Floyd Mayweather's Greatest Hits

Originally Published: September 12, 2013
By Kieran Mulvaney | ESPN.com

Floyd Mayweather Jr. will earn in excess of $41.5 million for Saturday's clash with Saul "Canelo" Alvarez, the 45th contest of his professional career. That career has been lucrative, successful and to this point undefeated, and has seen him headline a succession of major events over more than 15 years. Here's a selection of the greatest hits of his career -- so far.

Genaro Hernandez - Las Vegas Hilton, Las Vegas, Oct. 3, 1998: In only his 18th professional contest, Mayweather took on super featherweight champion Hernandez. There were plenty of prognosticators who argued it was too much, too soon for the youngster, but Mayweather was rampant, dominating the veteran and scoring a TKO win to secure his first world title.

Diego Corrales - MGM Grand, Las Vegas, Jan. 20, 2001: Both Mayweather and Corrales were 130-pound titleholders. Both were Las Vegas residents. Both were undefeated. The discord between the two camps was real. There was no shortage of money being laid on Corrales to emerge victorious, but in what is arguably still the single finest performance of his career, Mayweather dominated, dropping Corrales five times and forcing a corner stoppage in Round 10.

Jose Luis Castillo - Mandalay Bay, Las Vegas, Dec. 7, 2002: Castillo remains the only man to have faced Mayweather twice as a professional, courtesy of the controversy that greeted Mayweather's points victory in their first encounter, which was Mayweather's lightweight debut. Because of that controversy, Mayweather agreed to a rematch, and although the unanimous decision was close, this time it was clear.

Arturo Gatti - Boardwalk Hall, Atlantic City, N.J., June 25, 2005: Going into this junior welterweight contest, Gatti was by far the more bankable star of the two, but Mayweather left absolutely no doubt about who was the superior boxer, landing punches on the slower Gatti with consummate ease until Gatti's corner stopped the fight after Round 6, handing Mayweather his third world title.

Oscar De La Hoya - MGM Grand, Las Vegas, May 5, 2007: Billed by some as the fight to save boxing, this remains – at least until this weekend – the biggest-selling boxing pay-per-view of all time. This was the fight that saw "Pretty Boy" Floyd morph into "Money May" and launched his career into the stratosphere. The fight itself was not especially memorable; after starting well behind a solid jab, De La Hoya faded down the stretch and Mayweather won a split-decision win and a junior middleweight title.

Ricky Hatton - MGM Grand, Las Vegas, Dec. 8, 2007: This was notable primarily for the thousands upon thousands of British fans who descended on Sin City and proceeded to drink the MGM Grand dry. Hatton was a huge star in the United Kingdom, but despite making an aggressive start, he was no match for Mayweather, who dropped him with a left hook and then stopped him in the 10th. And still the British fans kept singing ...

Shane Mosley -- MGM Grand, Las Vegas, May 1, 2010: If the meeting between Mosley and Mayweather came many years later than many would have liked, it produced arguably the most shaky moments of Mayweather's various title reigns. A booming right hand in the second round buckled Mayweather's knees, and another shortly afterward had him hanging on for dear life. His head cleared with extraordinary rapidity, however; by the end of the round, Mayweather had assumed control. Mosley had missed his chance, as Mayweather controlled every second of the rest of the fight.

Miguel Cotto -- MGM Grand, Las Vegas, May 5, 2012: As with Mosley, the fight with Cotto came too late for many people. But in a rousing performance, Cotto proved he had one last good fight in him, fighting Mayweather tooth and nail for the first eight rounds and bloodying his lip, until – stop us if you've heard this one before – Mayweather took charge over the final third of the bout and won a unanimous decision.

Kieran Mulvaney covers boxing for ESPN.com, HBO.com and Reuters, and also blogs for Discovery Channel News.

Comments

Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, photo & other personal information you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment, and may be used on ESPN's media platforms. Learn more.