The upcoming exhibition bout between Floyd Mayweather and Logan Paul has been ridiculed by former world cruiserweight champion Tony Bellew, who said the event wasn’t worthy of being called a boxing match.
Bellew was speaking to BBC Radio 4’s ‘Don’t Tell Me The Score’ podcast, where he made no secret of his disdain for the matchup.
Mayweather, a 50-0 legend of the ring, effectively retired from world championship-level boxing after his 2015 win over Andre Berto.
He took on former two-division UFC champion Conor McGregor in a huge money fight in 2017, where he stopped the mixed martial artist in the 10th round in Las Vegas.
Since then, Mayweather fought in a mismatched exhibition bout against Japanese flyweight kickboxer Tenshin Nasukawa, and has is now set for his latest off-the-wall exhibition fight.
This time, Mayweather will take on YouTube star Paul, who has competed in boxing just twice.
Paul faced fellow YouTuber KSI on both occasions, once in an amateur bout that was ruled a draw, then in a rematch as a professional bout, which saw KSI earn a split-decision victory.
Now Paul will go from making his pro debut against an 0-0 opponent to facing arguably the greatest technical boxer of all time as he takes on Mayweather in an exhibition bout on June 6 in Miami.
It’s a bout that has left former WBC cruiserweight champ Bellew totally bemused.
“It’s all in the name and the love of money – nothing else”, he said.
“This will continue to go on until someone is badly hurt. It is as simple as that.
“Sorry to say that, but that’s what will see this off, someone getting really hurt.”
Bellew admitted there was a serious possibility that could happen at some point, saying, “Of course, at some stage, it’s got to.
“Two celebrities will fight, someone will get hurt. That’ll be the end of it.
“No one will do it again. Well, it will probably continue. We’ll probably have an unlicensed event somewhere.
“How these [fights] are being licensed, I don’t know.”
Bellew then questioned the sanity of booking an 0-1 rookie whose lone pro bout ended in defeat to a fellow YouTuber against one of the sport’s all-time greats.
“This guy is going to match up against Floyd, the greatest fighter of his generation,” he said.
“This boy has had two fights against two absolute no marks. And it’s just insane. This is not boxing.
“This is the world of showbusiness. And this has gone on for hundreds of years, there’s been men that have fought bears, guys that have gone up against the Tigers with swords back in the Gladiator days in the colosseum, it’s just now they are sticking cameras on it.
“It’s just another version of the circus.”