LAS VEGAS -- Perfection.
If this truly was the final fight of pound-for-pound king Floyd Mayweather's career, as he claims it will be, he will go out having put on another brilliant display, notching another easy win and finishing with a perfect record.
Mayweather did as he pleased in a one-sided rout of Andre Berto to retain the welterweight world title before a crowd of 13,395 on Saturday night at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. In doing so, the 38-year-old matched the hallowed 49-0 mark with which heavyweight legend Rocky Marciano retired.
"My career is over. It's official," said Mayweather, who spent 17 years of his 19-year career as a world champion.
All three judges had it wide for Mayweather: 120-108, 118-110, 117-111. ESPN.com had it a 120-108 shutout.
Asked what matching Marciano's record -- the best in boxing history for a fighter who retired as a champion -- meant to him, Mayweather said, "That means it's part of boxing history. Records are made to be broken. Hopefully, we can find the next Floyd Mayweather who can break the record. Right now, I only want to spend time with my family."
In his follow-up fight to his revenue record-shattering victory against Manny Pacquiao on May 2, Mayweather -- who earned another $32 million Saturday night to add to his wealth -- returned to face Berto, a former two-time welterweight titleholder who entered the bout just 3-3 in his past six fights.
The matchup had been widely panned as a mismatch. Berto, the critics said, had no prayer to win. As it turned out, he was not remotely competitive, as Mayweather was razor-sharp.
"He's a tough competitor, but experience played a major role tonight," Mayweather said.
If Mayweather's retirement holds -- and virtually everybody is a skeptic except for Mayweather and those on his team -- he will have finished his career by facing his 16th consecutive (and 24th overall) current or former world titleholder and by taking part in his 26th world title fight.
Mayweather, who won world titles in five weight classes from junior lightweight to junior middleweight, completed a six-fight, 30-month contract with Showtime/CBS that he signed in early 2013. It was a deal that earned him more than $420 million, including a record of approximately $250 million for the fight with Pacquiao.
Even though he remains at the top of his game and can still command big bucks, Mayweather insisted this was, as he said in the buildup to the fight, his "last dance."
"You got to know when to hang it up, and it's time for me to hang it up," Mayweather said. "I'm not going to be doing this when I'm 40 years old.
"There's nothing else for me to do in the sport of boxing. I made great investments, I'm financially stable, well off. I had a great career. My record speaks for itself."
Although there are legions of critics who will take issue with Mayweather's careful selection of opponents, fighting most of the big names of his era but very few when they were at their best, he dazzled and won most fights easily. And he did again against Berto, looking as sharp as ever.
He came out aggressively in the opening round, immediately throwing right hands and jabbing Berto to the body. He even landed a couple of solid left hooks as he took the fight right to Berto, who earned a career-high $4 million.
Mayweather (49-0, 26 KOs) rushed Berto (30-4, 23 KOs) to open the third round and landed a right hand, but he relied a lot on a stiff left jab. Berto, 32, of Winter Haven, Florida, also showed a quick jab but he could not land it cleanly.
Mayweather landed a right hand that appeared to hurt Berto in the fourth round as he grabbed on to Mayweather after taking the shot, which perked up the crowd.
Mayweather, of Las Vegas, had no issues against a seemingly frustrated Berto, who was warned by referee Kenny Bayless for hitting Mayweather below the belt in the fifth round.
"Andre Berto has a heart, tremendous heart," Mayweather said. "He wouldn't lay down. Good fight."
Mayweather, with quicker hands, continually beat Berto to the punch and made it look easy. He attacked the body and slipped most of Berto's shots. Even when Berto landed during an exciting exchange late in the seventh round, Mayweather got the better of it.
The pro-Mayweather crowd began to chant "TBE" -- as in Mayweather's self-given nickname "The Best Ever" -- during the ninth round as he continued to pick apart Berto.
"Experience played a big part. He's difficult to hold on to. He's slippery," Berto said. "I was confident but he has a lot of speed, real crafty. He does the little things. It is what it is.
"He's where he is for a reason. Floyd is definitely one of the best ever."
After the ninth round, Mayweather complained in his corner of pain in his left hand. He moved around the ring in the 10th round, engaging a bit less than earlier in the fight. He also was clearly feeling good about himself and was trash-talking Berto enough to get Bayless to call them together and tell Mayweather to knock it off.
"It don't matter what was said, just trash-talking," Mayweather said. "I'm used to trash-talking at the Mayweather Boxing Club."
Mayweather, well in control, played to the crowd some in the 11th round, bringing it to life. He was having fun in there and even engaged Berto during the final round to give the crowd something to remember as he landed several clean shots and then backpedaled around the ring for the final few seconds to close the show.
Mayweather's dominance was reflected in the CompuBox punch statistics. He landed 232 of 410 punches (57 percent), while Berto was limited to landing only 83 of 495 (17 percent).
When what was supposedly the last show was over, Mayweather sounded content. He had put the final touch on his record-breaking career and could walk away as one of the best in history with a gigantic bank account as the world's highest-paid athlete. If Mayweather does come back, MGM officials would love nothing more than for him to open the new 20,000-seat arena it is building behind the Las Vegas Strip, which is due to open in April.
But Mayweather claims he is simply not interested.
"I'm leaving the sport with all my faculties," he said. "I'm still smart. I'm still sharp. I've accomplished everything. There's nothing else to accomplish. I am the best."