Mayweather vs Pacquiao: Will Manny outbox the boxer?
Will fight fans see a reversal of form on May 2 when boxing's two biggest titans clash, Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao?
Earlier this month, FightSaga, in an article entitled 'Floyd aggressively brawls and Manny moves and boxes?'', alerted readers not be surprised if conventional wisdom takes a backseat to unconventional reality.
Conventional wisdom tells us the skillful Mayweather will use his boxing ability, precision punching and defensive prowess to pile up points while Pacquiao will use his aggression, punching power and footwork to effectively trap his elusive opponent and land thudding powershots.
Boxer vs slugger?
Perhaps we'll see the consummate boxer versus the explosive, offensive-minded brawler but which role will Manny and Floyd assume?
Pacquiao's trainer Freddie Roach insists his man can outbox Floyd if need be.
"I don't think Floyd has the background or the boxing ability that Manny has," Roach said in a recent interview with Dyan Castillejo of ABS-CBN News.
"I think Manny is the much better boxer, because he's had someone to teach him along the way. Mayweather, I think, he trains himself."
"He does [the shoulder roll] over, and over and over again," said Roach. "I know when he does it. I showed it to Manny, how to take that away from him. I think Manny has strong legs, and I think that's the difference with him, too. I think Manny will overwhelm him with movement."
For all of his explosiveness and offensive firepower, Manny Pacquiao has superb hit-and-move boxing ability.
Pac-Man exhibited, perhaps, the best showcase of his technical prowess when he faced the taller, rangier Brandon Rios in 2013 and cruised to a lopsided decision verdict.
"No fighter looked more sensational than Pacquiao the other night," stated Mike Tyson weeks after the bout.
Manny Pacquiao used speed and impeccable footwork to box rings around his younger, much larger foe.
It was textbook boxing at its best; a masterful performance and a wonderful exhibition of quickness and rhythm.
And the 12th and final round was, perhaps, Manny's best. Some believed Pac-Man could have stopped Rios had he tried but Manny chose a more cautious approach.
"In the last round I didn't want to get careless so I backed off a little bit and gave him a chance to finish.... Why be careless like the last fight with Marquez?," stated Pacquiao afterwards.
"I trained my heart out. Manny is quick. I did train for quickness, but he is so quick," Rios stated after the loss.
Rios' trainer, Robert Garcia, added, "He did great. I think we saw the best Pacquiao today. He is a great person. We respect him for everything he has done in an out of the ring."
Can Manny Pacquiao use his boxing ability to outbox the consummate boxer?
Don't be surprised if Manny hits and moves while Floyd applies aggression and attempts to land powershots.