March 30, 2008
Florida Citrus Bowl
Some disclosure before we get in to this one. I have a heavy personal investment in boxing. That said, I despise Floyd Mayweather while simultaneously acknowledging that he is without much question the best pound for pound boxer of the last decade. But Mayweather’s brilliance is the way he fights within the confines of the rules of boxing. Success in boxing would not be all that conducive to success within the kayfabe rules of wrestling. It should be noted, however, that they do address this by having this match be a no disqualification match, helping with the suspension of disbelief necessary for this match.
Mayweather had bloodied Big Show pretty bad in the buildup to this one, which was sort of a much more physical version of the Bam Bam Bigelow/Lawrence Taylor feud 13 years prior. Mayweather does make some WrestleMania history with arguably the dumbest fucking ring gear in history.
The match itself is, of course, painted as speed versus size, but they don’t sell Mayweather’s punching power short either (though Mayweather’s greatest strength is his defense). The World’s Largest Athlete chases Money Mayweather around the ring for much of the early going, and those body shots that Floyd delivers are not pulled punches.
When Mayweather retreats to his corner and drinks from a chalice, Big Show takes the opportunity to bring the chalice holder over the top and in to the ring, displaying his dominance and strength. Big Show then catches a Mayweather punch toward his head. Big Show wrestles him to the ground and attempts to stomp the million dollar fists of Mayweather, but just misses. As Mayweather escapes up the ropes in the corner, almost reminiscent of Muhammad Ali against Antonio Inoki, he slaps a sleeper hold on Show. When Big Show fights out, he finally stomps Mayweather’s hand.
Big Show delivers an echoing chop to the chest of the welterweight champion of the world and then stands on top of his back. Each time Big Show executes a wrestling move, every spectator within the camera’s view comes to their feet.
Mayweather’s entourage pulls a beaten down Floyd from the ring and attempts to escape. Mayweather, the celebrity, is somehow working heel in this match (hint: because he is an asshole). Big Show chases them down and brings Floyd back to the ring.
Big Show lifts Mayweather up for a chokeslam, but a member of the entourage hits him in the back with a steel chair. Show chokeslams him instead but when he turns around, Floyd has a chair. He delivers shots to boos, followed by a low blow, and then even more vicious chair shots to Big Show’s head. Mayweather then removes his glove and retrieves brass knux off of one of his men. He nails Big Show hard with a shot to the jaw and Big Show is unable to get back to his feet before a ten count, because apparently there is a ten count rule in this match or something.
Big Show does his best to make this entertaining but it’s honestly sort of a shitshow. Mayweather is a good sport, selling Big Show’s offense, but the whole idea is almost too silly even for professional wrestling. Gimme LT and Bam Bam any day.