(Reuters) – Five-division world champion Floyd Mayweather Jr. has written off Saul “Canelo” Alvarez as just “another stepping stone, another opponent” ahead of their much-hyped super welterweight title fight in Las Vegas tomorrow.
American Mayweather will put his unbeaten record on the line when he challenges the red-haired Mexican for the WBC and WBA super welterweight crowns at the MGM Grand Garden Arena and says he is ready for anything that Alvarez throws his way.
“If the game plan is to keep pressure, I can handle it,” Mayweather, 36, said during the final news conference for what could end up being the richest fight of all time.
“If the game plan is to out-box me, nobody can out-box me. You have to be able to out-match me mentally, and I’m the strongest mental fighter in the sport of boxing. I’ve been here before so I know what it takes.
“He’s 42-0, but he hasn’t faced 42 Floyd Mayweather because he’d be 0-42. I’m at the pinnacle. I’m the face of boxing,” said the American, who prides himself on lightning hand speed and agile movement around the ring.
Widely regarded as one of the best defensive fighters of all time and long renowned for his trash-talking, Mayweather has compiled a flawless professional record of 44-0 with 26 knockouts.
“Career-wise, I’m OK, no matter what the outcome is,” he said. “I never worry about the outcome. When I go into any fight, I’m not focused on the money or anything.
“I’m focused on going out there, performing well, and giving the fans what they want to see – excitement. That’s what it’s all about; it’s about the fans winning.
“September 14 is just another stepping stone, another opponent to me. But he knows he’s facing Floyd Mayweather; I’m facing just another opponent.”
Mayweather, who is nicknamed “Money” for his flamboyant and often extravagant lifestyle, is guaranteed a record $41.5 million from Saturday’s fight while the 23-year-old Alvarez will earn $12.5 million, by far the biggest payday of his career.