Less than six weeks away from the biggest fight of his career, WBC interim welterweight champion Robert Guerrero was arrested Thursday morning at New York’s John F. Kennedy Airport for attempting to board an airplane with an unloaded handgun.
After a promotional tour in New York this week for his upcoming May 4 showdown with WBC champion and pound-for-pound king Floyd Mayweather Jr., Guerrero, 30, was arrested after trying to bring an unloaded gun onto a Delta flight bound for Las Vegas, as reported by multiple sources. There are conflicting reports as to the type of weapon the fighter was carrying, with FOX New York and the New York Post reporting that it was a 40-caliber Smith & Wesson semi-automatic, while the local NBC affiliate reported the gun was a 9 mm Smith & Wesson.
Although Guerrero has a permit to carry a gun in California, he is not licensed in New York, where gun laws are among the strictest in the nation. He was reportedly in possession of the gun at the request of media for a photo shoot since he is a known avid hunter.
The irony is that while in the Big Apple, Guerrero and his wife Casey appeared on the Christian Broadcasting Network’s “The 700 Club” on Monday, among other outlets.
It is unclear if this incident will have any impact on the upcoming May 4 bout that is to be televised on Showtime pay-per-view and will be heavily promoted across the various CBS/Showtime platforms leading up to fight night. As stringent as New York gun laws are, it is unlikely that consequences will come in the form of jeopardizing an event that features the highly anticipated ring return of Floyd Mayweather, Jr. in what will be the first fight under his newly signed contract with the premium cable network.
The Guerrero arrest is the second legal issue to strike a prominent boxing figure since HBO severed ties with Golden Boy Promotions almost two weeks ago, with the promoter now expected to align themselves with Showtime. WBC lightweight champion Adrien Broner was arrested on March 19 in Miami for reportedly biting the arm of a security guard attempting to break up a fight between the fighter and another man. A video subsequently circulated the internet last Friday showing Broner throwing a large wad of cash into the air at a strip club before he participated in his own on-stage performance with one of the female dancers. Another video soon surfaced of the brash 23-year old tearing up three $20 bills and flushing them down the toilet.
These incidents have not done much to enhance the face of boxing. They are also causing a public relations nightmare for Showtime – welcome to the world of big-time boxing broadcasting.
• Enter a daily or weekly fantasy sports league at Fan Duel for a chance to win fast and easy money!
Check out other great articles at Sports Media 101.