Mayweather vs Pacquiao prediction: Why Manny faces an uphill battle
Now that the biggest fight in history has been made, fans and experts can start the fun and exciting part of hyping the event via articles, conversations and chat rooms, and debating possible outcomes.
Floyd Mayweather vs Manny Pacquiao - Who do you think will win May 2nd?
In the past, many critics have given Freddie Roach a lot of credit when it comes to developing a game plan for opposing fighters. Roach is one of the best at studying fighters and he'll likely devise the best possible strategy for his top pupil, Manny Pacquiao.
Floyd Mayweather Sr. on the other hand, doesn't appear to be much of a strategist. He likes to brag about his training prowess but never seems to have the substance to back it up. He trained his son early in the latter's career before giving up his status as chief second to his brother Roger. Now, the elder Mayweather is in charge again but his name and reputation are primarily based on his son’s success, not so much because he is a great trainer.
If we remember back to the last time he was in the corner opposite of Pacquiao and Roach, his fighter, Ricky Hatton, suffered one of the most brutal, elite-level knockouts in recent history.
Nevertheless, Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao are very experienced so Mayweather vs Pacquiao will not be won or lost because of the trainers.
The outcome will be determined by the fighters' strengths and weaknesses, and the choices they make in the ring on May 2nd.
Skills and technique
Floyd Jr.’s abilities are far superior to anybody else in the game right now. He does so many things so well and his opponents have not been able to keep up. His ability to change his approach throughout the fight makes it very difficult to conceive a winning a strategy because Floyd can make a lot adjustments on the fly.
We have all heard the saying “offense sells tickets, and defense wins games,” in reference to most team sports and it is nearly an absolute in the sport of boxing.
Floyd Mayweather Jr. has mastered so many defensive techniques that it is almost impossible to knock him out or even land cleanly.
It all starts with his feet.
We saw how Erislandy Lara circled Canelo Alvarez and controlled the ring with his foot movement. The difference between Lara and Mayweather (as we saw when Floyd fought Canelo), is that Floyd knows when to move and how far to move without wasting his movement.
Floyd is comfortable at close range because he can bend his knees, slip, block, smother, fight off the back foot, and drop into his “Philly Shell,” among other tactics to avoid punches. Lara, on the other-hand, can only move his feet and block with his hands up high.
Having mastered so much defensively not only makes Floyd more comfortable at close range but also allows him to conserve energy. With his defense and footwork, Floyd Mayweather controls the range of the fight better than anyone else.
In order to defeat Floyd, Manny Pacquiao must pressure Mayweather without getting reckless. Manny has to be able to use his feet to set up the range, and it will not be easy.
Pacquiao should try to circle to his right and keep his front foot on the outside of Floyd’s in the traditional way we see southpaws fight orthodox fighters.
Manny’s speed will play a big part in the outcome but will he have time to mount his attacks?
Look for PacMan to unleash his lead left hand when he steps to his right. We've also seen Manny successfully land his lead right hook over his opponent’s jab and this shot may be available to him because Floyd hasn’t fought opponents with explosive good right hooks and Manny's quickness.
It is critical for Pacquiao to never allow Floyd to land shots for free. Each time Mayweather hits Manny, the Filipino should fire back with a combination immediately. If Manny can do that the entire 12 rounds, he will break up Floyd’s rhythm.
We saw Robert Guerrero fire back to good effect at Mayweather in the first round of their 2013 fight. However, after the first stanza, Floyd started taking free shots and there was no return fire.
If Manny can fire back all night long, he may eventually force Floyd into a dog fight which is exactly what he wants.
For Pacquiao to have a chance, he has to have his feet in the right place to be able to use his strengths. There’s nobody in boxing who has better footwork than Floyd Mayweather. He controls the distance of the fight with small but calculated movements, and he can move in all directions.
Manny will be fighting an uphill battle. Position and range are everything and Floyd knows how to control them both.
Manny’s footwork should be the focus of their strategy. He needs force Mayweather into a fight (instead of a boxing match) and it won’t happen if Manny can’t get into position, and Freddie Roach is undoubtedly well aware of that and more.
It'll be interesting to see what strategy the Hall of Fame trainer formulates.
Mayweather vs Pacquiao will be a fight to remember.
Mayweather vs Pacquiao | News
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