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Counter Punch

Ortiz camp deflects Floyd's latest verbal jab

Floyd Mayweather is up to his old tricks, messing with his opponent's via the media. (AP)

LAS VEGAS -- Floyd Mayweather isn’t afraid to get his hands dirty. At a press conference before his 2001 showdown with Diego Corrales, Mayweather told reporters he was leaving a ticket for Corrales’s wife. Why? Because several months earlier Corrales had been arrested on charges he assaulted his 98-pound, pregnant wife, breaking her collarbone and ribs and bruising her spine. Mayweather battered Corrales over ten rounds. Corrales later spent 14 months in prison.

The point: psychological warfare is part of Mayweather’s game.

Mayweather was at it again Wednesday. At the final press conference promoting his welterweight title fight with Victor Ortiz, Mayweather told reporters that Ortiz’s father -- who Ortiz has said beat him and left the family when he was 12 -- never left him at all.

“It’s not true,” said Ortiz’s trainer, Danny Garcia. “I don’t know where Floyd got that information. His father left him. His father was drinking too much and he was out of control. When he lost his wife, he was getting worse.”

Several members of Ortiz’s team believe Mayweather’s source is Robert Garcia, Ortiz’s former trainer and the estranged brother of Danny. On Wednesday, Mayweather said he planned on leaving Robert tickets for the fight.

“Probably came from him,” Danny said. “Robert doesn’t want Victor to win this fight. Robert doesn’t like me to be above him. I don’t know why. When he was a trainer, I was working for Coke. I wasn’t a trainer. I used to tell him ‘with my heart, I wish you good luck. I’m happy that you have good fighter. I want you to be on the top.’ Now that I’m here, I’m doing good and he doesn’t want me to do good.”

Ortiz says Mayweather’s tactic will have no affect on him.

“I’m a tree stump,” Ortiz said. “He can say whatever he wants. I’ve learned through the media, when you’re doing something well, everybody is [saying] something positive about you. When you hit the floor, everyone forgets your name. It’s going to be a very sad moment for Floyd on Saturday when he experiences it firsthand.”

Danny Garcia says the presence of his brother won’t have any impact on the fight.

“If he does come or he doesn’t come, I don’t care,” Danny said. “What is he going to do? Nothing is going to happen. We’re still going to beat Mayweather.”

-- Chris Mannix

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