By Jack Oakley
I struggle to comprehend the argument that Floyd Mayweather deserves the criticism aimed at him for ‘running away’ from Manny Pacquiao on May 2nd.
Many casual boxing fans were disappointed in Mayweather’s performance, but what did they expect? He is an artist, and the defensive skills that he demonstrated last night were a masterpiece. He once again found a way to win, and executed his plan perfectly in order to extend his unbeaten record to 48-0.
He’s beaten undefeated fighters like Ricky Hatton. He’s beaten Boxing legends like Oscar De La Hoya. He’s beaten sluggers like Marcos Maidana (twice). And now he’s beaten his P4P rival and arch nemesis for the past decade in Manny Pacquiao.
Mayweather may not be everybody’s cup of tea; he certainly wasn’t in the MGM Grand during the fight, but he was effective, and deserved to win the fight.
He rarely allowed Pacquiao to execute his game plan, which was to pin him down and throw a number of combinations. Even when Mayweather was trapped, he ducked and weaved out of range before Manny could land anything significant.
And let’s be honest, who would honestly want to stand and trade with Manny Pacquiao?
Everybody enjoys an exciting fighter, but anyone with an ounce of ambition would rather be a champion than an exciting loser, and you can understand Frank Warren comparing Mayweather to Chelsea FC. Both are solid, measured, and most importantly, effective.
He well and truly put to bed the endless argument that he is the best Pound-for-Pound boxer of his generation, and his 48-0 record justifies him being mentioned in the same breath as the likes of Muhammad Ali, and Sugar Ray Robinson, as the best fighters of all time.
Mayweather moved one step closer to Rocky Marciano’s unbeaten record of 49-0, and after admitting that he has one more fight left before retiring, he has plenty of options.
His business head might think that a rematch with Manny Pacquiao is the best option, and if he can earn upwards of another $200m, that could be viable. But Floyd also likes to beat the best, and he could look to capture one final belt from either Kell Brook, or Keith Thurman before hanging up his gloves.
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