• Boxing

Mayweather to fight Maidana at MGM Grand

March 6, 2014
Floyd Mayweather Jr lives in Las Vegas and tweeted the news © Getty Images

For pound-for-pound king Floyd Mayweather Jr, there's no place like home.

Although there was strong competition from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York, to host Mayweather's fight with fellow welterweight titlist Marcos Maidana on May 3, the MGM Grand in Las Vegas won out and will host one of the year's biggest fights.

Mayweather, who lives in Las Vegas, just minutes from the arena that has become his fighting home, tweeted the news on Wednesday.

Although the fight between Mayweather and Maidana was announced on February 24, no site was included in the announcement. That was because the Barclays Center was trying to wrest the bout away from the MGM Grand.

Golden Boy Promotions, which has promoted all of Mayweather's fights since 2007, has an exclusive deal with the Barclays Center to put on regular boxing cards there and the arena wanted Mayweather.

However, the MGM Grand - which Mayweather once said stood for "Mayweather Gets Money," since it has been site of his massive paydays - won.

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"Floyd has a very close relationship with Las Vegas and I do as well," Golden Boy chief executive Richard Schaefer told ESPN.com. "We have done all the big pay-per-views out of the MGM Grand Garden Arena. I believe that if you built the perfect venue for pay-per-view, it would be the MGM Grand. Everything is there for us, the arena, the media is all the there, the fans are all there. It becomes fight central. There is a festive atmosphere. That is all important to Floyd.

"He wants his events to be treated like the Super Bowl of boxing and he feels like the MGM Grand is the right place."

Mayweather will be fighting at the MGM Grand for the ninth consecutive time dating to his record-breaking junior middleweight title fight with Oscar De La Hoya in 2007, which sold an all-time pay-per-view record 2.4 million units. Mayweather-Maidana will also be Mayweather's 11th fight in a row in Las Vegas, including bouts at Mandalay Bay and the Thomas & Mack Center, and his 12th overall at the MGM Grand.

Schaefer said Barclays went after the fight hard.

"The Barclays Center is a terrific venue and has established itself on the East Coast as the place for boxing," Schaefer said. "The ownership is committed to boxing and (arena chief executive) Brett Yormark is committed to boxing. They were not only very interested in hosting a Mayweather fight, they were very aggressive in pursuing it as well, and wanted to bring this fight to New York. (The region) had the NFL Super Bowl and they also wanted to bring the Super Bowl of boxing to New York.

"They put together an unbelievable marketing proposal but when it was said and done the decision was to stay in Las Vegas. Floyd is very loyal to his people and his partners. The MGM is obviously happy because they know the kind of economic impact Floyd's fights have on the casino and the whole city."

Since there is no state income tax in Nevada - and there is in New York - Mayweather will save millions in taxes, although it is unclear if part of the Barclays Center proposal was a guarantee that would have offset Mayweather's tax liability.

This article first appeared on ESPN.com

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