(Photo credit: Esther Lin) By Robert Jackson: As the long awaited return to the ring of Floyd “Money” Mayweather is upon us it’s once again time to discuss the pros and cons that each fighter brings to the ring. For this edition of ‘just the facts’, training, trainers, conditioning, mental and physical make up are some of the topics that will be discussed so keep reading.
In one corner we have the reigning and defending WBC Welterweight Champion 43-0, Floyd Joy Mayweather Jr, in the other corner we have the Interim WBC 147lb Champion 31-1-1, Robert ‘The Ghost’ Guerrero.
Every fighter wants to be their own man in and out of the ring. They develop a fighting style honed by an amateur career that is the foundation or pedigree if you will for professional fighting. 140lb contender Amir Khan a silver medal Olympic boxer, first trained in the US by Freddie Roach and now trained by Virgil Hunter is struggling to synchronize his amateur pedigree with his professional fight style and is suffering mightily for it.
Not actually…Guillermo Rigodeaux 2-time Olympic gold medalist and now unified WBA/WBO Super Bantamweight champion has a lot more fish to fry to be considered great in the professional ranks. Having out-skilled and outclassed P4P fighter Nonito Donaire is just the beginning.
Prior to this fight Rigondeaux was considered by many just another decorated Cuban amateur fighter. Hosting an 11-0, 8-KO record, Rigondeaux had done nothing significant that would indicate he was any threat to the #3 or #4 P4P rated Donaire whose scalps on his boxing resume included names like Montiel, Arce and Darchinyan.
Note: The “Road to Donaire-Rigondeaux” special replays today (Apr. 4) on HBO2 at 6:15 p.m. ET/PT.
With close to 400 fights in the mighty Cuban amateur boxing program Guillermo Rigondeaux is one of the most decorated amateur boxers in that program and the history of amateur boxing. The 12 losses that he accrued during his amateur run that saw him win 2 Olympic gold medals (2000, 2004) is short of amazing for such a long amateur career. After defecting from Cuba, the Cuban standout entered the professional ranks.
As a professional Rigondeaux’s 11-0 record and fight resume is nothing to brag about, because his amateur pedigree thus far has prevented him from getting the competitive fights…until now. In 10 days Rigondeaux will face his toughest test as a professional when he takes on P4P fighter Nonito Donaire for Donaire’s 122lb title. Many scribes, boxing analysts and insiders are predicting a Donaire win based on professional experience and size alone, discounting Rigondeaux deep participation in the amateurs. Some are even questioning Rigondeaux’s skills and heart. Donaire himself has said he sees a ‘flaw’ in Rigondeaux’s fight style that he will exploit on fight night.
Whether it’s Floyd Mayweather Jr. – the guy that everyone loves to hate, just signing a big money deal with the Showtime Network for whom he bolted from HBO for, or other reasons, HBO has now struck back, severing it’s boxing relationship with Golden Boy promotions (GBP) whom Mayweather has collaborated with for his last few fights.
HBO’s claims of Mayweather’s defection having no affect on their boxing program couldn’t be farther from the truth. Truth is they wanted Mayweather and his move was an unexpected shock to HBO who stands to lose millions of dollars and its #1 status from Mayweather PPV’s. So HBO had to do something, cutting their losses they went after the group who reportedly brokered the Mayweather/Showtime deal; Golden Boy Promotions.