Boxing: Mayweather insists Berto will be his last foe

Floyd Mayweather (left) and Andre Berto facing off during a press conference to officially announce their Sept 12, 2015, fight.
Floyd Mayweather (left) and Andre Berto facing off during a press conference to officially announce their Sept 12, 2015, fight.PHOTO: AFP

LOS ANGELES (AFP) - Outspoken welterweight king Floyd Mayweather insists his September 12 showdown with Andre Berto will be his last bout.

"Nobody knows what the future holds, but right now, I'm cool and comfortable and having no second thoughts at all about retirement," Mayweather said at an open workout in Las Vegas on Wednesday.

"I had a good career, I won every world title, but boxing is wear and tear on the body.

"It's time to hang 'em up. I'm looking forward to working with some up-and-coming kids, going on walks and taking vacations."

It is a vision of retirement few who have watched his career can really picture for the ultra-competitive American, who will be trying to equal Rocky Marciano's legendary record of 49-0.

A chance to go to 50-0 could prove irresistible, as could the chance to inaugurate the MGM Grand's new 20,000-seat arena in Las Vegas next year.

But for now the 38-year-old Mayweather says he's glad his success gives him the chance to decide when to quit the ring - a choice many in the sport are denied.

"I've truly been blessed," he said. "I've taken my time, kept my eye on the prize and done what I've had to do," he said. "So I'm able to make a choice when to retire. Most fighters really couldn't.

"Boxing has always been work to me, a job," he said. "If I could say anything to a youngster taking up boxing it would be to be smart and not take a lot of punches.

"It's called the sweet science for a reason. Hit and not be hit, make a lot of money without taking a lot of punishment. That's what it's about."

That slick defensive style has made Mayweather a target for some critics, as his choice of 40-1 underdog Berto for the bout touted as his last.

"Berto can fight," Mayweather said of the former welterweight world champion, who battled a severe shoulder injury two years ago but returned to knock out Josesito Lopez in March.

"He's hungry. He comes to wage a war. There is never a dull moment when he fights, so I expect a hell of a fight out of him," Mayweather said of Berto, who brings a record of 30-3 with 23 knockouts to the fight.

"We'll see how it all plays out." Mayweather said the reaction to his superfight with Manny Pacquiao in May showed he'd be criticized no matter who he fought.

"My last fight, all you guys put Pacquiao on a pedestal and look what happened," he said. "I went in there and did what I needed to do, which is win.

"This fight, no matter who the opponent, somebody would have something critical or negative to say. Some people are never satisfied."