Floyd Mayweather takes swipe at Muhammad Ali while ranking greatest boxers

Floyd Mayweather has predictably ranked himself as the greatest boxer in history – and took a swipe at Muhammad Ali in the process.

The former pound-for-pound No.1 retired from the sport in 2017 following his facile win over Conor McGregor which took his record to 50-0.

He has long considered himself the best to ever pull on a pair of gloves having won world titles in five different weight divisions.

Speaking to ESPN, and referring to himself in the third person, Mayweather said: "He’s beat more world champions than any other fighter in a shorter time and less fights than any other fighter.

"Landed punches at the highest percentage and took less punishment. He’s been world champion 18 years in five different weight divisions."

And of Ali, he added: "Ali, only one weight class and really lost to Ken Norton three times.

"What he did is he stood for a cause in an era when African-Americans didn’t stand up for their people.

"What are we judging fighters on? Because if we’re judging fighters on standing for a cause, then it’s Ali hands down.

"But if we’re talking about taking the least punishment and breaking records, it’s Floyd Mayweather.

"Muhammad Ali paved the way for me to be where I’m at today, he’s a legend.

"But when we talk about record breaking, we’ve got to talk about Ali losing his world title to a fighter with only seven fights.

"I have to take my hat off to Ali, but I didn’t give this sport 40 years to say that there’s another fighter better than me."

It was then put to Mayweather that his fights lacked excitement due to his evasive style.

But he fired back: "That’s not cool. That’s not cool.

"What I’m here to teach fighters is this: the name of the game is to hit and not get hit. It’s not about taking punishment.

"And I love Ali, but sitting on the ropes, taking punishment as far as doing a rope-a-dope – that’s not cool."

From the five boxers he was presented with, Mayweather ranked himself as No.1 followed by Roberto Duran, Pernell Whitaker, Julio Cesar Chavez and Ali.

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