Floyd Mayweather has never
lost a professional boxing match.
His last loss in any match came in
the semifinals of the 1996 Olympics
in Atlanta.
The fighter who beat him was
then 27-year-old Serafim Todorov,
a Bulgarian boxer who was
considered one of the best and
most experienced boxers in the
Sam Borden of the New York
Times caught up with Todorov, and
his life couldn’t be more different
than Mayweather’s since the fight.
While Mayweather is now
the highest-paid athlete in
the world, Todorov lives on a
monthly pension of $435. He and
his wife are both unemployed
after working at supermarkets
and sausage factories, Borden
reports. Todorov’s neighborhood
in Bulgaria is ridden with drug
dealers and “underworld bosses”
who have offered Todorov
positions, but he has turned them
It’s a far cry from where Todorov
was in the 1996 Olympics. Todorov
beat Mayweather in a close 10-9
decision, which was later appealed
by Mayweather and the US team,
who believed that Bulgarian judge
Emil Jetchev was judging unfairly.
According to Borden, Todorov
had a chance to cash in on his
win. He says he was approached
by three men after the fight who
offered him a professional contract,
but he turned them down outright.
Here’s how Borden tells it:
The other two men leaned in,
one of them holding a pen. But
Todorov pushed it away.
“Without considering, I said no,”
he said. “I just said it quick, like
that. No.”
He looked down. “You know
what happened next? The two
men went over to Floyd and
started talking in English.”
Todorov says he later had an
offer on the table to transfer his
nationality to Turkey for the 1997
world championships. If he had
won the gold, Turkey would have
paid him $1 million. But the deal
fell through at the last minute.
He has barely competed since.
“It was stupid. I came back and I
found hell,” Todorov said.

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