Floyd Mayweather faces Andre Berto in Las Vegas on Saturday night, but is this really the end for the self-proclaimed ‘best ever’?
‘Money’ insists that this is his last fight, despite the fact that a likely victory this weekend will leave him on par with Rocky Marciano at 49-0.
While the appeal of surpassing the legendary heavyweight’s achievement alone is enough to warrant another outing next year, it is just one of many reasons as to why the 38-year-old is ultimately lying.
First and foremost, Mayweather is still the dominant figure in the sport both in and out of the ring. While he has beaten some of the best fighters of his generation over a prolonged period of time, he has amassed a personal fortune in excess of $400m in the process.
Admittedly, he many not be as quick in mind and action and the feet perhaps aren’t as mobile as the early days. However, the one-sided nature of his win over Manny Pacquiao in May displayed that he still has more than enough left in the tank.
A rematch with ‘Pac-Man’ is an obvious option in 2016, and coupled with the opening of the new MGM AEG Arena next year, why wouldn’t Mayweather want to headline the first event? He’s had 12 consecutive bouts at the MGM and it’s effectively his home from home with his face plastered all over the resort.
‘The Best Ever’ can suggest that it is the end all he wants, but essentially Saturday night is about looking good against an opponent that has been hand-picked for a reason, in a fight that ‘Money’ will win comfortably with many even tipping him to claim his first stoppage in years.
That would put him level with Marciano, and in turn sets up another major night for boxing, Las Vegas and sport in general when he prepares for his 50th fight.
Whether or not the opponent picked for that bout excites the fans more so than Berto remains to be seen, as pay-per-view figures are not looking good for Saturday. However, don’t be fooled into thinking that this is the last time you’ll see one of the greatest boxers of all time in action. Mayweather will be back.
Mayweather vs Berto is the main event on a card that also features George Groves taking on Badou Jack for the WBC super-middleweight world title. Mayweather and Berto are expected to ring walk at around 4am (UK time).