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Mayweather vs Pacquiao controversy: Leonard vs Hagler all over again?

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Lee Cleveland Updated
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Former three division champion and future hall of famer Shane Mosley, who faced Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao in 2010 and 2011, respectively, recently chimed in on Mayweather vs Pacquiao which took place on May 2.

Shane, of course, lost to both legends via rather wide decisions.

Not unlike fight legend Evander Holyfield, Shane, in sharp contrast to most at ringside, thinks Manny's activity rate could have conceivably won him six or seven of the twelve rounds against Floyd Mayweather thus questioning the ultimate verdict.

Punchstats show Floyd threw more shots but Shane questions its accuracy and believes Manny unleashed more forays than his defensive-minded foe. Regardless, CompuBox is not a scorecard - It simply provides a barometer of a fighter's activity. In the pro ranks, throwing and landing more punches than an opponent by no means suggests the former is derserving of victory.

In sum, Mosley, who watched the bout live at ringside and again on television believes Mayweather vs Pacquiao could have easily been scored a draw.

Prior to the fight, Shane gave a slight advantage to the taller Mayweather, insisting Floyd's speed and movement would pose problems for Pacquiao when attempting to land flush.

Shane is not alone in his declaration that Floyd Mayweather's win was not definitive.

"I thought Pacquiao was doing well. I don't know how people scored the fight, I thought he was doing well," said heavyweight legend Evander Hoyfield said in an interview with ESPN shortly after the fight.

"The fact of the matter, you're the more aggressive one, you hit him with the shots... Pacquiao seem to hit him (Mayweather) more times than he hit Pacquiao."


He added that it takes two fighters to fight.

"You got one guy trying to catch the other guy, pretty much," Holyfield said, referring to Pacquiao. "You have one guy moving [around]."

FightSaga suggested Mayweather vs Pacquiao would be difficult to score due to the fighters' contrasting styles. Judging is subjective and officials place varying levels of emphasis on scoring criteria.

 

For the last 28 years, fans have debated with each other incessantly over the decision rendered in Sugar Ray Leonard vs Marvelous Marvin Hagler (Leonard SD 12) which remains one of the biggest controversies in professional sports.

 


Those who favor Sugar Ray (like me) believed he outboxed the Marvelous One. Like Floyd against Manny, Ray was more accurate offensively and, defensively, used superior movement to seemingly frustrate the middleweight legend who seemed to have difficulty finding the target.

But proponents for Hagler, like Pacquiao backers, insist their man was an effective aggressor, connected on harder punches and was more active than his opponent. Moreover, Pacquiao supporters will argue Manny was never in any danger but appeared to have Floyd hurt on at least one occasion just as Hagler presumably had Leonard in a precarious state at least twice in their 1987 affair.

In the years to follow, will Mayweather vs Pacquiao join Leonard vs Hagler as one of the most debated topics in sports history?

 
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