Floyd Mayweather Jr. recalled what it was like being prisoned at the Clark County Detention Center from June 1 through Aug. 3 of last year during a media day workout last Wednesday at his gym in Las Vegas
While in jail, Mayweather, 36, didn’t feel as if he was the world’s highest-paid athlete, which he was last year.
“Freedom is very, very important. You can be locked up and be rich, but it’s just like being poor if you don’t have freedom. So, freedom is very, very important. That’s how I feel,” said Mayweather (43-0, 26 knockouts), who will return to the ring on May 4 against Robert Guerrero (31-1-1, 18 KOs) on Showtime Pay Per View from the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.
“I have another big fight on May 4, and it is against Robert Guerrero, ‘The Ghost.’ This guy is very, very confident and he believes in himself. We know he has only one loss, but they say a true champion can bounce back.”
By the time he enters the ring against Guerrero, it will have been nearly a year since Mayweather vanquished Miguel Cotto by unanimous decision on May 5 of 2012 for the WBA’s junior middleweight belt — his fifth title in eight weight classes.
Last month, Floyd Mayweather Sr. joined Mayweather Jr. and his long-time uncle and trainer, Roger Mayweather, signaling a reunion that ended a long-term feud the father had with the son and uncle.
“I don’t think the layoff will affect me,” said Mayweather Jr., who displayed a photo of him with his father’s arm around him on his Twitter account.
“My dad is back in my corner. My dad is my lead trainer but I’m also working with my uncle Roger. The Mayweather family, as of right now, has good chemistry.”
“My lucky number is 44. So you know, I’m ready to go,” said Guerrero, who is trained by his father, Ruben. “I’m excited and I’ve worked hard for this. I’ve worked hard to be in this position. God has blessed me with a lot. I’m ready.”
Guerrero jumped from lightweight to welterweight, where his past two 147-pound bouts were unanimous decisions over Selcuk Aydin in July and November’s unanimous-decision victory over two-time titleholder Andre Berto, whom he dropped twice in the bout.
“I’ve had the right fights to be here. I’ve been built up the right way. I’m ready to go. I feel ready. I had two good fights as a welterweight weight class before this. It was what I needed to break into the weight class,” said Guerrero.
“You’ve got to go in there and fight an intelligent fight with Floyd. He is a very sharp guy, a very smart guy in the ring. That is why he is 43-0. It’s about being smart, using your head in the ring and maintaining your game plan.”
Photos by Naoki Fukuda
Lem Satterfield can be reached at email@example.com