Sugar Shane Mosley Says He Retired from Boxing Due to Botched Elbow Surgery

Joseph ZuckerFeatured ColumnistAugust 16, 2017

LAS VEGAS, NV - SEPTEMBER 12:  Boxer 'Sugar' Shane Mosley attends the VIP Pre-Fight Party for 'High Stakes: Mayweather v. Berto' presented by Showtime at MGM Grand Garden Arena on September 12, 2015 in Las Vegas, Nevada.  (Photo by Denise Truscello/Getty Images for Showtime)
Denise Truscello/Getty Images

Boxing legend Shane Mosley told ESPN.com's Dan Rafael on Tuesday that he has retired from the sport, and he blamed a botched elbow operation as the reason behind his decision.

Mosley said Wednesday he had looked ahead to fights in 2017 and 2018 before "fate, if you will, stepped in," per Rafael:

"I went in for a minor arthroscopic surgery to remove a couple loose bone fragments from my elbow and the surgery turned into a whole ordeal after the surgeon admittedly 'accidentally' burned me on my forearm, leading to a sick infection and needing like four or five days of IV antibiotics and two weeks of antibiotics at home. It was crazy and surreal to learn that I could never fight again."

Mosley added that his right arm is "ruined."

In his previous interview with Rafael, Mosley said his knees and shoulders were troublesome as well, while his back was "starting to break down."

The 45-year-old finishes his illustrious career with a 49-10-1 record. His last fight was a loss to David Avanesyan on May 28, 2016.

Back-to-back losses to both Vernon Forrest and Winky Wright prevent Mosley from being considered one of the top boxers ever. He also fell to Floyd Mayweather, Manny Pacquiao and Canelo Alvarez in the space of four fights.

Still, Mosley was one of the best pound-for-pound boxers in the world in his prime. After defeating Philip Holiday for the IBF lightweight title in 1997, he reeled off eight successful title defenses, seven of which ended in knockouts. He also owned two victories over Oscar De La Hoya, the first coming in 2000 and the second in 2003, and shocked many fans when he knocked out Antonio Margarito in 2009.