Manny Pacquiao: First three rounds against Floyd Mayweather, vital?Written by Leroy Cleveland
Fresh off his impressive, dominant performance over Robert Guerrero, WBA 'regular' welterweight champion Keith Thurman insists Manny Pacquiao will need to employ a high workrate to defeat Floyd Mayweather on May 2.
In addition, he stated Mayweather is usually vulnerable early on but is excellent at making adjustments towards the middle rounds.
Is Floyd most vulnerable early and will Manny go out of his way in an attempt to secure the first three rounds and enter Round 4 with a 30-27 lead?
How many times have we seen a fighter lose because he gave away the first two or three rounds trying to adapt to his opponent's style?
Do Manny & Co. think they can catch Floyd cold in the opening minutes?
Keith Thurman is correct in suggesting Floyd Mayweather is a bit of a slow starter.
Who remembers that wicked punch from Marcos Maidana that rocked Floyd with fewer than five seconds left in Round 3 of their rematch? Floyd was so impacted by the shot, he appeared to voluntarily take Round 4 off to clear the cobwebs. And in their first fight, a strong case could be made for Maidana winning four of the first six rounds.
Two of the three judges gave Robert Guerrero the opening round against Floyd two years ago and Shane Mosley staggered and hurt a smiling 'Money May' several times in the second round of their 2010 affair but was unable to close the deal.
In Mayweather vs De La Hoya, Oscar won two of the first three rounds on two judges' cards while Zab Judah, a year prior, started strongly against Floyd in their 2006 encounter. It appeared that Judah even scored a knockdown in the second round when Mayweather's glove touched the canvas; however, referee Richard Steele ruled it a slip.
Floyd Mayweather doesn't always start tentatively as we saw in his bouts with Canelo Alvarez and Juan Manuel Marquez. However, as Thurman suggests, Mayweather does seem more vulnerable early.
Will Pacquiao & Co. make it a point to pocket the first three rounds while Floyd attempts to adapt to Manny's southpaw stance, speed and footwork?
Should Manny be instructed to win the first three rounds at all cost? And should he take risks early on he wouldn't normally take?