Floyd Mayweather: 3 Reasons He Won't Retire Undefeated

Justin Tate@justindavidtateCorrespondent IAugust 3, 2011

Floyd Mayweather: 3 Reasons He Won't Retire Undefeated

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    Floyd Mayweather, Jr. has captured multiple championships at five weight classes and made millions of dollars, yet he continues to fight.

    He touts his undefeated record as proof of his dominance in the sport of boxing, but how much longer can that last?

    Does the money continue to attract him? Does the attention keep him in the ring?

    Countless boxers have fallen victim to defeat. Mayweather may not be different.

    If he fights long enough and battles the right opponent at the wrong time, he will lose.

    Here are three reasons he may not retire undefeated.

3. Opposition

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    Mayweather's possible age problem has been chronicled, but it's worth mentioning again.

    Mayweather is 34.

    He's fighting Ortiz, a 24-year-old hard-hitting warrior with a renewed desire to win.

    Another 24-year-old rising star named Amir Khan wishes to face Mayweather next year, and Mayweather has already said yes.

    Khan is even faster than Ortiz and is trained by the legendary Freddie Roach.

    If Mayweather is to continue fighting, facing fighters a decade younger is not the easiest way to retain an undefeated record.

    His brain is often compared to a computer that analyzes data.

    A properly-kept computer can retain all the data it amasses over years of collecting information. But, as with boxers, all computers eventually slow down.

    Mayweather's brain has a process, and if he processes the fight too slowly as it's happening against a competent foe—such as his rival, Manny Pacquiao—he will lose.

    All it takes is the wrong fight and the wrong night.

    With the type of opposition Mayweather is facing, that wrong night is more likely to come sooner than never. 

2. Encumbrance

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    Mayweather has always had a number of issues in his life, but not like this.

    Never before has Mayweather faced so much public drama with such high-risk fights coming his way.

    From defamation law suits to domestic violence cases, Mayweather has a world of trouble aimed at him.

    The IRS continually says he owes them money.

    Pacquiao claims he has caused irreparable damage to his image with steroid accusations.

    His ex-girlfriend has accused him of attacking her.

    A security guard has accused Mayweather of poking him in the face while making threats of bodily harm.

    The shopping list of problems goes on and on, with many individuals either trying to take a chunk of his pocket book or a chunk of his life (in prison).

    While these problems might not be the actual cause of a Mayweather loss in the ring, they certainly can lend a hand in the boxer losing his focus.

    At his age and with his level of opposition, he'll need all the focus he can muster.

1. Legacy

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    In 2006, Floyd Mayweather was hyped to face Zab Judah.

    Both were still highly-respectable fighters. They were considered the best boxing had to offer until one of them suffered an embarrassing defeat.

    Judah lost to Carlos Baldomir in January 2006.

    The fight with Mayweather went on as scheduled during April of that year, but the money suffered as a result.

    Mayweather's $6-million guarantee went down to $5 million and Judah's $3 million went down to $1 million.

    The profits suffered, but Mayweather fought and won.

    A memorable interview with Brian Kenny shows Kenny criticizing Mayweather for fighting Judah first instead of Baldomir.

    Baldomir is an unheralded opponent, but the Judah victory allows Kenny to accuse Mayweather of dodging the fight to face a losing Judah.

    Mayweather would go on to fight Baldomir and win, yet he was still criticized for not facing a top welterweight opponent.

    Mayweather defeated De La Hoya and Ricky Hatton the following year and retired.

    Critics point out that an undefeated Miguel Cotto and a tough Antonio Margarito were still left for Mayweather to defeat.

    In Mayweather's absence, Manny Pacquiao defeated De La Hoya and Rick Hatton in sensational fashion. Mayweather returned to the ring almost two years later to dominate Juan Manuel Marquez, a Pacquiao rival.

    Mayweather knew his opponent would draw comparisons to Pacquiao.

    Mayweather knew the calls for a fight between himself and Pacquiao would grow deafening upon his return.

    He came back anyway.

    Is it the money?

    That could be part of the reason, but Mayweather has enough money to not want to risk his undefeated record. What's really messing with Mayweather is that he's not respected as much as he perceives he should be.

    More often than not, Mayweather can be heard in interviews talking about how he can't win no matter how many opponents he defeats.

    He claims there will always be something wrong with his opponent.

    The opponent is never considered good enough, whether they are too small, too old or, in the case of his latest opponent, too young and inexperienced. 

    Mayweather may face Pacquiao next year, betting that a victory against the pound-for-pound king will net him the massive critical acclaim he's always argued that his legacy deserves.

    For now, Mayweather returns to face a young opponent in Victor Ortiz. Pacquiao and Khan are heavily rumored to be next in 2012.

    This type of opposition, combined with his age, may spell disaster.

    If he can beat all of them and retire without being lured back into the ring to face further rising stars, then more power to him.

    The only problem is that so few boxing stars have been able to resist the temptation.

    Roy Jones and Larry Holmes come immediately to mind. Will Mayweather join them in their decision to stay too long?

    Unfortunately, he more likely than not will.