Floyd Mayweather Jr. is the greatest fighter – and I don’t care what kind of ‘fighting’ your mean, boxing, MMA, judo, kickboxing, wrestling, gladiator, pillow fights, whatever – to ever walk the planet earth and anybody else trying to make money in those sports just ought to be happy he retired and left them a lane.
Now, I’ve actually met Floyd a couple of times and– I like him. Quite frankly, he struck me as a kid, just happy to be doing what he loved and a little aw shucks amazed that they were paying him to do it.
I later heard about all the allegations of domestic violence, but I didn’t, well couldn’t judge him for it.
Paraphrasing Jesus from John 8:7, I’ll say, “He that is without sin against a woman among you, let him first cast a stone at Floyd.”
And with my hands now completely empty, I’ll return to writing about boxing.
I’ll never forget turning my TV to HBO one night back in 1998 and watching what I knew would be something. The gifts were obvious even then. He was so much faster, so much better. I don’t even remotely remember his opponent. I mean, he was boxing against someone, but Floyd’s moves were so singular, distinctive and determined, it was almost as if he were in a gym alone, training for something much bigger to come.
Now, you never wanna get gassed the first time you experience something new; athlete, chick, song, movie or book. But Floyd was so different even then that, although I gave room to my inner pessimist to dismantle him – what would take him down? success? cocaine? hoes? fame? – another voice said, “what if he takes this thing all the way?”
But that, as I knew, as we all knew, as anyone knows, would require work.
And get this straight: I’m a Muhammad Ali man myself. Ali’s my favorite fighter but if, for my entertainment alone, God shrunk Ali down or blew Floyd up and allowed them to fight, even The Greatest wouldn’t be able to solve Floyd.
Think about it: only Rocky Marciano retired similarly unbeaten and with the same exact 49-0 record as Floyd. But while I think Ali would have beat Marciano 7 out of 10 times and there’s pretty good evidence to support the notion that Marciano was “carried” or “protected” against other top heavyweights of his era, name a fighter of his own time that Floyd didn’t fight.
I’m still waiting.
Also, incredibly, people use against Floyd the fact that he’s never had a tough fight. Now, imagine this logic applied to any other sport. If a basketball, football or baseball team went unbeaten and untied all throughout their regular seasons and playoffs and blew out all the teams they faced by unbelievable margins, who could possibly use this as evidence that they sucked?
But perhaps the best thing that happened to Floyd, as far as perception goes, is that some HBO genius decided to develop a show called 24/7 that actually showed him while he trained. This gave us evidence that not only was he doing the work, but also exactly what that work was.
Who among you can do sit-ups that end with you standing on your feet, nigga?
Don’t let your personal likes and dislikes color your objectivity.
The only fighter that might have ever been able to beat Floyd Mayweather would have been a Floyd Mayweather from another time. Like maybe a younger Mayweather might have beaten an older one. And that’s only a possibility.
The older Mayweather may have had too much savvy for the younger Mayweather.
Either way, Floyd wins.