Floyd Mayweather says his 50th professional fight will definitely be the last one.
Floyd Mayweather (49-0, 26 KOs) is returning to the boxing ring to take on UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor (0-0, 0 KOs) in a lucrative, titanic pay-per-view event in Las Vegas. There are no world championships on the line; this is MMA’s biggest attraction taking on boxing’s biggest attraction in a cross-sport super showdown.
Mayweather is, of course, coming out of retirement for the McGregor fight. He’d called it a career after defeating Andre Berto in September 2015, but later walked it back specifically to take on McGregor.
Speaking to media following the first of a four-leg “World Tour” press conference to promote the fight, Floyd insisted that this time he’s really done with competing after August 26th.
“I’m not the same fighter I was 21 years ago,” Mayweather said (quotes via MMA Fighting). “I’m not the same fighter I was 10 years ago. I’m not even the same fighter I was two years ago. I understand that but I have that fighter’s mentality. But this will – I spoke to Al [Haymon, Mayweather’s manager]. Today we had a meeting and I can’t push my body [anymore]. It’s grueling. Training camp is grueling. I can’t do it anymore. It’s rough. Training camp is rough. I’m just going to the gym, working hard everyday and it’s rough. This has to be my last one.
“After taking a couple years off, I was okay but then we end up somehow making this fight happen and now I really know that this is it. Deep in my heart, this is it. I can’t.”
The 40-year-old Mayweather retired in 2008, just a few months after knocking out Ricky Hatton. This killed an expected rematch between him and Oscar De La Hoya, of which their first fight was the last time Mayweather wasn’t the A-side matchup. He returned to the ring in September 2009 for a fight against Juan Manuel Marquez.
If you are to believe Mayweather’s retirement talks this time around, and perhaps it’s more grounded in reality now that he’s in his 40s and not his 30s, there is a possibility that Mayweather vs. McGregor could be the last time we see either man in combat sports competition. The 28-year-old McGregor, however, did say he plans to return to MMA after the Mayweather fight.