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Mayweather just doesn’t get it

Floyd Mayweather Jr Miguel CottoBy John F. McKenna (McJack): There is no disputing that World Boxing Council (WBC) welterweight champion Floyd “Money” Mayweather Jr. (42-0, 26 KO’s) is indeed a great fighter. It is also not to be disputed that Floyd is perhaps the finest defensive fighter of the last several decades. He is not however the greatest fighter of all time, or anything close to it. That honor would have to go to the great “Sugar” Ray Robinson (real name Walker Smith).

Before Mayweather and his legions of supporters go out on a very long limb by arguing that Floyd is the greatest fighter of all time, let’s take a look at the facts. Firstly, Floyd Mayweather Jr. does not get to decree that he himself is the greatest fighter of all time.

That is not the way things are done in boxing. Power, or the delusion that one has power, does funny things to ones psyche.

The reason that so many boxing writers and, ring historians refer to “Sugar” Ray as the greatest fighter ever is that simply put, he was. Mayweather is not in the same league as Robinson for a number of very compelling reasons. Robinson won all eighty five of his amateur fights, sixty nine of those by the KO route. “Sugar” Ray KO’d forty of his amateur opponents in the first round.

The carnage continued when Robinson turned pro. He won his first forty fights as a pro before suffering a decision loss to “The Bronx Bull” Jake LaMotta in 1943. The loss to LaMotta was avenged just three weeks later, when “Sugar” won a unanimous decision.

Robinson then went on an amazing ninety fight winning streak against the best competition all over the world, including his famed European Tour. During that streak “Sugar” fought as often as twelve times a year.

Robinson like Mayweather had speed, but unlike Floyd,“Sugar” Ray had pulverizing KO power in both hands, even when his opponents were not standing in front of him with their hands held down at their sides. Robinson’s power was such that two of his opponents died as a result of the injuries they sustained in the ring with him.

And the competition Robinson faced was every bit as good as today’s, perhaps better. “Sugar” Ray unlike Mayweather chose not to cherry pick his opponents. He took on and defeated all comers. Robinson never came up with ridiculous excuses not to face an opponent while claiming his only intent was to clean up boxing as Mayweather has done.

This is the same Mayweather who came in a couple of pounds over weight in a catch weight fight with WBO/WBA lightweight champion Juan Manuel Marquez.

So please Floyd, when you feel the urge to place yourself in the hallowed company of “Sugar” Ray Robinson, take a deep breath, stand back and think before you speak. Further, be thankful you will never be in a position which will require you have to make excuses not to fight him.

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