“The One” isn’t just the marketing slogan for this September’s fight between Canelo Alvarez and Floyd Mayweather Jr. It’s also the number that, barring a draw, will be appended to the end of the losing man’s record. That scenario adds to the allure of a bout pairing the most popular boxers in the United States and Mexico today.
Alvarez turned pro at 15. Now, almost eight years later, the 23-year-old is THE RING champion at 154 pounds and has a record of 42-0-1 with 30 knockouts. (The lone draw came in Alvarez’s fifth fight).
Mayweather has won three RING championships, sanctioning-body belts in five divisions and lineal titles in three weight classes over his 17-year career. The 36-year-oldwill become a double RING champ and win a fourth lineal title should he win on Sept. 14. He is 44-0 with 26 knockouts. As he is fond of saying, and updating after each win, 44 have tried and 44 have failed. (Never mind that two of those victories came against the same opponent, Jose Luis Castillo.)
That perfection has become ingrained in Mayweather’s self-made mythos. That zero, that nothing, has become his everything. It has been part of his argument for being the greatest ever, better than Muhammad Ali, better than Sugar Ray Robinson, better than anyone and everyone else.
But what if he loses?
Is it possible that Mayweather’s legend and his legacy would come crashing down? If he lost “The One,” would the one at the end of his record be the one thing people think of first?
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