Floyd Mayweather’s on the money in ‘fight of century’
FLOYD Mayweather will have the chance to equal Rocky Marciano's 49-0 record and go out unbeaten after winning yesterday's so-called 'Fight of the Century' against Manny Pacquiao.
The man they call 'Money' eased to victory in the much-hyped bout, to add the WBO welterweight title to the WBC and WBA titles he already owned.
He was awarded the fight 118-110, 116-112 and 116-112 by the three judges.
Mayweather confirmed after the fight he would have one more contest in September before hanging up the gloves to equal the great Marciano, who dominated boxing in the 1940s and '50s the same way the 38-year-old American has done since making his debut in 1996.
He would not reveal who that fight would be against, but Briton Amir Khan is on the list of possible opponents, as is IBF welterweight champion and another Brit Kell Brook. Pacquaio might also want a rematch.
Of course, Mayweather might even yet decide he wants to have a go at beating Marciano's record by winning 50 out of 50.
Tickets for the fight had changed hands for as much as $350,000 with celebrities such as Sean Combs, Mark Wahlberg, Robert De Niro and Sting ringside to watch arguably the two best fighters of their generation clash.
Mayweather was at his defensive best, using his greater reach to his advantage as he picked off Pacquiao like a sniper with straight lefts and left hooks as the 36-year-old looked to get inside Mayweather's jab.
The American's footwork also kept the Filipino guessing as he kept things at long range.
If it had been a popularity contest, Pacquiao would have won by a knockout. His fans burst into choruses of 'Manny, Manny' throughout the fight, while Mayweather was greeted by boos as the fight wore on.
"I take my hat off to Pacquiao," Mayweather said.
"I see why he's one of the guys at the pinnacle in the sport of boxing.
"I knew he was going to push it, I knew he was going to win some rounds. (But) I was a smart boxer ... we did what we had to do tonight."
Pacquiao did not agree with the judges' verdict, saying: "It's a good fight. I thought I won the fight.
"He didn't do nothing. He was always running, he was always moving outside.
"He was always moving around. It's not easy to throw a lot of punches if he's moving around. If he stays, I can throw a lot of punches."
In his pre-match talk to both fighters, referee Kenny Bayless said: "This is the fight the whole world has been waiting for."
The world had been waiting 1876 days for it to take place after it was originally mooted back in 2010.
Whether it lived up to the billing is open to debate.
But what is surely not in question now is Mayweather's claim to now be the best pound-for-pound boxer the world has seen.