Floyd Mayweather, 38, was officially stripped of his 147-pound welterweight title today. Mayweather solidified his title, of which he is still undefeated, on May 2 when he defeated Manny Pacquiao.
Upon beating Pacquiao two months ago for the WBO welterweight title, Mayweather told ESPN reporter Brett Okamoto that he planned to vacate his other three titles so that younger fighters could have an opportunity at winning a belt:
“I don’t know if it will be Monday [May 4] or maybe a couple weeks. I’ll talk to my team and see what we need to do. Other fighters need a chance. Give other fighters a chance. I’m not greedy. I’m a world champion in two different weight classes. It’s time to let other fighters fight for the belt.”
After Mayweather failed to comply with the 4:30 ET deadline and pay the sanctioning fee of $200,000, the WBO officially stripped him of his 147-pound welterweight title.
Reporter Dan Rafael of ESPN broke the news today with a tweet:
Rafael added some additional background information in his report, saying:
“It is against sanctioning organization rules for boxers to hold world titles in multiple weight classes. The WBC and WBA have been breaking their own rules by allowing Mayweather to hold their titles, but the WBO has declined to break its rules for Mayweather and it has told him he must make a decision.”
Timothy Bradley Jr. defeated Jessie Vargas on a unanimous decision June 27, which made him the interim welterweight champion. However, due to Mayweather’s demotion — he still retains two other welterweight titles — Bradley has now been named the WBO welterweight champion.
While being stripped of a title belt is an awkward ordeal, Mayweather can’t be stripped of his unblemished record (48-0, 26 KOs).