Floyd Mayweather Jr.: How He Can Become Greatest of All Time

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Floyd Mayweather Jr.:  How He Can Become Greatest of All Time
Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Greatest of All Time. It's not a title you can actually win. It can only be bestowed upon you by popular consensus. 

This means, of course, that it is a title no one can ever decisively hold.

In the sport of boxing, a pretty high percentage of historians and writers agree that the honor currently belongs to Sugar Ray Robinson. But you would have no trouble finding plenty of dissenting opinions, knowledgeable boxing observers who would argue the distinction rightfully belongs to any of a handful of different fighters.

Floyd Mayweather Jr. has never been shy about making his own claim to this mythical crown, and a pretty good chunk of contemporary boxing fans agree with him. They point to his undefeated record and the undeniable artistry of his in-ring performances, and they have a point.

Still, the majority of us need to see a little bit more before we're willing to put him on the short list with Robinson, Henry Armstrong, Benny Leonard, Ray Leonard or Harry Greb.

That he is the most talented boxer of his generation seems to me impossible to deny, unless you are simply blinded by your hatred of him. But this era in boxing simply can't be compared to the era of Armstrong and Robinson, when everybody fought everybody, over and over, without the sort of dog-and-pony shows we have seen a la Pacquiao vs. Mayweather.

You can't even compare boxing today to the "Four Kings" era that Leonard emerged from. 

Ultimately, you can only judge boxers based on the available opponents. If Mayweather manages to finish out his career as I've outlined in the next few slides, he has to be in the conversation for greatest pound-for-pound fighter ever, whether his haters like it or not.  

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