“Superstars are born and not made,” says HBO’s orthodox prizefighter “Pretty Boy” Floyd Mayweather, Jr. while basking in the fine grain leather of his Rolls Royce Phantom’s elegant curved sofa.
“My whole life I thought of myself as a superstar,” he adds. As an amateur boxer he was tagged “Pretty Boy” by friends, who remained fascinated at his innate ability to constantly emerge from fights unblemished. “I really never took any abuse in boxing,” he admits. “The same way I came in, is the same way I’m going out.” Much to the contrary, the agony and face altering the 28 year-old Michigan brawler’s opponents are habitually subjected to, often leave onlookers with the thickest of skin cringing.
In the most hostile of environments, the man rated as “the world’s best pound-for-pound fighter” by The Ring magazine remains cool as a fan. Even when entering a booing arena in rival territory, he always resorts to his constant Colgate smile to fuel the rage of antagonistic crowds. Understand that scrapping is deep-rooted in his bloodline. He got a head start thanks to his dad, Floyd Mayweather, Sr., a former Welterweight contender and uncles Jeff and Roger Mayweather, former pro fighters. As Mayweather’s current trainer, Roger, a two-time world-boxing champion, has played an active role in his nephew’s success. While most babies played in the sandbox, he was willingly hitting the punching bag. Unlike most who have been forced to work dreadful jobs, Mayweather says, “I never had a nine-to-five in my life. Boxing is the only job I’ve ever had.” After pounding out the top competition at 130, 135, and 140 pounds, the World Champ has recently risen to his fourth weight class at 147 pounds (Welterweight).
Listen closely to Mayweather in conversation and you’ll notice that a frequently stressed word in his vocabulary is “business.” Not only is he the “People’s Champ” but the CEO of Mayweather Promotions and Philthy Rich Records as well. Up to bat for Philthy Rich is “H-Flo,” a “total package” artist.
“H-Flo, likes American cars,” Mayweather says. “I asked him if he wanted a Mercedes, but he got the 300 M, on 22s. All of my employees, even my fighters, have Mercedes. The only one in my family who has a Lexus is my mother. I always get her a Lexus. My sister got her second Mercedes. Her first one was a little small Mercedes, because you got to crawl before you walk, but she’s slowly moving up.”
No mater how preoccupied he gets with his demanding day-to-day activities, Mayweather puts his family first. It’s 7 p.m. and his personal driver, “53,” (the man in charge of the champ’s automotive collection) cautiously drives the devoted father through his second home city of Las Vegas to aid his son with “important” homework. Mayweather follows in the tradition of his legendary predecessors Muhammad Ali and Joe Lewis—both dedicated family men, who in their heyday also owned a Rolls Royce or two. “Who doesn’t like the lavish life? If you can afford it, why not…? This is my second Phantom,” he says.