LAS VEGAS — Floyd Mayweather Jr. mentioned the possibility "walking way" from boxing and "getting married" in the wake of a successful defense RING and WBC championships against WBA counterpart Marcos Maidana on Saturday at the MGM Grand on Showtime Pay Per View.
Speaking at the final press conference to a cluster of reporters after his turn at the podium in the MGM's Hollywood Theater on Wednesday, Mayweather promised to look impressive against Maidana, even as he indicated that he just may be done fighting.
"I can't say what's going to happen in my future. I don't know if this is my last fight or not, but it's going to be a very exciting fight," said Mayweather, THE RING's No. 1-ranked fighter, pound-for-pound, as well as THE RING, WBA and WBC 154-pound champion.
"I take one fight at a time, and I can't overlook this guy. We'll fight on Saturday, and after the fight is over, we'll talk with [Mayweather Promotions CEO] Leonard [Ellerbe,] we’ll talk with [advisor] Al [Haymon,] and we’ll talk with [Golden Boy CEO] Richard Schaefer, and we'll see what we come up with."
On Thursday night at the MGM, Mayweather (46-0, 26 knockouts) will be the recipient of the Sugar Ray Robinson award for the 2013 Fighter Of The Year from the Boxing Writers Association of America.
"All of this is history that we all are experiencing, now. I personally feel that there will be other fighters who come along, but that there will never, ever be another Floyd Mayweather," said Ellerbe. "We're witnessing history, and, Floyd made an interesting comment at the round table yesterday that this very well could be his last fight. I'm shocked. It was news to me."
Last September, Mayweather dethroned Canelo Alvarez by majority decision for the RING and WBC 154-pound championships in a bout that became the highest-grossing boxing event of all time with nearly $150 million in revenue reported. Mayweather earned a career-high guaranteed purse of $41.5 million against Alvarez,
Schaefer projects Saturday's bout to produce the fourth highest gate behind Mayweather-Canelo, Mayweather's split-decision victory over Oscar De La Hoya in May 2007, and Lennox Lewis' unanimous decision over Evander Holyfield in November 1999 — all of which were in Las Vegas.
Mayweather is bound for the Hall of Fame, having won eight title belts over five divisions. The 37-year-old is not only the sports’ highest paid boxer, but also, the highest paid athlete over the past three years, having parlayed that into a successful promotional company named for him.
Mayweather will pocket a guaranteed $32 million purse against $1.5 for Maidana, according to the Nevada State Athletic Commission, the same as he took in his unanimous decision victories over Miguel Cotto and Robert Guerrero in May of 2012, and, May of 2013, respectively.
Mayweather's promotional company has several fighters, one of whom, Ishe Smith, briefly held the IBF's junior middleweight belt. Mayweather has been named the highest-paid American athlete for the past two years.
Including the fight with Maidana (35-3, 31 KOs), Mayweather has just three fights left on a contract he has signed with Showtime, meaning he was scheduled to end his career in the fall of 2015.
"Obviously, we have a long term deal with our partners, Showtime, but we never know," said Ellerbe. "Come Saturday night, this could be it."
Mayweather also insisted that Maidana could represent the last bout of his career.
"Why wouldn't I walk way? As a human being and as a man, I can do what I want to do with my career. It's not really hard. If I choose to walk away, I'll walk away. It's just me being a human being. If I feel like walking away, then I'll walk away. I didn't say that I had health problems or anything," said Mayweather.
"If I feel like walking away, then I'll walk away. If an artist wants to stop painting, then he stops painting. It's like, 'I've reached my limit. I'm in my prime at almost 40? What was I when I was 20? I'm thinking about wanting to settle down, get married and have a family. I want to get married."
MAYWEATHER DONATES TO BREAST CANCER FOUNDATION
"Floyd has decided to bring 46 breast cancer survivors, along with their guests, out to our fight on Saturday night," said Ellerbe. "He'll be making a donation to the Susan G. Komen Foundation on behalf of that, and, also, he's donating this amount for all of the survivors to purchase wigs."
Mayweather donated $15,000 to the Susan G. Komen Foundation toward treatment of breast cancer, and also, invited 46 women who have been affected by breast cancer as guests to Saturday night's fight.
"The cancer, you know, some of the females in my family have had breast cancer and cancer, period. My auntie, my dad's sister, was the first person in my family that died of breast cancer," said Mayweather.
"So this is fight No. 46 for me. This is my 46th fight, so I decided to bring 46 women who have had breast cancer to my fight, and buy them all new wigs. I've got a heart and I am passionate. I didn't get here by myself."