Floyd Mayweather is one of the best boxers ever to grace the ring. Although he's highly regarded for his undefeated record and his status as a cultural figure, the fighter believes that his independent spirit leads to him being overlooked by award committees.
"I love LeBron James, but when we talking about Athlete of the Decade, that's me," Floyd said. "That's me. Hands down."
Mayweather went on to explain that he's dominated the sport of boxing since he turned pro in 1996 until now. He also feels like he's made the correct business moves outside of the ring that should generate him praise from decision-making boards.
"We talking about from 1996 to 2020 and I've never received Athlete of the Decade," Floyd continued. "At the top of Forbes and I'm my own boss."
Floyd feels like he's been snubbed for this award and similar recognitions because no powerhouse sponsorships back him. The boxing great claims that if he chose to be an athlete under a certain umbrella rather than do short-term brand partnerships to maximize his money, then those companies would've lobbied for him to be named Athlete of the Decade.
"No Gatorade behind me, no Sprite behind me, no Nike behind me," Floyd said. "You got to realize, these are billion-dollar companies. And we like to call it 'placement.' So if they paying—you get what you want if you paying enough. But if we going off just honestly, I'm the Athlete of the Decade. Of the last two decades actually."
Floyd Mayweather shifted the culture of boxing. He has an undefeated 50-0 record and has competed as the champion for most of his career in multiple divisions. Although people may criticize him for "hand-picking" his fights, this is no different than the player-control era that LeBron James helped usher in during his time with the NBA.
As far as LeBron, he went on to eight straight NBA Finals from 2011-2018, bringing the Cavaliers their first ring with a 3-1 series comeback over the 73-9 Golden State Warriors. Also, in the past decade, James won 3 of his 4 NBA MVPs. Similar to Floyd, he's started his own multimillion-dollar business off the court while taking control of his career. He's also been named Athlete of the Year three times while Floyd has never once received this honor.