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Monday, August 28, 2017

On matters of just boxing: The greatest ever, Floyd Mayweather

                                                                    Rocky Marciano

The great Rocky Marciano, who's record has proved if nothing else that he truly belonged at the top of the list of boxing's greatest, has finally been undone by the now greater Floyd Mayweather. I believe Floyd is the greatest boxer that has ever lived bar none which includes such luminaries as Muhammad Ali, George Foreman, Mike Tyson and Evander Holyfield to name but a few. What set Floyd apart from all of them, including Rocky, is that he rarely got hit for it was mainly him doing all the hitting. It seems that Floyd shares this opinion of himself as well and said it best as only he can in explaining why that is a fact:

                                                                   Mosley v Floyd

"What are we judging fighters on? Because if we are judging fighters on standing for a cause then it's Ali hands down. But if we are talking about the taking the least punishment and breaking records, it's Floyd Mayweather. Muhammad Ali paved the way for me to be where I am today, he's a legend but when we talk about breaking records we've got to talk about Ali losing his world title to a fighter with only seven fights. I have to take my hat off to Ali but I didn't give this sport 40 years to say that there's another fighter better than me."

                                                                        Ortiz V Floyd

The media called Floyd's opinion trash talk yet it is not just an opinion of Floyd's, it is the unvarnished truth. They grudgingly call him 'perhaps' the greatest fighter of his era. He is the greatest fighter of any era unless someone can conclusively prove otherwise by facts and the stats that has to go with it. Any opinion has to have substance before it can be elevated to anything more than trash talk itself.

                                                                   Hatton V Floyd

Ali, Foreman, Tyson, and Holyfield hit hard and got hit harder. All were knocked out not just once but several times in their careers. Ali would bear the very visible scars of these heavy hitters for the rest of his life and he would be mourned and pitied because of it long before he died and I was of those in the crowd mourning.

                                                            Cassius Clay V Sonny Liston

You cannot define a period of a career alone as the best ever but only a career in entirety. Cheery picking is the time when Ali was 20 years old until they stripped him of his title and his superior fighting skills when he was 26 years old, which was the best Ali ever was or would ever be again. He was the young Mayweather then without doubt. When he made his comeback it was a slow Ali and getting slower, and this at only 29 years old. He had to learn then to be a slugger rather the pugilistic artist he once was. Long before all that, a very young Cassius Clay appeared in a cameo role in the movie 'Requiem Of A Heavyweight' in 1962; Cassius had yet to play the ageing Muhammad Ali who also had to step into a wrestling ring just like the ageing Louis "Mountain" Rivera had, the main character played by Anthony Quinn, as he tried belatedly to make some much needed money when it really mattered. It was art imitating life in the most tragic and visible sense and one that turned out to be a terrible brutal reality and a postscript of what was yet to come for Ali.

                                                              Muhammad Ali V Inoki                                                  

Floyd is still pretty boy Floyd and bears no scars physically or mentally except those from an understandable wounded pride. And that pride has been attacked on its own merit and little else and led by one very angry media emotion: jealousy. Floyd will beat that too for the only foe anyone has really in life is oneself and he is not into self-flagellation. Every aspect of his spending is analysed with the scrutiny of a mad accountant, every historical domestic spat heightened to more lurid accounts of what really happened. We all have but one life and he lives it as he sees fit and hurts nobody outside of a boxing ring. If it sells newspapers, truth or fiction, then 'what the hell' is the media narrative and don't let the truth get in the way of a good story; not that it ever did anyway. For my dollar I will always bet on Floyd "money" Mayweather as the best there every was or is ever likely to be.

                                                                    Mc Gregor V Floyd

It was the 21st of September 1955 since Rocky Marciano made 49 and 0, almost 62 years ago. It will be a lot longer than that before Floyd Mayweather's record of 50 and 0 will be broken. One way or the other his legacy is secure as the greatest inside of any boxing ring; all the rest is just an opinion.

Barry Clifford