Bernard Hopkins: I’d rather have Pacquiao’s legacy than Mayweather’s
You can add Bernard Hopkins to the growing list of fighters who have stated they rate Manny Pacquiao’s legacy above Floyd Mayweather’s.
The all-time great has followed the likes of Shawn Porter and Ryan Garcia in stating he would rather have Pacquiao’s career.
Mayweather, who retired undefeated and walked off into the sunset as the richest man in boxing, outpointed Pacquiao in their much-hyped May 2015 welterweight championship affair.
Not only did the American retire without having suffered a loss, but he also earned an estimated $500 million for the Pacquiao fight and $433 million for his 10th-round technical-knockout win over former UFC titlist Conor McGregor in August 2017, which turned out to be the final bout of his legendary career.
But for Hopkins, it is about fighting the best over the money.
“I’d rather have Manny Pacquiao’s legacy than Floyd Mayweather’s,” Hopkins told The Ring. “Manny fought everybody and Floyd fought guys (on his watch).”
Hopkins (55-8-2, 32 knockouts), a former undisputed middleweight champ and two-time Ring light heavyweight champ, as well as boxing’s oldest champion ever, wouldn’t go as far to say that Mayweather ducked any opponents.
“That’s debatable,” he said. “But also, I don’t think Floyd gave two you-know-whats about how people feel whether he fought the best guys or not. It was strictly business for Floyd.”
Hopkins also explained that both Pacquiao (62-7-2, 39 knockouts), 41, an eight-division champion from the Philippines, and Mayweather (50-0, 27 KO’s), had two different business approaches.
“Manny fought who his promoter wanted him to fight,” he added. “And Floyd fought the guys that were financially lucrative.”
This could partially explain why it took over five years for Mayweather and Pacquiao to finally meet in the ring. But when they did, they walked away with significantly more money than they would have generated had they met in March 2010 like initially planned.
Regardless of Mayweather’s business approach to the sweet science in the latter part of his career, Hopkins said that doesn’t take anything away from his career.
“Mayweather is still a Hall of Famer,” Hopkins continued. “To me, it makes him great and smart at the business.
“When boxing is over, we have to start looking at our bank accounts and our children. A lot of boxers had big fights throughout their career but didn’t get compensated the best way they could and should have. But they have Hall of Fame recognition.”