Famed Trainer Supports Floyd Mayweather Jr vs Robert GuerreroWritten by Lee Cleveland
Elite fight trainer Eddie Mustafa Muhammad likes the idea a match-up between Floyd Mayweather Jr and Robert Guerrero on May 5th... But for different reasons than Guerrero.
It's no secret Robert Guerrero's team has launched a large grassroots campaign in an effort to generate enough public interest to ultimately force a possible showdown between Floyd Mayweather Jr (42-0, 26 KOs) and their fighter, Robert Guerrero (29-1-1, 18 KO), on May 5th. And while their efforts have been impactful in building Guerrero's name, few believe Guerrero is worthy of fight the legendary Floyd Mayweather Jr and even fewer understand why some in the boxing community find Mayweather vs Guerrero compelling.
Trainer Eddie Mustafa Muhammad, in an interview with FightSaga last Friday, shed some light on this controversy and explained why Floyd Mayweather Jr vs Robert Guerrero makes sense.
Defending Mayweather vs Guerrero
While Eddie Mustafa, like the entire boxing world, supports Mayweather vs Pacquiao, he believes the megafight should take place in November instead of this summer. And while he didn't offer an explanation for suggesting November, a showdown between Mayweather and Pacquiao on May 5th seems less likely with each passing day. In addition, Mayweather's incarceration, scheduled to begin June 1, reduces the likelihood of him fighting Manny Pacquiao this summer anyway. As a result, a November showdown between the two legends may be the best option alternative to May 5th as both fighters would have adequate time to prepare for each other should Floyd Mayweather fight on May 5th and Pacquiao in June.
Given the aforementioned circumstances, Eddie Mustafa wholeheartedly supports Robert Guerrero as quality 'tune-up' for Floyd Mayweather on May 5th.
Cinco de Mayo
When asked why he endorsed Mayweather vs Guerrero, Eddie Mustafa first cited the relevance of May 5th - the confirmed date for Floyd Mayweather's return.
"...It's Cinco de Mayo. As we all know, Robert Guerrero is Mexican. Mexican Independence Day and a great fight [would] come together in Vegas perfectly. It [would bring] a lot of money to the economy and would be a joyous, festive occasion," said Eddie Mustafa.
Although Guerrero, like Oscar De La Hoya, is a Mexican-American (and not an actual Mexican citizen), the date has tremendous significance to Mexicans and Mexican-Americans alike as large segments in both groups would undoubtedly descend on Las Vegas for the fight itself or order the event via pay-per-view and rally behind Guerrero on Mexico's most cherished day.
The 28 year old Guerrero is a world champion in three weight divisions and the current interim WBA Lightweight Champion. Moreover, he's already defeated some pretty stellar opposition including Jason Litzau, Joel Casamayor, Vicente Escobedo and Michael Katsidis.
Acknowledging Guerrero's skills and achievements, Eddie stated, "Guerrero has great credentials. He beat Katsidis.. He has great credentials."
"He won't be a pushover."
And since Guerrero is a southpaw, like Pacquiao, Eddie believes fighting Guerrero prior to Manny Pacquiao would serve as good preparation for Floyd.
Some argue Guerrero, a super featherweight until 2010, would be too small for Floyd Mayweather, Jr. However, Guerrero stands 5'9", walks around at 152 lbs and is naturally large for a lightweight so a move to welterweight (147lbs) wouldn't be inconceivable if not inevitable. At welterweight, Guerrero would possibly be the bigger man against Mayweather.
"His body would allow him to hold his weight perfectly because of his height. Maybe he'll punch much harder..."
Eddie believes, sans Manny Pacquiao, Guerrero would give Mayweather his toughest fight. Citing Guerrero's experience in big fights, Eddie stated, "Guerrero has championship experience. He's had a few championship fights [and] he was very successful... so he wouldn't be intimidated. He'd come to fight."
How to Beat Mayweather
Asserting he has Floyd Mayweather Jr 'figured out', Robert Guerrero told FightSaga last month, "I know this guy like the back of my hand. Believe me - I've got Mayweather figured out. "
But in response, Eddie stated, "Everybody says the same thing about Floyd.... If I'm not mistaken, 43 have tried (and) 43 have failed."
"There's no blueprint to beat Floyd Mayweather. Me, you or anyone else in this whole planetary system has ever found a blueprint to beat Floyd. "
Mayweather vs Canelo
When asked about another popular Mexican, WBC Jr Welterweight Saul 'Canelo' Alvarez (39-0-1, 29 KO), as a possible opponent for Floyd Mayweather Jr on May 5th, Eddie asserted Canelo was too green to challenge a fighter of Mayweather's skills and experience.
"Canelo is not ready for Floyd yet. You're talkin' about a super, super, super champion in Floyd. We're just getting to really know Canelo. He's a baby. He's not ready for Floyd yet."
Eddie Mustafa Muhammad (50-8-1, 39 KO) held the WBA Light Heavyweight title from 1980-81. After retiring as a boxer, Muhammad became a trainer. He has worked with numerous fighters including Iran Barkley, Michael Bentt, Carl Daniels, Chad Dawson, Joan Guzman, Danny Romero, Ishe Smith, Johnny Tapia, James Toney, Paul Vaden, Chris Avalos, Said El Harrak, Hasim Rahman and Zab Judah.
Lee is Managing Editor of FightSaga.com, a student of the Sweet Science and longtime boxing fan.
A gym rat in the 1990s, Lee was trained by 1976 Olympic Silver Medalist Charles Mooney and several retired seasoned pros. He was also a sparring partner for former WBA Super Middleweight Champion Steve Little who upset Michael Nunn for the WBA Super Middleweight Title in '94.
Lee created FightSaga.com to honor and preserve boxing's rich heritage, chronicle the achievements of top fighters, celebrate the legacy of big fights and provide a fun, educational experience for fight fans.