Mayweather Jr. vs. Maidana: Did Floyd really gift Maidana and the fans the toe-to-toe action?
It’s no secret that Floyd Mayweather Jr. is a virtuoso when it comes to moving, defending, and making his opponent look inadequate. Sure he fights word class champions, and many of them are truly deserving of that opportunity, but aside from Castillo way back in the day, there has not been a challenger that made Floyd work harder than a routine sparring session.
Yesterday, Marcos Maidana did just that. Forget the fact that he came out swinging and did not run of ouf gas until the last second of the last round, and forget his stunning ability to walk through and keep pressing no matter what he himself gets hit with, in his fight against Mayweather Jr. what surprised me, was just how indifferent he looked and performed when facing someone as elusive as Mayweather Jr.
Talking before the fight is one thing, and even trying to persuade the people watching the fight by showing off, sticking out one’s tongue, or even in some cases humping their opponent in the ring, but when it comes to making Mayweather look vulnerable, everyone failed without any glimpse of hope.
Maidana on the other hand, was able to pressure Mayweather Jr., and force him into any corner or side of the ring that Marcos wanted to, and to add insult to injury, he was able to land a shocking number punches, which no other fighter was successful at doing in the past. To sum everything up into one sentence: Marcos Maidana came closer than any other fighter in recent years to dethroning Mayweather Jr.
Or was all that nothing but an illusion?
When during the post-fight press conference Mayweather Jr. suggested that he could have made this fight as one sided as all others, by boxing rather than brawling with Madiana, was he making an authentic statement, or trying to save face? Was his style of fighting a gift to the boxing fans to avoid a boring event, or was Maidana’s style starting to crack the May-vinci code?
It was clearly evident that Mayweahter Jr. was not moving the way he usually does, and was not being as careful and strategic as he always is. Could he have moved away and made Maidana miss most of his punches? Based on his recent fights, absolutely. I think that most would agree that Maidana, despite being a hard volume puncher with a matching stamina, is not one of the quicker fighters. He telegraphed a number of his harder and wider swinging shots, and his footwork was paced and predictable.
When facing Canelo, Mayweather Jr. was dancing circles around Alvarez, switching angles and throwing counter shots all night long. Mind you, Canelo was not interested in this kind of fight, and was also trying to pressure Floyd. Having said that, the Mayweather Jr. that fought Canelo was not the same one that had faced Maidana this past Saturday night. Did Floyd’s age catch up with him since September of 2013, making him slower and less responsive? Maybe, but it’s highly unlikely. Should the boxing fans believe Mayweather Jr. that he executed the fight that he had planned? I think so. What do you think?
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