What is the first thing that pokes up into our mind when we hear the name ‘Floyd Mayweather’? Is it his arrogance? his decorated boxing career? Is it his perfect 49-0 career or his infamous fight with Manny Pacquiao?
These are the typical scenarios that come running into our minds when we hear his name. Mayweather recently wrapped up his career with a win against Andre Berto. It was his 49th straight win and with that, he levelled the record of the legendary Rocky Marciano.
Despite all the achievements, the question still prevails: How will you remember Floyd Mayweather?
An arrogant, selfish boxer who achieved everything he could and we don’t try to see him beyond that.
Mayweather was born into a family of boxers. His father, Floyd Mayweather Sr. And his uncles Jeff Mayweather and Roger Mayweather were professional boxers.
But becoming a boxer like his father and uncles was easier said than done according to Mayweather. His childhood was filled with tragedies with the most notable one being the relationship with his parents.
His mother was a drug addict and most of the days, Mayweather came home from school to see heroin needles spread across his yard. The fear that Mayweather had for his mother skyrocketed when his Aunt died due to AIDS and drug addiction. His father, on the other hand, never took him to those fancy parks or movies, instead, most of the time they spent together happened to be in the gym where he trained to become a boxer.
Mayweather Sr. then resorted to drug trafficking to earn more money. This, along with the extra care that he showed towards Mayweather’s sister, further worsened the father-son relationship.
Mayweather then started living with his grandmother and when this relationship strained, he hung out with his mother in packed bedrooms with no electricity.
All the drug trafficking soon landed Mayweather Sr. in trouble as he was arrested and sent to jail. With so much chaos happening around, Mayweather saw boxing as an escape. He had to take care of his mother and being in school was not an option for him. He dropped out of school and decided to earn a living through boxing. Almost three decades later, Floyd Mayweather levelled the record of Rocky Marciano. Almost three decades later, Floyd Mayweather is considered as the best boxer ever. Almost three decades later, Floyd Mayweather retired with nothing more to achieve in the sport of boxing.
He did rebuild the bridges that were burnt throughout his life. His relationship with his parents is much better now and his father ended up coaching him after the jail sentence.
It is a fairy tale story that none of us really cares about. We only care about the arrogance that he shows inside the ring, the money he earns and the hate we have. We never see the pain that he went through to reach where he is now.
As quoted in the famous television series ‘House’, Arrogance has to be earned. And if Mayweather is arrogant, he has earned the right to be so. Now, How will you remember Floyd Mayweather?