Mayweather’s mother was a drug addict and his father sold drugs to support the family, eventually leading to an arrest and jail time. Mayweather began boxing as a child and dropped out of high school, deciding that boxing was the only way for him to make a suitable living.

He built up a record of 84-8 in unpaid amateur fights, winning three national Golden Gloves championships in the ‘90s. He competed in the 1996 Olympics and lost a highly controversial decision in the semifinals, which sparked outrage on the U.S. boxing team.