The 10 Biggest Knocks Against Floyd Mayweather's Legacy
Floyd Mayweather Jr. is arguably this century's greatest fighter, but there are numerous cracks in his resume. As he enters his supposed final fight, here are the top 10 issues clouding Mayweather's unbeaten record.
Delaying His Biggest Fight For Five Years
Mayweather likes to call himself the best ever, but his strength of schedule doesn't warrant it. The biggest threat of his career was Manny Pacquiao from 2009-12. Instead of facing Pacquiao at his peak and silencing his critics, Mayweather avoided him despite fighting on the same network. In waiting for the more-rugged Filipino to decline, a fresher Mayweather beat his rival in a what-could've-been megafight.
Floyd's Peak Consisted Of Mismatches
Mayweather's late 20s featured several fights with overmatched competitors or badly faded fighters. While then-dangerous welterweights Antonio Margarito and Paul Williams loomed, Mayweather opted for the likes of easy-to-hit warrior Arturo Gatti and in-over-his-head Carlos Baldomir, among others, to much skepticism.
About That Loss That Didn't Count
In his move from junior lightweight to lightweight in 2002, Mayweather won a controversial unanimous decision over Jose Luis Castillo despite then-champion Castillo dominating the second half of the fight and outlanding Mayweather by a large margin. Mayweather won the rematch later that year.
Waiting For Rivals To Decline Part I: Shane Mosley
Mosley's prime came before Mayweather moved to welterweight, but he remained a threat once Floyd moved to 147 pounds in 2005. Mayweather-Mosley took place in 2010 when Mosley was nearing 40, coming off a 15-month layoff and no longer had the speed to make it competitive.
Waiting For Rivals To Decline Part II: Miguel Cotto
Residing in Mayweather's divisions for years, Cotto was a menacing body-puncher. But the Puerto Rican watched Floyd fight a fading Oscar de la Hoya and an undersized Ricky Hatton in 2007, when both Cotto and Mayweather were unbeaten welterweight champs. The gracefully aging champion/savvy matchmaker caught a trending-down Cotto in 2012 and won despite a strong challenge.
Dusting Off Old Tricks
Following a win over Pacquiao, Mayweather skirted fights with contenders Amir Khan, Keith Thurman and Kell Brook in order to face Andre Berto, who is 3-3 in his last 6 fights and not ranked as a top-10 welterweight. Catch the action for $74.99. Act now!
Was That Really Necessary?
For his comeback fight in 2009 after a brief retirement, Mayweather took on Juan Manuel Marquez, a champion 2 weight classes down. In spite of a major advantage, Mayweather discarded the contract weight of 144 pounds and came in at 146. Shockingly, a unanimous decision ensued.
Backing Out Of A Challenge
Mayweather was set for his career's biggest challenge in a move up to 154 pounds to face defensive matrix Winky Wright, twice a winner over Mosley, in 2005. But with details agreed upon, Mayweather abruptly backed out and began his stretch of weak opposition.
Securing An Edge When None Is Needed
Entering his May 2014 fight with Marcos Maidana a 10-to-1 favorite, Mayweather further tilted the odds when he objected to Maidana's glove choice the Nevada State Athletic Commission approved. Despite not wearing the puncher's gloves he sought, the Argentinian brawler gave Mayweather his toughest fight since Castillo, losing a majority decision.
This Remains Mayweather's Lone KO This Decade
This cheap shot represents Mayweather's only 2010s KO. Not that Victor Ortiz stood much of a shot, but it illustrates how Mayweather's become a fighter who relies exclusively on points. Instead of daring to be great, Mayweather's taken the safe route time and time again.
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