Exclusive: Floyd Mayweather friend Ishe Smith gives thoughts on UFC rumors, talks his own future
In a recent interview with WBN, Ishe Smith revealed his inside knowledge on consistent rumors regarding a move into UFC for friend and mentor Floyd Mayweather.
The former super-welterweight world title holder, who is currently planning a big run in 2018, has been a close ally of Mayweather for some years now but still says he couldn’t second-guess what the ex-pound for pound king does with his career.
“You have to understand Floyd is a billionaire man, he’s off making multi-billion dollar deals, sh** the man is friends with Warren Buffet, so he has put people in place to handle these things and expects them to get the job done.
“It’s hard to say if Floyd will ever fight again, he seems content and comfortable in retirement. This man is still cashing PPV checks from four or five years ago, that’s how I know he’s a multi billionaire. It’s just something he doesn’t like discussing.
“I don’t see him coming back, but who knows, that itch may come back down the line.”
On his recent fight with Conor McGregor, Smith said: “Floyd went out there and did what he always does and that’s win. It’s crazy how the fight was this and the fight was that, but now those same people want to fight Conor (he laughed).
“At the end of the day, Floyd has broken the mould and people hate him for it. I respect it as someone finally got the best of this game after this game got the best of so many fighters.
“I am also happy for Conor as the man was on welfare four years ago. His hustle and determination made him into a multi-millionaire. Of course, he hit the Mayweather lottery lol but that’s what you call fighting Floyd.
“Being on the inside I am privy to certain information and rumblings, and as I stated earlier Floyd is already a billionaire. With that being said, it’s an old school rule that you keep certain information in house, so even if I knew the day to day rumblings about Floyd I wouldn’t say. That’s a rule I have always kept, even when I have had good days in camp with some hall of fame fighters, I didn’t go tell.
“It is something that is lost now a days amongst men and women, just loyalty in general is a rare trait now a days.”
Asked his thoughts on the situation with Dana White, Smith speculated about the possibility of Floyd making a UFC debut by stating: “Dana is a close acquaintance of mine, I have known that man since I was about 15 years old. That was before the riches, before the fame, before the notoriety. He was just plain old gym rat Dana to me. It’s good to see all of the successes he has had.
“S***, growing up witnessing him and Floyd accomplishing all they have is truly astonishing.”
‘Sugar Shay’ even admitted there’s a chance he might grace the octagon himself in the future.
“Before I am done with the fight game I have made it known that I would love to dabble in the UFC. I have trained with some of their fighters, Forrest Griffin, I went to high school and trained with Gray Maynard, it’s just something I always wanted to try, honestly.
“Regarding Floyd though, nothing surprises me so I will just say stay tuned.”
With his boxing career reinvigorated thanks to a sterling effort against Julian Williams in November, Smith hopes to now stay busy himself into 2018.
“I know me being off fourteen months wasn’t part of Floyd’s plan or doing but we have been friends since I was a youngster and I have been knowing that man since I was 10 years old, so I know if no one else got my back he does but going forward I just want to be active.
“Honestly, this year has a been a bit of a disappointment as I never imagined that after beating Galarza in 2016 I wouldn’t fight for fourteen months.
“I mean I think people forget this is how most of us live and care for our families. I have six kids, a fiancé!
“I am basically out for these months with not a single offer for a fight, and the one offer I did receive in August of this year fell apart a week before the fight, no real opponents were ever solidified.
“Then you hear people making up stories telling folks I was offered fights but turned them down, so a guy that’s been on the B side multiple times, went too Pawel Wolak’s back yard, went and took K9’s (Cornelius Bundrage) title in his hometown and who fought Randall Bailey with 13 fights, plus Vanes Martirosyan, Danny Jacobs, Fernando Guerrero, Erislandy Lara, Julian Williams, is just going sit out for fourteen months having an epiphany to start turning down fights, get the f*** outta here!
“So that’s disappointing man cause I have been down for the cause, loyal, respectful, and have always given my all every time out. So for people to lie about me like that hurts man, especially being a man who is the sole provider for his family.
“If I can no longer do it that’s one thing, but even with the layoff look how I fought!
“Can you imagine had I been active? That’s all I care about honestly! Going forward just mapping out a plan, and being active, that’s it.
“Sometimes in fights the match is so good it wasn’t any losers, I don’t think I lost with Julian Williams, that was a winning situation, it’s about building on that going forward.”
The ex-Contender star finished by insisting that beyond his career inside the ring there are plans in place to stay in the game.
“I have had a couple of youngsters reach out about me being a mentor and helping them in their careers, so that’s something I really look forward too down the line. I’ve had some great mentors coming up in this game so that’s something I believe I can pass on,” said Smith.
Phil Jay is Editor of World Boxing News. Follow on Twitter @PhilDJay