Comparing “Sugar” Ray Leonard & Floyd “Money” Mayweather, Jr.!
By Ken Hissner: Both “Sugar” Ray Leonard and Floyd “Money” Mayweather, Jr. brought a lot of interest to boxing. I once did an article, “When “Sugar” Ray Leonard beat Floyd Mayweather!” It was his fourteenth fight, and it was Floyd’s dad, 15-1, in 1978.
Comparing Leonard and Mayweather starting with their amateur achievements, Leonard was 145-5. In 1976 he won a Gold Medal beating boxers from Sweden, the Soviet Union, Great Britain, East Germany, Poland, and Cuba, all by 5-0.
Mayweather was 84-6 or 84-9 in amateurs. In the 1994 Olympics, he won a Bronze Medal defeating boxers from KAZ, Armenia, and Cuba before losing a disputed decision to one from Bulgaria 10-9.
Leonard won the WBC World Welter title, stopping Wilfred Benitez, 38-0-1, in November of 1979. Two fights later lost for the first time in his first fight with Roberto “Hands of Stone” Duran, 71-1, in 1980 by scores of 146-144, 146-145, and 148-147. In his next fight, he stopped Duran after 8 rounds.
In 1981 Leonard won the WBA World Super Welter title, stopping Ayub Kalule 36-0. He was trailing Thomas “Hit Man” Hearns, 32-0, by scores of 124-122, 125-121, and 125-122 when he stopped Hearns in the fourteenth.
Leonard was 32-1 when he retired due to a detached retina. Twenty-seven months later, he came back to come off the canvas stopping Kevin Howard, 20-4-1, in the ninth round. Next won by split decision over WBC Middle champion “Marvelous” Marvin Hagler, 62-2-2, in April of 1987. A lot felt he had lost, but I wasn’t one of them.
In Leonard’s next fight, he won the vacant WBC Super Middle and WBC Light Heavy titles stopping Donny Lalonde, 31-2, in November of 1988. After a fourteen-month layoff, he came back to lose to WBC Super Welter champ Terry Norris, 26-3, in February of 1991 and to Hector “Macho” Camacho, 62-3-1, by stoppage in five in March of 1997, ending up at 36-3-1, with 25 stoppages.
Mayweather won his first world title in October of 1998 for the WBC Super Feather title stopping Genaro Hernandez, 38-1-1. In April of 2002, he won the WBC Light title defeating Jose Luis Castillo, 46-5-1.
This was controversial, and in a rematch, he easily won.
In June of 2005, Mayweather won the WBC Light Welter title, stopping Arturo “Thunder” Gatti 39-6. In April of 2006, he won the IBF Welter title defeating Zab Judah 34-3. In May of 2007, he won the WBC Light Middle title defeating Oscar De La Hoya 38-4.
In September 2013, Mayweather defeated the WBA Super Welter champ Saul “Canelo” Alvarez, 42-0-1, by a majority decision. I thought he won easily. In his next fight, he defeated Marcos Maidana, 35-3, by majority decision. I had it a draw. He beat Maidana in his next fight.
Mayweather ended his career in August 2017, stopping Conor McGregor, 0-0, in seven rounds, improving his record to 50-0 with 27 stoppages. I thought this was a very bad decision to fight this MMA champion.
There you have it comparing two of the greatest boxers of their times.
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