Friday, April 30, 2010

Mayweather v. Mosley

Tomorrow night two of my favorite fighters in boxing will finally meet in the ring in Floyd Mayweather and Shane Mosley. I have read every article possible and every analysis and I will certainly after writing this change my opinion the very last minute up to the fight. I am torn for one, second there are many variables that contribute to this blockbuster match up. Regardless I am going to give you a prediction as promised as much as it pains me.

A look at Mayweather:

Mayweather is hated. I get that, however it is a persona and despite what other writers have experienced from the man himself, I do think it is pure politics. Putting that aside the intangibles are in favor of Mayweather. I give a slight edge to him in speed. When it comes to ring generalship Mayweather can make a ring appear much larger with his defensive capabilities and slickness. He also has the favor of being the younger of the two fighters. Throughout his entire career when the spotlight has been on him Mayweather shows up fight night in the best shape imaginable. It cannot be disputed that Mayweather is no slouch in regards to stamina.

The question in my mind is will he be able to afford analyzing his opponent in the ring as he has been want to do later on in his career? It can be argued that this preferred style choice has led Mayweather to "give away" rounds Ex. his fights with both Zab Judah and Oscar De La Hoya. Mayweather in order to win against Mosley will have to make a choice sooner than later. It is safe to assume Mosley will be "up" from his win over Margarito and looking to inflict a considerable amount of pain to Mayweather's body. A task many fighters have attempted in the past with perhaps only Jose Luis Castillo being the one to effectively succeed. It will be up to Mayweather to find range with his straight right hand, a punch that has historically bothered Mosley (Forrest, Wright) and avoid the brutal left hook Mosley has used to destruct Ricardo Mayorga, Fernando Vargas and Antonio Margarito. The check hook that Mayweather used to oust Hatton if landed will only slightly effect the sturdy chin of Mosley, so a rare combination from Mayweather might be his best bet to maintain the distance he prefers when fighting.

In this particular match-up Mayweather is going to have to be as accurate as ever while being as mindful as ever of Mosley's comparable speed and power. Mayweather's keys to victory will be starting early, using and controlling distance while baiting Mosley into allowing counter punching opportunities. His speed combined with accuracy will give Mosley fits throughout this fight.

A look at Mosley:

Mosley has the heart of a lion and the determination of well the most determined m-fer you have ever met. I am with Doug Fischer on his analysis that Mosley is being grossly overlooked. It is in fact down right insulting to Mosley's resume and the perseverance Mosley has exemplified throughout his career. I, however am not a betting man, so let's stick to the match-up.

Mosley is the bigger man. Let's not putz around this. I find it odd many people aren't stating that consistently, however I guess some calling him a "true welterweight" accounts for it. Although both men have come up from lighter weights Mosley undoubtedly is more comfortable at 147. He is a known strong fighter meaning his natural body lends itself to be stockier and more compact. I think this is the core to his strategy in the ring. He needs to mount an effective attack to Mayweather's body restricting the movement of his opponent. He will need to apply pressure to Mayweather followed by a double hook combination that was a preferred choice of his earlier in his career.

I am not of the school of thought that the blueprint to beating Mayweather is to just bum rush him or smother him. This won't be Mosley's key to victory. He needs to close the distance, but the with movement and disrupting Mayweather's preferred rhythm. Mosley is highly underrated for his boxing IQ and with the help of Nazim Richardson (who I feel is this X-factor) in his corner I don't doubt they will have various game plans. The one issue glaring issue is Mosley's jab. It would be the most effective deterrent against Mayweather, but as I believe Emanuel Steward has stated often in his analysis of Mosley, it is not a stifling jab that he throws. Over his career Mosley has even lightened up on it preferring for various leads and getting away from a stiff textbook jab. I don't think it will be a factor in this fight unless he changes his technique.

Final Analysis:

My early inclination was that Mayweather would outbox Mosley in a closely contested and quite possibly highly disputed decision victory. Mosley's last fight with a boxer-puncher was Cotto and that fight although close was a loss. It is reasonable to conclude that Mayweather with his ring intelligence, gifted boxing skills and defensive tendencies will be able to thwart any aggression by Mosley.

After much consideration though I believe Mosley has the size, speed and sheer will power that will disrupt and perhaps hurt Mayweather. Mosley's ability to work the body, mix up his punches and throw combos effectively will give the normally comfortable Mayweather a great deal to think about in the ring. And when that time comes for Mayweather to face the prospect of defeat, how will he respond? We don't know. Mayweather has yet to be truly challenged mentally in the ring. Will he throw caution into the wind if he falls too far behind?

My guess is he won't. Mayweather has been hard-wired since birth not to get chin checked. He is a master in the craft of boxing, but Mosley is not a novice in this regard. I think Shane Mosley will be active enough to hand Floyd Mayweather his first loss by split decision or late round technical knockout. Shane's a fighter, he fights like dying isn't a consequence in life and that is his trump card.

Don't color me surprised or a hater if Mayweather wins though as stated above he has many paths to a victory. I just have a gut feeling Mosley will find a way. (Then to counter that Mayweather has found a way to win against everyone before Mosley.) I don't appreciate people who just want to see Mayweather lose and are picking Mosley. And I certainly don't remember Mosley receiving this hype from fans before facing Margarito. Making this decision is forced, I really feel it is a true toss up. I would rather have both men come out on top, unfortunately that is not possible. The more I think about it honestly will not be fun to watch. Hopefully fighting one another will bring out the best in both fighters; we will see a new side of Mayweather and be reminded of why we admire Mosley so much.

No matter what, tomorrow we will be historic. Shane Mosley vs. Floyd Mayweather on HBO Pay-Per-View

I am Frank Chow and I approved this message

To read expert analysis check out the after reading Freddy Roach on HBO Boxing I might eat my words!, Ring Blog, Dan Rafeal, Kevin Iole and Maxboxing.This is also replaces my normal Friday Fashion Blogging.

Update: Mayweather wins by Unanimous Decision. Floyd got checked and unlike my prediction that he would become more defensive, the test made him a better and more aggressive fighter. It was truly an amazing performance. Shane midway through had the look on his face like he did against Winky Wright. Troubled. Floyd showed superior accuracy, speed and ring intelligence, but the most surprising part to me was midway through the fight Floyd came across as the stronger of the two men. My prediction as I stated was forced, I have been following both Shane and Floyd since early on and never wanted this fight to happen, however I am glad it did. Shane showed us his punching power and excitement in Round 2 followed by a never ending determination and Floyd proved he has heart and the ability to back up his mouth when faced with adversity. Initial reaction after watching the fight, Floyd Mayweather might be the best fighter of my era. Who is next? The question was posed about Pac-Monster and I hope that fight happens. Unlike this fight, I want Pac-Man and Mayweather to go head to head. The styles match up is intriguing. Pac-Man has the weight of a nation on his shoulders whenever he goes in a ring. Mayweather has proven he can handle a true welterweight. Let's hope they can reconcile their differences, fore go politics and meet in the ring. Till then, I will appreciate the greatness that I just witnessed.

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