I trained Floyd Mayweather Jr and Devin Haney – but the most talented boxer I worked with was a forgotten world champion


Jeff Mayweather has worked with some seriously talented boxers including his nephew Floyd Mayweather Jr and Devin Haney.

But the fighter that stood out the most in his mind was the ‘Towering Inferno’ Celestino Caballero.

Caballero was a dominant force at super bantamweight in his prime


Caballero was a dominant force at super bantamweight in his primeCredit: getty

The Panamanian puncher won world titles at super bantamweight and featherweight.

However, he never became a big star outside of his home country.

At 5ft 11in, he was exceptionally tall and rangy for his weight, yet despite his clear advantages, Caballero preferred to duke it out on the inside.

This led to several memorable wars with the likes of Steve Molitor, Francisco Leal and Jonathan Victor Barros.

Caballero was widely considered to be the premier fighter at 122lbs in the mid-to-late 2000s, although the relatively low profile of the super-bantamweight division means few remember his name outside of the most hardcore of boxing fans.

He made a serious impression on Mayweather though, who insists Caballero had something ‘different’ to every fighter he ever trained.

“I would probably say Celestino Caballero,” he told talkSPORT.com when asked who the most talented fighter he had ever worked with was.

“I won a world title with him. Shannon Briggs is also one of the most talented heavyweights in history and also one that you probably don’t know of Sultan Ibragimov.

Jeff Mayweather worked with his nephew Floyd Jr for a short period


Jeff Mayweather worked with his nephew Floyd Jr for a short period

“But I think that Celestino was a little different than all the guys that I trained. He was a 122-pounder, six foot tall, but he fought like he was a smaller guy, he loved to fight inside.

“But he knew how to do it. He knew how to get his shots off and then get out. And he won the world title five times so that speaks volumes.”

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Jeff worked with his Floyd Jr for a short period in the late 90s.

He joined his camp as a pad man and adviser, making a three-percent cut of his nephew’s purses before he was dismissed in December 1999.

These days he is one of the head coaches at the Mayweather Gym in Las Vegas.

During his accomplished career as a trainer, Jeff has cornered multiple former and current world champions including Shannon Briggs, Sultan Ibragimov and Haney.

Jeff worked with the latter for three years alongside his brother Floyd Mayweather Sr when Haney first turned over as a pro.

Meanwhile, he trained Ibragimov and Briggs in the twilight of their careers.

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