Mayweather (49-0) takes lopsided decision in last fight
Las Vegas — Floyd Mayweather Jr. wasn’t about to change what he does best in his last fight.
Both dominant and defensive, Mayweather used all the tricks learned in a 19-year pro career Saturday night to take a lopsided 12-round decision over Andre Berto and retain his welterweight titles in what he insists was his final fight.
Mayweather ran his perfect record to 49-0, tying a mark set by the late heavyweight champion Rocky Marciano, in a fight where he was chased but never really tested. He piled up points with a sharp jab and quick counter punches, leaving Berto swinging at air most of the night.
By the late rounds, Mayweather was both talking to Berto (30-4) and taunting him, secure in the knowledge he was winning big against the 18-1 underdog. In the final seconds of the fight he took a victory lap, fist raised in air.
The ringside scorecards reflected Mayweather’s dominance, with one judge scoring it 120-108, giving him every round. The other scores were 118-110 and 117-111, while The Associated Press had Mayweather winning 119-109.
Mayweather earned another $32 million for the fight, and once again he didn’t seem to have to work too hard to make it. Berto, who had lost three of his last six fights, tried to make it a fight but his punches were wide and mostly missed their marks.
“What can I say, I was the better man tonight,” Mayweather said.
Mayweather did what he’s done best in his 19-year career, fighting defensively and picking his shots against Berto. He was especially effective when Berto rushed at him, using his counter-punching skills to keep Berto away.
It was a winning combination once again, just as it had been in his 48 previous fights.
“I pushed him to the limit,” Berto said. “But he was just better.”
Mayweather had vowed to give fans an action fight in his last bout, after being criticized for fighting defensively in his win over Manny Pacquiao. He did trade punches with Berto on several occasions, but never stayed in the pocket long enough for Berto to find his mark.
Mayweather complained to his father in the corner during the fight that he hurt his hand, but said since he is retiring it didn’t matter.
“You gotta know when to go. I’ve had a great career,” Mayweather said. “I’m leaving with all my faculties. I feel like I’m smart and sharp.
“I’ve accomplished everything,” Mayweather added. “I’ve done everything in my sport.”
Ringside punch stats showed Mayweather’s defensive wizardry. Mayweather was credited with landing 232 of 410 punches, while Berto landed only 83 of 495.
“I was in great shape but it was difficult to fight him,” Berto said. “He was really, really slippery.”
Mayweather weighed in at 146 pounds, a pound more than Berto.
If Mayweather retires, it will end a career that saw him become a pay-per-view star and earn more money than any boxer before him. Though most in boxing believe he will some day fight again, the 38-year-old said he had plenty of money and his health is more important than chasing records.