Sports Profile: The humble beginning of one of boxing’s greatest

Known as “pretty boy” and “money,” Floyd Mayweather is an Olympian and seen as one of the most talented boxers who has ever lived. He has an undefeated record of 50 wins all of which were won by knockout. During his career, he has held 15 world titles in four different weight classes. As an amateur, Mayweather won a bronze medal in the featherweight division at the 1996 Olympics, three U.S. Golden Gloves championships and the U.S. National Championship at featherweight. On Aug. 26, 2017 Mayweather stepped out of retirement to fight Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) fighter Conor McGregor. He took the win and once again established his strength and dominance as a boxer.

Although Mayweather experienced much success throughout his boxing career, his early life was plagued with tribulations. Floyd came from a long line of boxers, including his father and uncles. He began boxing at a young age, and his grandmother was the first to see his potential.

“I think my grandmother saw my potential first,” he said in an interview with Rolling Stone Magazine in 2010. “When I was young, I told her, ‘I think I should get a job,’ she said, ‘No, just keep boxing.’”

That encouragement was what fueled him to become the champion that he is today, along with the determination to live a better life than his elders. His mother was addicted to drugs and his aunt died from AIDS as a result of drug use. Floyd’s father was incarcerated during his early childhood. His grandmother raised him and his sister when she could, but he was often left to fend for himself.

After years of consecutive wins against big boxing names such as Diego Carrales, Carlos Hernandez, DeMarcus Corley and Arturo Gatti, Mayweather retired from boxing in 2007. Since then, he has emerged only to fight the one-comeback fight against McGregor in 2017. Mayweather has demonstrated his dominance as a fighter throughout the past two decades and left his mark on popular culture. He represents the resounding appeal of the American Dream by using his story as a reminder that where you come from does not ultimately define you. He has left his mark on the boxing world as one of the greatest fighters ever to compete in the sport.

Photo courtesy of Boxing News

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