Undefeated welterweight world champion Floyd Mayweather has started the promotion his Sept. 12 fight against Andre Berto, defending his less than popular choice for his supposed final opponent and also throwing in a shot but praising UFC Women's Bantamweight Champion Ronda Rousey.
Last month at the ESPY’s, Rousey, who won the ESPY for Best Fighter, was upset that Mayweather said he didn't know who she was and took the chance to comment at his domestic violence record.
"I wonder how Floyd feels being beat by a woman for once," Rousey said. "I'd like to see him pretend to not know who I am now. I know for damn sure that he knew who I was, because he was running against me for Best Fighter that year and he has signed MMA fighters.”
Mayweather (48-0, 26 KOs) complimented Rousey during an interview on ESPN, offering his congratulations to Rousey and the MMA, saying she deserved the ESPY award this year. Mayweather has won six ESPYs for best fighter.
But when pressed about Rousey’s comments about him, Mayweather mentioned how much money he made this year.
“I’ve yet to see any MMA fighter, or other boxer, make over $300 million in 36 minutes,” Mayweather said. “When she can do that, then call me.”
Rousey improved her record to 12-0 after a 34-second knockout over Bethe Correia at UFC 190.
Mayweather’s bout against Berto (30-3, 23 KOs) is the last in his lucrative six-fight deal with Showtime/CBS that he signed in 2013. He has won each of previous five bouts by decision.
“I don’t know why, but I’m just training a lot harder for this fight,” Mayweather said. “I just want to go out with a bang, I guess.
"And there’s going to be blood. There’s going to be knockdowns, and there’s going to be blood. A lot.”
Mayweather last fought in May and earned a 12-round unanimous decision over Manny Pacquiao, retaining the WBA and super welterweight WBC titles and winning the WBO championship from Pacquiao.
The fight broke pay-per-view and live-gate records and generated more than $600 million in revenue, but Mayweather was stripped of his World Boxing Organization belt after missing the deadline to pay the sanctioning body a $200,000 fee.
The 31-year-old Berto last fought in March, scoring a sixth-round TKO over Josesito Lopez, winning the interim WBA Welterweight title. Berto is just 3-3 in his last six fights.
- Scooby Axson