By Conrad Clowers
Cincinnati Herald Contributor
There is a dispute over who is the greatest welterweight /junior welterweight/ middleweight in history. You can take your pick. Sugar Ray Robinson / Leonard, Marvin Hagler, Aaron Pryor, Roberto Duran, Floyd Mayweather, Thomas Hearnes, etc. There is no dispute as to who will go down as the richest of all time in any class. That would be Floyd Mayweather Jr. Forbes lists Mayweather net worth to be in the range of 700 million dollars. No other boxer in history has even made over 500 million.
This past weekend Mayweather cemented his legacy by defeating one of the biggest names in modern day mixed martial arts. The most highly anticipated fight possibly in history ended with Mayweather knocking out Conner McGregor in the 10th round. Mayweather (for now) will join Rocky Marciano as two champions who retired undefeated. The fight with McGregor was more spectacle and hype than anything else. The chances of an amateur defeating a professional in anything are slim at best. While McGregor was able to keep the fight competitive early it was just a matter of time before Mayweather’s experience in the boxing ring took over.
The most difficult thing about champions and history is that how great someone is viewed is not an undisputed fact. It’s mythical. Floyd Mayweather is 50-0. Could Mayweather have beaten a 1982 Aaron Pryor? How about Mayweather versus a 1980 Sugar Ray Leonard?
We’ll never know how great Mayweather would have been against past great boxers in his class. Times have changed along with training methods and supplements. Floyd Mayweather has been the beneficiary of skills, great timing in history, opponents that were past their prime. Mayweather will not go down as a popular champion because of his flaunting of money. As millions of people struggle financially Mayweather willingness to flaunts stacks of money angers people. Additionally, Mayweather’s nickname is “Money.”
At the end of the day, love him or hate him, Mayweather did what he was suppose to do. Fifty times opponents had the chance to beat the 40-year-old Mayweather, and 50 times they failed. Don’t hate Floyd. All he did was laugh his way to the bank. The same as anyone else likely would have done.