Paulie Malignaggi: “Manny Pacquiao’s speed and power won’t matter if he can't control range against Floyd Mayweather”
On the latest edition of FightSaga Radio’s “Ringside Report with Rodney and Joseph”, expert fight analyst and two-division world champion Paulie Malignaggi gave his professional assessment of the upcoming super fight between Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao.
Although many fight fans and boxing pundits have been discussing the importance of hand speed, footwork, and power in this match-up, the knowledgeable, ringside commentator claims that one specific variable will be most crucial in determining the eventual winner on May 2.
“Both Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao will have their respective attributes and strategies that they hope to execute on fight night,” affirms the Brooklyn born prizefighter.
“But at the end of the day, the ability to control range is what’s going to be most important.”
Although Paulie acknowledges the idea that anything can and often does happen in a prizefight, he clearly sees one fighter being able to control distance successfully throughout the great majority of the impending super fight.
“The primary reason why I pick Floyd Mayweather to win on May 2, is I think he has a better control of range,” claims Malignaggi. “Regardless of how fast people say Manny Pacquiao’s legs are, he hasn't exhibited many creative ways of controlling range and closing the distance.”
“I’ve noticed that Pacquiao will jump around from left to right, and then quickly try to jump into the pocket and into firing range. He’s going to have to be more creative when fighting an elite level talent like Floyd Mayweather.”
“He may be able to get away with that against other fighters, but I don’t see him getting away with just jumping into range against a fighter like Mayweather.”
The 34 year old, former WBA Welterweight title holder believes Team Pacquiao will have to be creative when attempting to unlock the “May-vinci Code” on May 2.
“Floyd’s not a flat-footed fighter and is a very good counter-puncher. So merely jumping into range may not work against a fighter with the vision and reflexes of a Floyd Mayweather Jr. If Pacquiao just tries to lunge into firing range, he may jump into a shot.”
“I’m not saying Floyd is capable of knocking Manny out with one shot, like Juan Manuel Marquez. But if you run into enough of his punches as you’re trying to close the distance, it will frustrate you and disrupt your timing and rhythm, ultimately throwing you off of your gameplan and discouraging you.”
“So it’s crucial that Freddie Roach and Manny come up with creative ways of closing the distance and controlling range against a very smart fighter like Floyd Mayweather. Without the ability to control range, it does not matter how much speed and how much power you have. None of that matters unless you can get into the proper range to land punches.”
Can Hall of Fame fight trainer, Freddie Roach, come up with a gameplan to effectively close the distance and control range against the best pound for pound fighter in the world? Fight fans will ultimately find out on May 2.