We’ve waited over five years for Floyd Mayweather to fight Manny Pacquiao and tomorrow marks the date that it’s finally happening. The two fighters are two of the best of their generation and the two best in the weight-class during that time. Sadly we’ve had to wait until now because of various reasons.
The main reason we’ve waited is that Mayweather clearly didn’t want a piece of Pacquiao until now. Floyd may be many things, but he’s not an idiot when it comes to his brand, his image, and his legacy. He could see that Pacquiao was peaking in skill and speed when the fight was originally campaigned for in late 2009. The odds of him losing the fight then were much higher than they are now. The other reason Floyd dodged the fight is that he was hoping to increase the money he’d get. By continuing to building his brand over the last five years and building up the appetite for this fight, the potential for more money could conceivably be there.
It hasn’t exactly worked out to plan, however, as Pacqiauo has lost twice since this fight was initially dreamt up, although once was a travesty of a judges’ decision. Pacquiao did eventually gain revenge against Timothy Bradley, but it hasn’t been good for his popularity that two of his last three fights have been in Macao as opposed to the United States. Pacquiao is patriotic to his country of the Philippines, but putting on the fight away from the U.S. meant less eyeballs in this neck of the woods. It didn’t help either that Pacquiao fought lesser known fighters during that time period. Still there should be plenty of money for both fighters to take home in this one.
If you remember the great Roy Jones’ Jr. career-turning loss, you’ll remember that we all thought Roy Jones was too fast for anyone until the surprise knockout from Antonio Tarver. We didn’t see it coming, but eventually Jones’ speed was gone and then his career went down faster than Mike Tyson knocked out Michael Spinks. He was the best until that moment came and then he wasn’t. It was a sad moment as one of boxing greats went from all-time stud to old man in a split second.
Mayweather remembers that and is trying to make sure that never happens to him. While he has much better defense than Jones’ ever did, his selection of opponents has been carefully calculated. Since the public originally wanted Mayweather to fight Pacqiuaio, Mayweather has disposed of inferior fighters. We got excited when Canelo Alvarez fought Mayweather because of Alvarez’ potential, but his potential was just that, potential. Alvarez wasn’t ready to take on Mayweather and Floyd did his usual song and dance to get the 12-round decision. 12-round decisions are also how Floyd has gotten through Miguel Cotto, Robert Guerrero, and Marcos Maidana. Only an odd and borderline cheap knockout of Victor Ortiz stands as the one time Floyd didn’t go the distance in recent memory. (We’ll get back to this.)
I’d love nothing more than to watch that pompous prick Mayweather get knocked out because of how he abuses women, how he treats the media, and how he carries himself. Those reasons are why he’s such a divisive figure as a champion as opposed to champions like Tyson or Jones’, who a majority of people rooted for. Mayweather has more speed and better defense than any fighter out there, so the only hope anyone has of beaten him is to cut off his angles, corner him, and rough him up. Pacquiao might’ve been able to do that effectively five years ago, but I don’t see that happening. Mayweather’s waited until now to fight Pacqiuaio because he knows the years been worse on Paciquao’s skills than his own.
It’ll be Mayweather by decision, as it always is, but a majority of us will probably be rooting for Pacquiao. All of us will be rooting for a great fight considering it costs $100 just to watch.