Mayweather performs embarrassing U-turn over fight with Nasukawa
Floyd Mayweather has performed an embarrassing U-turn and will not be fighting Japanese kickboxer Tenshin Nasukawa.
The retired American boxing legend declared himself ‘blindsided’ by the original announcement, apologising to fans for the misleading information regarding the New Year’s Eve fight.
He explained himself in a lengthy Instagram statement: ‘Now that I am back on U.S. soil after a long and disappointing trip to Tokyo, I now have the time to address you, my fans and the media in regards to the upcoming event on December 31st that was recently announced.
Floyd Mayweather claimed the original plan was to fight in front of a few wealthy spectators
Mayweather claims his team failed to realise what they were getting themselves in for
‘First and foremost, I want it to be clear that I, Floyd Mayweather, never agreed to an official bout with Tenshin Nasukawa. In fact (with all due respect) I have never heard of him until this recent trip to Japan.
‘Ultimately, I was asked to participate in a 9 minute exhibition of 3 rounds with an opponent selected by the ‘Rizen Fighting Federation’. What I was originally informed of by Brent Johnson of ‘One Entertainment’ was that this was to be an exhibition put on for a small group of wealthy spectators for a very large fee.
‘This exhibition was previously arranged as a ‘Special Bout’ purely for entertainment purposes with no intentions of being represented as an official fight card nor televised worldwide.
The 41-year-old was touted to fight Japanese kickboxing star Tenshin Nasukawa (right)
‘Once I arrived to the press conference, my team and I were completely derailed by the new direction this event was going and we should have put a stop to it immediately.
‘I want to sincerely apologise to my fans for the very misleading information that was announced during this press conference and I can assure you that I too was completely blindsided by the arrangements that were being made without my consent nor approval.
‘For the sake of the several fans and attendees that flew in from all parts of the world to attend this past press conference, I was hesitant to create a huge disturbance by combating what was being said and for that I am truly sorry.
‘I am a retired boxer that earns an unprecedented amount of money, globally, for appearances, speaking engagements and occasional small exhibitions.’
Mayweather claims he was caught out by the events in Japan but chose not to cause a scene
(L-R) One Entertainment CEO Brent Johnson, Mayweather, Rizin chairman Nobuyuki Sakaibara, Nasukawa, and Rizin general manager Nobuhiko Takada promoted the fight for December 31
The original terms of Mayweather’s fight with Nasukawa were not disclosed at the press conference announcement.
Speculation abounded over whether the 50-0 pugilist would be boxing, fighting under adapted rules or entering the MMA cage in Saitama.
Mayweather now regrets holding his tongue on stage while everyone else’s wagged and the news made headlines across the globe.
The former five-weight world champion has not fought since he racked up a half-century of wins with victory over UFC star Conor McGregor back in August 2016.
Mayweather posted this photo of himself along with the apology to his fans on Wednesday