|Floyd Mayweather||Manny Pacquiao|
|Record||47-0, 26 KOs||57-5-2, 38 KOs|
|Weight||146½ (last fight)||143 ¾ (last fight)|
|Residence||Grand Rapids, MI Las Vegas, Nevada||General Santos City, Philippines, Los Angeles, CA|
|Last fight||UD 12 Marcos Maidana (Sept. 13, 2014)||UD 12 Chris Algieri (Nov. 23, 2014)|
I don’t care how we got here or who did or didn’t agree to whatever: we’re here. The most anticipated fight in almost 30 years. Manny vs. Floyd. Mayweather vs. Pacquiao.
Boxing Ability: Pacquiao is underrated as a boxer. He can get in and score at will against most fighters. Mayweather isn’t most fighters. He’s tough to hit and can score at will.
ADVANTAGE: Mayweather. In terms of boxing ability, nobody wearing gloves today even belongs in the same breath as Mayweather.
Defense: This isn’t even close. Floyd Mayweather is, at the very least, the best defensive fighter since a young Pernell Whitaker. Pacquiao’s defense is better than he gets credit for and he moves like a cat, but I can’t think of three fighters in the history of the sport that I’d take defensively over Money.
ADVANTAGE: Mayweather. I’ll say it again: In terms of defense in the ring, nobody wearing gloves today even belongs in the same breath as Mayweather.
Power: This is clearly Manny’s strength. He hits like a mule, and fast. Although he hasn’t KO’d anyone in almost 5 years, he put Chris Algieri on the canvas SIX times in his last fight, and power is always the last thing to go. Mayweather’s power is underrated, but even without the hand issues he has experienced, make no mistake about who the puncher is in this one.
ADVANTAGE: Pacquiao. He’s one of the most devastating punchers ever for a little man.
Chin: This is really hard to gauge. Manny usually has a great chin, but was knocked cold by Juan Manuel Marquez in grim fashion. Conversely, the only shot I can remember Mayweather REALLY taking was against Shane Mosley, but he recovered.
ADVANTAGE: I’m going to say Mayweather but again, he’s so hard to hit that there isn’t a lot of data on him being really rocked.
Ring Presence: Floyd knows going into this one that he is not going to psyche out Manny Pacquiao. On the other hand, Manny knows that Floyd is not going to be intimidated by his power for one second.
Heart: Again, both guys are who they are because of their heart. Make no mistake about it, Floyd got caught by Mosley and stayed in there. Pacquiao is relentless.
Corner: Floyd Mayweather Sr. was a fine fighter, but isn’t much of a corner man. Across the ring, Freddie Roach is one of the best to ever do it.
ADVANTAGE: Pacquiao. Mayweather Sr. could get Junior in trouble if he gets bombed.
Analysis: This is the greatest fight perhaps since Mike Tyson was in his prime, and certainly the most hyped since then. While Manny is a fast worker, I see Floyd picking Manny off at will early on. However, they are both getting older and can’t move the way they did five years ago. That could prove to tip the scales in Pacquiao’s favor. I think around the 5th or 6th round, Mayweather is going to get greedy, and getting cute when you’re in there with a guy that has two sledgehammers for fists isn’t wise. I suspect Floyd is smarter than that – and to cut through the BS, you’d damn well better believe that Floyd Mayweather respects Manny Pacquiao’s punching power. If he survives that, he cruises to an easy unanimous decision. If he gets caught, Pacquiao hits much harder than Mosley, and Pacquiao stalks a man in trouble like a young Tyson. Vegas is Floyd’s town, so a knockout it’s the only way Manny walks out a victor.