It was if the posturing and preening was interrupting the ringside conversations; that’s how into the Floyd Mayweather-Andre Berto fight the crowd seemed to be at the MGM Grand Arena in Las Vegas, which was pocked with more than 3,000 empty seats.
But for a split-second in the seventh round of Mayweather’s supposed “last fight,” Berto had an ooooh moment, when he connected with a left hook to get the dormant crowd going on Saturday night. And just like that, Berto had his moment, and Mayweather returned the fight to its regularly scheduled banal rhythm.
About the only other semblance of excitement came in the 10th, when referee Kenny Bayless told both fighters to keep the chatter down.
Related » Mayweather-Berto Round-by-Round Scoring
Otherwise, what was expected is what the outcome wound up being and why Mayweather’s “historic” final fight was greeted so disparagingly.
The fight lived down to the low expectations, when Mayweather drove his pristine record to 49-0 (26 KOs) with a unanimous 12-round decision over the overmatched Berto (30-4, 23 KOs). Mayweather did some verbal jabbing with Berto, and threw in an Ali shuffle, but there was never any doubt.
Judge Adalaide Byrd had it 120-108 for Mayweather, while Steve Weisfeld scored it 118-110 and Dave Moretti had it 117-111.
It seemed more like a spirited sparring session than it did a fight for Mayweather’s WBC and WBA welterweight titles, and his 49-0 mark ties the great Rocky Marciano’s all-time undefeated mark.
Mayweather landed a total of 232-410 punches, connecting on 83-191 jabs, and 149-219 power shots. Berto landed a pathetic 17-percent of his total punches, connecting on 83-495 total punches.
Mayweather said he’s not thinking about coming back to surpass Marciano’s mark.
“This is it, this is my last fight,” declared Mayweather, a crack of emotion in his voice. “I’m financially stable, I’m well off and I had a great career. Hopefully, someday we’ll find the next Floyd Mayweather. I want to spend time with my family. I’m leaving the sport with all my faculties. I’ve accomplished everything. I don’t think I have anything else to do. I don’t want to rank myself. I am the best.”
When Berto was asked if he thought Mayweather was the best ever, the former two-time welterweight champ hedged.
“Experience played a big part,” Berto said about the fight. “I was in shape, and he’s really difficult to hold on to; he’s crafty and he was using little things to get me off my rhythm. A guy like me has a lot of pride, and a guy like Floyd has a lot of pride. I told him I was here to fight. Tonight, I thought we put on a great performance. Like I said, he is where he is for a reason. Floyd is one of the best out there for sure.”
On the undercard, Roman Martinez (29-2-3, 17 KOs) and Orlando Salido (42-13-3, 29 KOs) finished in a 12-round split draw, enabling Martinez to retain the WBO super featherweight championship. Back in April, Martinez won the first bout with a unanimous decision. This time, many thought Salido was the winner. He scored a flash knockdown in the third, though a replay showed Salido stepped on Martinez’s foot that led to it. That stirred something in Martinez, who came back to rock Salido in the fourth.
After the final bell rang, you had the feeling these two will see each other a third time.
In another exciting fight, Badou Jack made his first title defense of the WBC super middleweight title, winning a split-decision over gutsy Brit George Groves. Jack (20-1-1, 12 KOs) knocked down Groves (21-3, 16 KOs) with around 25 seconds left in the first round. From there, Groves fought back to make it interesting.
“I should have knocked him out,” Jack said. “But he was tough. George Groves is a tough fighter. I’ve heard (Julio Cesar) Chavez Jr. is interested. Maybe, Lucian Bute. But first, a vacation in Jamaica.”
Puerto Rican Jonathan Oquendo (26-4, 16 KOs) scored a mild upset, winning a 10-round super featherweight majority decision over Mexican Johnny Gonzalez (58-10, 49 KOs). Both fighters got up from knockdowns. Oquendo, a blown up featherweight, dropped Gonzalez near the end of the second. Gonzalez floored Oquendo with the first punch he threw in the first.
Despite getting two knockdowns, super welterweight Vanes Martirosyan (36-2-, 21 KOs) scraped by with a 10-round majority decision victory over Ishe Smith (27-8, 12 KOs). Judge Lisa Giampa somehow scored the fight even, 95-95. Martirosyan knocked Smith down in the third with a punch that was a little questionable, landing in the back of Smith’s head. In the eighth, Martirosyan dropped Smith again, when he caught Smith overextended on a left hook, countering with a straight right that sent Smith crashing down face first.
« Previous Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Andre Berto Results & Play-by-Play Next Pictures: Mayweather vs. Berto »