In the past year, Michelle Beadle has emerged as one of the most important and independent voices at ESPN. When First Take’s Stephen A. Smith suggested that battered women were guilty of provoking their assailants, it was Beadle who offered the most eloquent and vocal denunciation of Smith’s comments. A relative newcomer to boxing, Beadle joined the HBO Boxing team as a special correspondent for its popular sports magazine telecast, The Fight Game, where she brought a fresh and needed perspective to a sport whose audience and media is overwhelmingly older and male. Beadle has been in Las Vegas all week, covering the Mayweather-Pacquiao superfight for both HBO and ESPN. So why won’t she be at the fight tonight?
Because Floyd Mayweather —unabashed misogynist and unrepentant batterer of women—doesn’t want her there. After the Mayweather camp learned that Beadle had publicly condemned Mayweather for his history of violence against women, they—via their network, the CBS-owned Showtime—denied Beadle a press credential for the fight. Mayweather/Showtime also revoked a press credential to CNN’s Rachel Nichols, who relentlessly grilled Mayweather over his history of domestic violence last year. A source closely connected to these events tells Deadspin that Mayweather’s publicist, Kelly Swanson, told producers there’s “no way” Nichols gets in.