Las Veags - World Boxing Council champion Floyd Mayweather extended his
perfect record to 44 victories Saturday, beating Robert Guerrero by unanimous
decision in their welterweight title fight.
Mayweather, who was defending his title for the first time since serving a
jail term for domestic violence, dominated a bloodied Guerrero for most of the
fight at the MGM Grand Hotel and Casino.
All three judges scored the 12-round fight 117-111 in favour of Mayweather.
"I had a good tough battle with Robert Guerrero," Mayweather said.
"It was blood, sweat and tears tonight."
The 36-year-old Mayweather was also fighting for the first time in a year as
he improved to 44-0 with 26 knockouts. Guerrero, who had his 15-fight win
streak dating back to 2005 snapped, fell to 31-2-1, with 18 knockouts.
Mayweather spent close to three months in jail beginning in June after being
convicted of domestic violence involving the mother of his three children.
"I wouldn't wish being locked up on anyone," Mayweather said
Saturday. "That's a rough position, being locked up 23 hours a day with
one hour out."
Both fighters had their fathers working their corners Saturday.
Mayweather sacked his uncle and longtime cornerman Roger Mayweather in
favour of bringing his father Floyd Snr back for this fight.
The two fathers grabbed most of the pre-fight attention by exchanging verbal
jabs, with Ruben Guerrero calling Floyd Jnr a "woman beater" in the
build up to the bout.
Mayweather had plenty of critics heading into Saturday's fight who said
factors working against him included increasing age, the change in trainers and
the conviction and jail term.
"Everybody was saying because I am 36 that I don't have it no more,
that my defence wasn't sharp, but I proved myself," Mayweather said.
The fight started slowly, with Guerrero the aggressor and Mayweather feeling
the challenger out.
Mayweather began to seize control in the third round and dictated the pace
from there, using his superior foot and hand speed to keep Guerrero off balance.
Mayweather landed one of his hardest punches in the eighth round -- a
roundhouse right that wobbled Guerrero, whose face was starting to show the
effects of being hit with a barrage of straight rights, stinging counterpunches
and lunging jabs.
The champion also opened up a cut near Guerrero's eye in the eighth.
The ring-savvy Mayweather cruised through the middle and later rounds, using
his strong defence to slip punches on the ropes and in the centre of the ring.
Mayweather was so dominant in the later rounds that he stopped moving from
side to side in the 11th, choosing to slug it out and landing punches at will
against Guerrero, who never gave up but was hopelessly overmatched.
"He is a tough competitor. I take my hat off to him," Mayweather
The only blemish on his performance was that Mayweather, who made $32
million for this fight, failed to get the knockout.
Mayweather blamed the inability to finish Guerrero off on an injury to his
hand that he suffered in the middle rounds. "I was looking for the
knockout but I hurt my right hand," he said.
Mayweather is committed to fighting September 14 when he could possibly face
Mexico's Saul Alvarez.
Asked Saturday night if an Alvarez fight is in works, Mayweather said he
needs time to relax before thinking about his next opponent.
"We don't know who we are going to fight right now. Let me go home and
rest up first and talk it over."
The undercard featured a Mexican showdown on the "Cinco de Mayo"
Former Mexican Olympian Abner Mares captured the WBC featherweight world
title with a ninth-round technical knockout of compatriot Daniel Ponce de Leon.
The 27-year-old Mares remained undefeated as he knocked the champion down in
the second round and then again in the ninth.
He sent de Leon to the canvas early in the ninth with a thundering right
hand before referee Jay Nady halted the fight later in the round with de Leon
pinned on the ropes and absorbing some heavy blows from Mares.