TIME Boxing

Fans Across U.S. Sue Pacquiao Over Mayweather Fight

In this May 2, 2015 photo, Manny Pacquiao answers questions during a press conference following his welterweight title fight against Floyd Mayweather Jr. in Las Vegas.
John Locher—AP In this May 2, 2015 photo, Manny Pacquiao answers questions during a press conference following his welterweight title fight against Floyd Mayweather Jr. in Las Vegas.

They contend that the fight was a fraud

(LAS VEGAS)—Boxing fans across the country and their lawyers are calling the hyped-up fight between Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather Jr. a fraud and want their money back, and then some.

At least 32 class action lawsuits across the country allege Pacquiao should have disclosed a shoulder injury to boxing fans before the fight, which Mayweather won in a unanimous decision after 12 lackluster rounds that most fans thought didn’t live up to the hype.

Fight of the century? More like fraud of the century, the lawsuits contend.

“The fight was not great, not entertaining, not electrifying. It was boring, slow and lackluster,” according to a lawsuit filed in Texas alleging racketeering, a claim usually reserved for organized crime.

A lawsuit filed on behalf of Flights Beer Bar near LAX airport in California said Pacquiao and his promoter’s actions were, “nothing but a cash-grab.” The bar paid $2,600 to broadcast the fight.

As for that grabbed cash, the fighters are each expected to earn more than $100 million, Mayweather more than Pacquiao, and HBO and Showtime broke records raking in more than $400 million from 4.4 million paying to watch the pay-per-view broadcast.

Those 4.4 million paid up to $100 each to watch the fight, and the lawsuits are seeking their money back.

It isn’t as easy as showing a receipt and demanding a refund, though. A federal panel of judges will likely first need to decide if the cases from multiple states and Puerto Rico should be consolidated into one case. From there, a judge would have to decide whether to certify them as class actions or not.

What’s sought in each is the same: a jury trial and at least $5 million in damages, the threshold for federal class actions.

But the defendants differ. All include Pacquiao and his promotions team but some add Mayweather and his representatives along with HBO, Showtime and cable companies.

Representatives for Pacquiao and Top Rank Promotions, HBO and Showtime had no comment to offer on the lawsuits and Mayweather Promotions did not return multiple phone messages.

Exhibit A for most of the lawsuits is a Nevada Athletic Commission medical questionnaire that Pacquiao signed days before the fight. When asked if he had any injuries including to his shoulder he replied “no.”

In fact, his shoulder was injured enough to warrant surgery shortly after the fight.

In a twist reserved for who-done-its, Pacquiao revealed for the first time in a post-fight press conference that he had torn his rotator cuff weeks before. The Nevada Athletic Commission denied him a pain reliever mere hours before the fight when regulators first learned of the injury.

Conspiracy theories abound as to how many people knew about the injury and when, including claims in a few of the lawsuits that Mayweather had a spy in Pacquiao’s camp and the boxer targeted Pacquiao’s right shoulder during the fight.

Experts in resolving legal disputes doubt disgruntled boxing fans will be able to claim victory.

“They’d have more lawsuits if they didn’t hold the fight,” said Maureen Weston, director of Pepperdine University’s entertainment, media and sports dispute resolution project.

If a fight is what fans were paying for, the fighters unquestionably delivered, she said. Just because people didn’t like the show doesn’t mean they get their money back, she said.

Ultimately, the question is, who did Pacquiao have a legal duty to explain his injury to? Weston said.

Short answer: He didn’t have to tell viewers, Weston said. The only contract viewers had was with their cable companies, which in turn had contracts with HBO and Showtime.

It’s not the first time customers have taken their fight to court when things didn’t go quite the way they expected in the field of entertainment.

Remember Milli Vanilli? Music fans in the 1990s argued the lip-synching pop duo owed them a refund once it was revealed they weren’t actually singing.

Or the bite-fight with Mike Tyson? Sports fans may have gotten an earful but they contended they didn’t pay to see a boxing match only for it to be disqualified.

Neither resulted in judgments for refund-seeking customers. Milli Vanilli fans got a buck or two back in a settlement.

So if viewers were promised a fight, and they got a 12-round fight, isn’t that enough?

Lawyer Caleb Marker, who represents clients in two separate class action suits against Pacquiao, says that’s arguable.

TIME mma

Ronda Rousey Says She’d Only Fight Floyd Mayweather ‘if We Were Dating’

Take that Floyd

Undefeated UFC bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey said she’d have no problem taking down controversial boxing icon Floyd Mayweather if push came to shove.

During an interview with Access Hollywood this week, the former Olympian said it’s unlikely the two will ever meet in the ring, before delivering a pop shot at the boxer’s checkered history with domestic violence.

“Well, I would never say that I can’t beat anyone, but I don’t think me and him would ever fight, unless we ended up dating,” said Rousey.

In 2012, Mayweather spent almost three months behind bars after being found guilty of assaulting his ex-girlfriend.

[Access Hollywood]

TIME Boxing

See Mitt Romney Throw a Punch in Holyfield Boxing Match

Mitt Romney fought boxing champ Evander Holyfield in a charity boxing match

TIME Boxing

Watch Mitt Romney Fight Boxing Champion Evander Holyfield

Romney threw in the towel after two short rounds

(SALT LAKE CITY)—Former Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney and five-time heavyweight boxing champion Evander Holyfield squared off in the ring at a charity fight night event in Salt Lake City.

Romney, 68, and Holyfield, 52, sparred, if you could call it that, for just two short rounds Friday before Romney ran away from the boxer and threw in the towel, giving up a round early in the lighthearted fight that came amid several other fights by professional boxers and an auction.

The two barely threw any punches and largely just danced around, occasionally lightly jabbing each other in the midsection in what was much more of a comedic event than an actual bout.

The black-tie affair raised money for the Utah-based organization CharityVision, which helps doctors in developing countries perform surgeries to restore vision in people with curable blindness.

Romney’s son Josh Romney, who lives in Utah, serves as a volunteer president for CharityVision.

Corporate sponsorships for the event ranged from $25,000 to $250,000. Organizers say they raised at least $1 million.

“He said, ‘You know what? You float like a bee and sting like a butterfly,'” Romney said after the fight.

Attendees just enjoyed the festive atmosphere and the chance to see Romney in the ring.

“Oh, it was great. I was very proud of Mitt,” said Katie Anderson, who attended the event with her husband.

“I was happy it went to the second round,” Devin Anderson said.

Romney, the most-high profile Mormon in America, is hugely popular in the state, where more than 60 percent of the residents are members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Beyond his religious connections, the former Massachusetts governor is remembered by many for turning around Salt Lake City’s 2002 Winter Olympics after a bribery scandal.

Romney has recently built a home in the Salt Lake City area and registered as a Utah voter.

TIME mitt romney

Mitt Romney Once Again Set to Lose, This Time in Boxing

The 2012 presidential nominee is set to face world champ Evander Holyfield for charity

Mitt Romney is going to lose. But unlike his 2008 and 2012 presidential bids, he knows it ahead of time.

Romney, who has never previously boxed, is scheduled to face world heavyweight champ Evander Holyfield during a charity event Friday evening in Utah. The former Republican governor of Massachusetts and 2012 GOP presidential nominee enters the ring as the undeniable underdog. Romney’s optimistic entrance music? “I Will Survive.”

“I expect to be beaten but unbowed,” Romney told the New York Times magazine in an interview.

Romney, the stiff patrician who is more comfortable captaining his boat around New Hampshire’s Lake Winnipesaukee than throwing haymakers, is using the stunt to raise cash for Charity Vision, which has ties to the Romney clan. The former governor’s wife, Ann, is on the organization’s board of directors; his son Josh is the group’s president.

Promoters estimate $1 million will go to the group, which helps treat blindness and eye problems in 25 countries. That sum would pay for about 40,000 eye surgeries from El Salvador to Indonesia.

But trading in cuff links for boxing gloves is a shift for Romney, who traded verbal jabs with President Obama but little more. Now, he’s facing down a four-time world champion and Olympic bronze medalist.

It is unlikely that Holyfield will be cowed by Romney’s tenure running 2002’s Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City.

“I will be doing a bit of dancing and dodging Friday night,” Romney told the magazine, comparing it to taking political hits during two runs for president.

A 30-second negative commercial, however, is unlikely to have anything close to the pain Holyfield could inflict on Romney’s matinee-idol jawline.

Romney advisers are hoping the jabs will be for show and in good humor. The fight is supposed to go three rounds, but the play-acting in the ring could be cut short once the novelty wears off. After all, one Romney friend says, the governor is doing this more to help his family continue its charity work than to put himself back in the spotlight.

While absurd, Romney is hardly the first political figure to stray from staid formality to help his own cause. Richard Nixon appeared on NBC’s “Laugh-In” variety show as a candidate in 1968, and presidential hopefuls are frequent election year cameos on “Saturday Night Live.” Former Republican Majority Leader Tom DeLay shook his rump on “Dancing With the Stars,” only to withdraw with a fractured foot.

And former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, the GOP’s 2008 vice presidential nominee, signed with “Survivor” producer Mark Burnett for her own reality show, “Sarah Palin’s Alaska.” She has since been branded “the first lady of the outdoors” on the Sportsman Channel’s “Amazing America.”

Still, no politician has yet to take a right cross to the face from a boxing champ. Romney’s allies are betting Holyfield goes easy, and that the two-time presidential hopeful doesn’t become the first politician to know the literal meaning of being on-the-ropes.

TIME Boxing

Mayweather Says No Rematch With ‘Sore Loser’ Pacquiao

Floyd Mayweather Jr., left, connects with a right to the head of Manny Pacquiao, from the Philippines, on May 2, 2015 in Las Vegas
John Locher—AP Floyd Mayweather Jr., left, connects with a right jab to the head of Manny Pacquiao in Las Vegas on May 2, 2015

The gloves are off

(NEW YORK) — Floyd Mayweather said in an upcoming interview with Showtime that at this moment he’s not interested in a rematch with Manny Pacquiao “because he’s a sore loser and he’s a coward.”

The interview was recorded late Tuesday night and will air Saturday night after the network’s replay of boxing’s richest fight, which Mayweather won by decision last weekend in Las Vegas to stay undefeated.

Asked if he thought Pacquiao was hampered by the right shoulder injury that later required surgery, Mayweather tells Jim Gray, “Absolutely not.”

“Excuses, excuses, excuses,” he said later.

“He was fast,” Mayweather insists in quotes released Thursday. “His left hand was fast. His right hand was fast and he was throwing them both fast and strong.”

Using an expletive for emphasis, Mayweather adds that “I’m not going to buy into” it, “and I don’t want the public to buy into” it.

“He lost,” Mayweather said. “He knows he lost. I lost a lot of respect for him after all of this.”

Mayweather acknowledges that he earlier texted ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith to say he welcomed a rematch.

“Yeah, but I change my mind,” Mayweather said. “At this particular time, no, because he’s a sore loser and he’s a coward. . If you lost, accept the loss and say, ‘Mayweather, you were the better fighter.'”

TIME Boxing

Showtime and HBO Among Those Hit With Lawsuit Over Pacquiao Injury

Manny Pacquiao during press conference after the title unification fight vs Floyd Mayweather in Las Vegas on May 2, 2015.
Robert Beck—Sports Illustrated/Getty Images Manny Pacquiao during press conference after the title unification fight vs Floyd Mayweather in Las Vegas on May 2, 2015.

A class action lawsuit alleges that there was a duty to determine the fighter's health before advertising the 'Fight of the Century'

Manny Pacquiao’s failure to check a box that he was injured is creating a rain of class action litigation. Five lawsuits have already been filed. Perhaps the most unusual one comes in Illinois where the plaintiffs are not only suing Pacquiao’s promoter Top Rank and his adversary Floyd Mayweather, but also Showtime, HBO, AT&T, Comcast and DirecTV.

A judge will have to decide whether the plaintiffs really have standing to sue on allegations that Pacquiao’s shoulder injury was concealed, but in the meantime, those who paid between $89 to $100 to watch the fight on pay-per-view are now alleging their own injuries. The lawsuit seeks $300 million in damages over an event labeled as “Fight of the Century” with no disclosure about Pacquiao’s injury.

According to the lawsuit, “If any of Defendants, between April 4, 2015 and May 2, 2015, had disclosed that Pacquiao, the underdog, had injured his right shoulder, or had suffered a torn right rotator cuff during training, or had been recommended to rest for 30 to 40 days beginning on and around April 6, 2015, or that his right arm was at an estimated 60% of full functioning, they would not have realized the number of pay-per-view purchases they were anticipating.”

Exactly what legal obligations do broadcast outlets with sports telecast rights have in advance of an event?

The lawsuit filed by attorneys Robert Duncan and Thomas Cronin makes the uphill case that those obligations are extensive.

HBO and Showtime are alleged to have committed negligent misrepresentation by failing “to determine and disclose, though it knew or should have known, that Pacquiao had injured his right shoulder” or by continuing to promote the fight as “The Fight of the Century” “even though it knew that Pacquiao was injured and likely unable to compete with boxer Mayweather.”

Here’s the complaint.

Showtime had no comment while Daniel Petrocelli, an attorney for Top Rank, has put out a statement, “The lawsuits are factually wrong and legally wrong, and we expect they will be dismissed in due course.”

Meanwhile, there’s still other class action lawyers who are swinging their fists in a different direction.

One lawsuit in Missouri targets Charter Communications over a cable outage that prevented customers in the St. Louis area from watching the fight. According to that lawsuit, these individuals “were outraged by their inability to watch the fight that they had paid for.”

This article originally appeared on The Hollywood Reporter.

More from The Hollywood Reporter:

TIME Boxing

Here’s What Floyd Mayweather Has to Say to Pacquiao and All the Haters

In his 19-year career, the undefeated boxer says he has only had one excuse

Floyd Mayweather Jr. has a message for Manny Pacquiao and everyone who’s against him.

“Nineteen years in the fight game and I’ve had one excuse: Don’t have an excuse,” said the boxer, who was booed by a large section of the MGM Grand crowd on Saturday after defeating Philippines’ champion Manny Pacquiao on points. “Winners win and losers have excuses.”

Even though Mayweather extended his unbeaten record to 48-0 in the “Fight of the Century,” he is far from a popular man, and crowd favorite Pacquiao said after the bout that he didn’t agree with the judge’s unanimous decision and thought he had beaten the American.

Pacquiao’s apparent “excuse,” meanwhile — a shoulder injury that he didn’t report before the fight — may result in a class-action lawsuit and possible suspension.

Read next: See the Mayweather-Pacquiao Fight Recreated as a Game of Punch-Out!!

Listen to the most important stories of the day.

TIME Boxing

Manny Pacquiao Is Facing a $5 Million Class-Action Lawsuit

Controversy over that shoulder injury intensifies

Manny Pacquiao has been named in a $5 million class-action lawsuit, filed Tuesday, claiming that the boxer and his team had failed to disclose his shoulder injury to the Nevada Athletic Commission prior to his May 2 match against Floyd Mayweather Jr., as required by law.

The lawsuit, filed by Stephane Vanel and Kami Rahbaran, “on behalf of all persons who purchased tickets; purchased the pay per view event or who wagered money on the event,” claims damages for those who “were victimized by [the] Defendants’ failure to disclose and to cover up the injuries of Defendant Pacquiao.”

Filed in a Las Vegas U.S. District Court, the suit names Pacquiao, his promotion company Top Rank Inc. and president Todd DuBoef, adviser Michael Koncz and promoter Bob Arum as defendants.

The lawsuit comes on the heels of a Monday report by the Associated Press that said Francisco Aguilar, chairman of the Nevada Athletic Commission, was investigating why Pacquiao checked “no” when asked to disclose if he was injured. Koncz later shouldered the blame saying, “I checked it. It was just an inadvertent mistake.”

Pacquiao and Top Rank released a joint statement Tuesday regarding the shoulder injury, but not the lawsuit. “A few hours before he was expected to step in the ring, when Manny’s doctors began the [treatment] process, the Nevada Commission stopped the treatment because it said it was unaware of Manny’s shoulder injury.”

Pacquiao is expected to undergo surgery to repair a torn rotator cuff and be out of action for nine to 12 months.

TIME viral

See the Mayweather-Pacquiao Fight Recreated as a Game of Punch-Out!!

"No hugs!"

The so-called fight of the century happened last weekend, but now you can relive the boxing bout between Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao in the way you’ve always dreamed of: as a game of Nintendo’s Punch-Out!!

In the video game version of the match, the Mayweather and Pacquiao avatars throw a few punches and then can’t stop hugging each other.

Mayweather won both the real and Punch-Out!! matches, but as the Nintendo referee proclaims at the end, “Meh.”

Read next: Manny Pacquiao’s Hometown Fans Dejected but Still Plan Hero’s Welcome

Listen to the most important stories of the day.

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