FINALLY – Mayweather v Pacquiao is OFFICIAL
It’s finally on. Dubbed the “fight of the century” the long overdue but eagerly anticipated fight between the No1 and No2 pound for pound boxers on the planet is official.
It was announced by Mayweather who posted a picture of the actual signed contract online, with the words “what the world has been waiting for has arrived” he also went on to say “I promised the fans we would get this done and we did. We will make history on May 2nd. Don’t miss it.”
The first indication that this fight could be a reality was when the fighters were pictured face to face on January 27th at a Miami Heat basketball game. The pair looked friendly but in deep discussion and even embraced and shook hands before parting ways.
Like most boxing fans, I am extremely happy this fight is official as it would have been a travesty (more for Mayweather) if the fight had never been made. Regardless of the reasons why, which everyone has their own opinion on. We will now get to see what the world has waited for.
Though there are still some miserable fans who will continue to reiterate that this fight should have been made 5/6 years ago when both were in their primes. To that I would say forget about what happened in the past, what’s important is the fight will now happen and ALL the talking will end in just over two months time. So sit back and enjoy it.
The fight is destined to be an intriguing encounter of two top-level fighters with a clash of styles, including a southpaw v orthodox which will make it even more interesting. I think the fact that both are not in their prime will add an extra piece of intrigue to it.
Judging by Mayweather’s last two fights against Maidana, Floyd has clearly declined from the high standards he has set himself.
The question is how much? As he still looked a supreme skilled, top class fighter.
Though I favoured his work in the first fight, in the second, he showed he still has the quickness, reflexes and movement. It certainly didn’t look like there was anything wrong with his legs as he used the ring well and his boxing abilities were still razor-sharp.
Pacman on the other hand also has that quickness and movement but he ultimately relied upon his power.
With that being said, he has not stopped a fighter since he stopped Cotto in the 12th round in 2009.
His last six wins have been on points. That could suggest he is due a stoppage victory or he is not hitting as hard as he used to. Although he did drop Chris Algieri six times in his last fight on the way to a dominate, comfortable and relatively easy unanimous points victory.
I think one of the biggest battles will be who will win the speed factor. Especially with a southpaw v orthodox. Both will be jostling for the same space for their lead foot, so the speed and movement will be very important. It may cause a few issues early with their feet getting tangled or one stepping on the others foot as they fight for position, so that will be another thing for both fighters to think about.
It may come down to such an intricate, small, subtle but hugely important thing of who will be able to plant their lead foot first, impose themselves more and win that space.
Pacquiao will have to develop his job more to close the gap and not telegraph his lethal left hook or wind up on shots.
He will also have to work Floyd’s body and not get sucked into head hunting.
Floyd has an excellent jab but has at times opted to throw lead rights without the use of a jab. In this fight his jab will definitely have to be utalised, along with quick faints to keep Pacquiao off balance, out of his rhythm and then counter. He will also have to put his punches together more and throw some combinations as I doubt his one punch, pot shot tactics will keep an active Pacman at arm’s length.
Activity will have to be another key for Pacquiao, and with that I mean stamina. To put a dent in Mayweather who is notorious for his stamina, Manny will have to pile on the pressure from early, throw a lot of punches and maintain that pace throughout. Maidaina proved that tactic could give Floyd problems but the issue is keeping it going throughout because once you slow down, Floyd will take over, he’s a machine.
Apparently, along with negotiating the drug testing issue and the rival networks agreeing, there is no rematch arranged. So this could really be the only fight we see.
Although I feel if Floyd loses, along with the fact he will have one more fight left on his six fight Showtime deal, we may see a rematch.
If Floyd wins, he will have enough money and at last the satisfaction and the respect of his peers and maybe the fans (although I doubt that) to bow out on an excellent high.
All in all, this will be an exciting, roller-coaster two and a bit months in the lead up to this monumental showdown. It will no doubt divide opinions, change opinions and cause a fair few heated arguments in the build up. I’m sure it will definitely be one of those “where was you?” when the fight of the century happened. Lets hope these next two months fly by.