Mayweather doesn’t believe Ali or Sugar Ray Robinson were better than him
By Chris Williams: For a lot of people they see former WBA/WBC heavyweight champion Muhammad Ali (56-5, 37 KOs) and former two division world champion Sugar Ray Robinson (173-19-6, 108 KOs) as the greatest fighters that ever lived.
Those guys were certainly good, but they came from a different era and both of them tended to get hit a lot, and they both were beaten many times during their careers. WBA/WBC welterweight champion Floyd Mayweather Jr. (47-0, 26 KOs) doesn’t believe for a second that Ali and Robinson were better than him.
“No one can ever brainwash me to make me believe that Sugar Ray Robinson and Muhammad Ali was better than me,” Mayweather said via ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith’s First Take. “No one could ever brainwash me and tell me that. But one thing I will do: I’m going to take my hat off to them and respect those guys because those are the guys. Those are the guys that paved the way for me to be where I’m at today.”
I would have to agree with Mayweather here. He clearly is a better fighter than both Ali and Robinson. Those guys were beaten many times by guys that had less than impressive skills compared to Mayweather. Ali stood in front of Joe Frazier in their first fight and was beaten in 1971.
Robinson had so many losses that it’s hard to know where to begin with in talking about his many defeats. He was beaten all throughout his career by crude sluggers, and he also had a number of draws against the same type of fighters. The guys that Robinson lost to where fighters that Mayweather would have likely easily beaten if they were the same size as him.
“Leon Spinks beat him when he had seven fights,” Mayweather said. “They’d never put a fighter in there with Floyd Mayweather with seven fights. So you gonna tell me that it’s cool and take punishment and let a man tire himself out from beating you? And then he’s basically fatigued, you hit him with a few punches and he go down and quit. And you want to be glorified for that? Absolutely no.”
I agree with Mayweather again. Ali was beaten in his prime by Leon Spinks, who was nothing special as a pro. I know Spinks captured a gold medal in the 1976 Olympics, but he was never able to do much in the pro game other than beating an out of shape Ali. Why Ali was out of shape is something only he can determine.
I think Mayweather is definitely the No.1 guy in the history of boxing based on wins and the talent that he has. There have been some great fighters during different eras, but I think Mayweather has the better skills than anyone that’s ever fought before. If you put him in with the likes of a prime Sugar Ray Robinson, Oscar De La Hoya, Sugar Ray Leonard, and Thomas Hearns, I think Mayweather would beat all of them.
We’re going to see Mayweather’s skills front and center in less than two weeks when he faces the Filipino star Manny Pacquiao on May 2nd at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada. Boxing fans will be able to see the huge difference between Mayweather and Pacquiao’s skills when they get inside the ring to prove who the top dog is for this era.