Undefeated Floyd Mayweather Jr. will be putting his WBA and WBC Welterweight Championships on the line this weekend and Manny Pacquiao’s WBO version of the belt will be up for grabs as the two boxing stars meet at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on Saturday, May 2. This is the latest edition of the ‘Fight of the Century’ and it should still be a dramatic and compelling contest even though both boxers are past their primes.
Boxing Odds – Pacquiao vs Mayweather Jr: bet365 lists Mayweather as the favorite to win the fight 4/9 at with Pacquiao at 2/1. The odds of it going the distance are yes at 2/7 and no at 5/2
Mayweather of Grand Rapids, Michigan is 38 years old now, but he’s never dropped a professional fight as he enters the ring with a perfect 47-0 record with 26 Kos to his name. The southpaw Pacquiao is two years his junior and the native of General Santos City in the Philippines has an impressive mark of 57-5-2 with 38 Kos under his belt. This bout is for all the marbles in the welterweight division and the result will go a long way in how both of these boxers are remembered years down the road.
Pacquiao has disadvantages in the reach and height department as he’s just over 5-feet-6-inches tall while Mayweather stands 5-feet-8, making them both relatively short for the welterweight division. This is understandable in Pacquiao’s case since he was weighed little more than 100 lbs when he turned pro back in 1995. However, he’s grown over the years and consistently moved up in weight divisions. He’s also been one of the most successful boxers ever with world crowns in seven separate weight classes from flyweight to super welterweight.
The Filipino has the advantage when it comes to ring experience with 412 pro rounds to his name while Mayweather has boxed 363. Mayweather has more experience in world title fights though with 240 rounds compared to Pacquiao’s 163. Pacquiao arguably has more power in his fists than Mayweather and their speed and footwork are pretty even. Mayweather has the ability to roll with the punches better and his defensive tactics and chin are both superior than his challenger’s.
Pacquiao has been decked before and he needs to make sure that he doesn’t get careless and walk into a left hook. He knows exactly what can happen if that occurs as Juan Manuel Marquez stopped him with a sensational one-punch knockout in the sixth round of their meeting in December of 2012. That was Pacquiao’s second straight loss as Timothy Bradley beat him by a very controversial split decision just six months earlier. The third time Pacquiao tasted defeat was in 2005 when Erik Morales took a 12-roud unanimous decision from him. His two earlier losses came by stoppage in 1996 and 1999.
The Filipino fighter avenged his loss to Bradley when he beat him by a unanimous decision last year and he had already owned a pair of wins and a draw against Marquez when the Mexican stopped him cold in their fourth fight. The only boxer Pacquiao has ever faced since 1999 and not beaten was Agapito Sanchez, who fought him to a six-round draw back in 2001, which was six years after the WBO champ turned pro. Mayweather has beaten a long list of elite boxers during his career such as Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez, Shane Mosley, Oscar De La Hoya, Zab Judah, Ricky Hatton, Miguel Cotto and Marcos Maidana twice. Mayweather has been so successful since he can adapt to any style in the ring and is quite hard to hit.
Pacquiao will need to throw punches in bunches to keep Mayweather on the back foot at all times and make sure he doesn’t make any blatant mistakes. You can be assures that Mayweather will certainly make him pay for them if he does.
Written by Ian S. Palmer