wrong message to the children. It’s not tough it’s easy just do it.”
Taking it a step further, World Peace said that he thought that Mayweather should be a role model for children on how to live a healthy lifestyle since he abstains from drugs and alcohol.
“When you got a healthy lifestyle this things are easy, but it looks hard to you guys because some guys don’t have healthy lifestyles. Floyd should be on the cover of Oprah Magazine, he should be on the cover of Nickelodeon’s he is the healthiest athlete out there.
“He (Mayweather) sends a good message to our children around the world. I don’t care about how much he stays in shape, it’s the message he’s sending to the kids not partying, he’s not smoking, he’s disciplined he doesn’t drink. He still looks great that message deserves to be on… Life Magazine.”
World Peace has been seen at many of the bigger fights over the past several years and says he isn’t there as a non-paying guest and respects what the fighters are doing in the ring.
“I just like to watch people fight. You know I try to pay for my tickets and these guys are putting their lives on the line and they deserve everything they get,” World Peace said.