By Andrew Hall
I can’t believe we are just 3 weeks away from Manny Pacquao vs Floyd Mayweather Jr. This has been the most talked about fight for the past 6 years and finally it is about to happen. As a fight fan I am stoked and as a boxing observer I am even more stoked to see how these two styles clash in a fight with higher stakes than any other fight of this generation!
Who wins this fight? Does Manny overwhelm Floyd with his speed and power and score a knockout? Does Floyd showcase his power punching (often underrated) and stop Pacman with straight right hand leads? Does Manny overwhelm Floyd and the judges with great punch output and simply out hustle Floyd to a 12 round decision victory? Or does Floyd use his defensive acumen to shut down Pacman’s offense and win an easy, decisive decision?
Boxing is 90% mental and 20% physical. The one thing that is nearly impossible to ascertain is heart and desire when two boxers step into a ring. We were not able to predict that Buster Douglas would knockout Mike Tyson (though one writer got it right..One out of like 20!) because we have no way to gauge a fighters desire accurately. This my dear reader, is the key factor in this fight: who wants it more? Who is willing to risk it all to be great? Who is willing to go all in and who is willing to die? This will be the biggest determinant in who wins this fight.
When I peruse articles and videos on this fight you always here them talking about the same old stuff. They say Pacman has no defense against the right hand. They call him one dimensional and say Floyd will easily out point him! Others say that Floyd can’t fight against southpaws as well, that Pacs weird angles of attack will confuse Floyd and thus lead to his dismantling. All of this, my dear reader, is hogwash!
This fight comes down to who wants it more. Now, with that being said, what can we ascertain about this fight? The first thing is that this is a fight that Manny Pacquiao has wanted for the past 6 or 7 years. It is also a fight that Floyd Mayweather has ducked and dodged for the same amount of time. I heard Floyd Mayweather say that he won’t fight Pacquiao because he “fears for his safety”. He went on to say that he fears for his health because the results in the ring indicated to Floyd that he would be dealing with a man on PED’s (Performance Enhancing Drugs). What a compliment this was by Floyd. What person who weight trains wouldn’t like someone to walk up and say “excuse me, but are you on PED’s?” Its a compliment and Manny should take it with a grain of salt. After all, Pacquiao has passed every single drug test he has been given! Floyd, on the other hand, only fights in one city because he’s allowed to use PED’s to make his hands less likely to give in on him during the course of a bout. Don’t be fooled, my dear reader, Floyd is the real PED user in this fight!
I see a fire in Manny Pacquiao that I have not seen in a long time. The kind of fire that comes from being an underdog. The kind of fire that comes when one has been insulted and the kind of fire that results when one badly wants to win. I see Manny Pacquaio with murderous, destructive intent in his eyes. I see a man who wants to lay down the biggest ass whupping he’s ever laid out in a boxing ring!
On the other hand, when I look at Floyd Mayweather I see a man who is cornered. I see a man who is trying to do different things because he is fighting a fighter who he knows deep down is going to give him serious problems. Floyd Mayweather is chopping wood and supposedly focusing a lot on punching power for this fight. Why? Floyd fanboys say its just another easy fight! Why all the variation in his training? Why has Floyd been running all these years?
In conclusion, I”d like to say that no matter what happens in this fight, I hope for the sake of boxing that it is entertaining and a fight that will improve the status of pugilism around the world. I have tremendous respect for both men because both men have fought great fighters and have shown themselves to be the best of their respective eras and perhaps the best of all time. To the winner goes the spoils. May the best man win!
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