Mayweather vs. Baldomir Post-Fight Analysis

BY Michael Olajide ON November 05, 2006
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Going into this fight Baldomir is the epitome of confidence and anyone with a modicum of Boxing Intelligence would have to wonder why? This is by far and away the best fighter he has fought and potentially will ever fight… does he feel his ability to absorb what Floyd has and answering back with his own will be enough? It may take water a while but it always wears down the rock. I think back to parallels in boxing matches and the one that is most prominent is the Ali vs. Bonavena fight. Oscar was strong, gave Ali no respect and took the fight to him much the same way. Nor was Oscar undefeated at that point, as he had lost to Frazier, Floyd Patterson, Jimmy Ellis and many names you wouldn’t recognize, yet something was ignited in him that would help him ALMOST win. He had Ali in real trouble …but ALMOST only counts with horseshoes and hand grenades. The fact that Baldomir really believes he can win is what makes this fight worth watching and now I am interested in this fight… Scheduled for 12 it stands to figure “Little Ringo” will get his chance to do something and then we may really get the chance to see what Floyd is made of. Scarface said, “Every dog has its day”… they say Baldomir has had two already… after day, comes night, I can’t see it happening, but that’s why I am tuning in.

I like Floyd’s a la Caesar ring entrance. I can’t believe that Emanuel Steward says that he feels this fight against Baldomir is the first “real fight” Mayweather has had. To say that is to disqualify every professional fight Mayweather has had… the exceptional champions he has defeated.

Round 1
Baldomir looks wooden and tight. Arm-punching. Floyd’s round… he was the aggressor… I think this psychologically surprised Baldomir who expected Mayweather to be on his bike from the get-go.
Mayweather

Round 2
Mayweather looked better making Baldomir miss and picking his shots with sharp counters. Although PBF’s corner may be wrong telling him to go to the body this early.
Mayweather’s round-but closer than the first round.

Round 3
Got Baldomir hesitating now through feints because Baldomir has missed so much he is losing confidence. Baldo doesn’t like the fact that Mayweather uses the elbow when he comes in but Baldomir is trying to hug him up, so it’s fair. Let’s say Floyd is preempting a foul. Mayweather round.

Round 4
Mayweather making the mistake (maybe not in this fight) of trying to time the right uppercut and just getting grazed with the right hand of Baldomir… that’s how Uncle Roger made brain cell deposits to the Canvas Bank of America when fighting Juan Laporte. He cannot afford to get too confident. Mayweather round.

Round 5
Baldomir has to realize that he has to take shots in order land his own… He is trying to box with this man and getting potshot. Mayweather easy.

Baldomir’s rude awakening:
Every fighter gets one at some point in their career… like when everyone told Ray Leonard, Duran is easy to hit, just a slugger (2nd round…RIIING)… like when everyone told Hearns that Leonard can’t punch or take his punch (6th round… RIING), like when everyone told Forman Ali can’t fight no more (8th round RIIING), Baldy’s people told Baldomir how he was going to be too strong for Mayweather, (RIIING). They were on the inside at times and Baldomir felt the strength of Mayweather and realized this kid isn’t some flimsy fighter who was gonna cave in at the first stiff wind… Learning this mid-fight is one of the worst on the job training methods there is!


Round 6
Mayweather keeps raising his chin too high and Baldomir is just skinning it. He may be lucky to not get jarred by the shot in later rounds but in the interim he is playing select a punch with Baldomir’s face. A memo to future opponents of PBF. Mayweather’s round.

Round 7
Nice defensive moves by Mayweather, center ring they exchange right hands, dangerous… if Baldomir was a puncher maybe there is a bigger effect. Ringside an in-his-prime Roy Jones comparison is made. The thought darts through my mind that the diff between them is Roy had a much more effective and complex offense, whereas Mayweather, although he has a very effective “sculptor’s” offense (he chips away at his subject) has a much tighter defense.

Round 8
Nothing I haven’t said before.

Round 9
The Mayweather jab really coming into play. The thought comes to mind once again that
Merchant talks about the wonderful exhibition but the fight isn’t good because there is no drama, true… everyone wants to see Rocky, but the appreciation of the skills should be considered here.

Round 10
More of the same… Mayweather picking his punches and jumping out of the way. Baldomir’s fanning the joint. You can’t tell me all that money and Mandalay Bay has no air-conditioning.

Round 11
The monotony of a lopsided beating is a sleeping pill. I know it sounds bad, but at the same time as being a fighter you are also an entertainer and people come to be entertained… if you can turn it on a little more… even if they are fake flurries circa Ali vs. Jimmy Young, then why not? Give the fans a little something that justifies the ticket.

Round 12
Mayweather giving the round away raising the right hand, telling Baldo to “come on” and simultaneously putting the engine into reverse. He is way ahead, crowd boos. Always wondered what a guy was thinking when he does that. Baldomir’s round.

MAYWEATHER BY UNDENIABLE, UNQUESTIONABLE, UNDISPUTED DECISION
If it were as Emmanuel Steward said, and this was the first time Mayweather has fought a real champ (I was as stunned as Floyd when Emmanuel said that) … or, this is his first dangerous fight, then you gotta give a flying colors thumbs up to Floyd for an amazing performance… BUT, if you see Floyd as a future hall of famer, someone who deserves to be placed into the elite category of the Sugar Rays, Durans, Ali (singular) and such… an athlete/entertainer, someone who understands the moment and in tune with the 9000 fans that came out to see him perform and hundreds of thousands of fans who tuned in worldwide via closed-circuit, then maybe he fell short THIS performance. Yeah, he bit Larry Merchant’s head off in the post-fight interview and I can’t say I blame him, but at the same time, Larry was asking a completely legitimate question that may have been misinterpreted by Floyd given the history of Larry and his way of asking fighters questions that would cause one to cringe… fighters are getting hip. Floyd wanted praise for the win, no matter how he got it. He fought a strong man with a broken hand (?) who walks around as a light-heavyweight… Floyd went through a very physical and mental journey preparing for this fight and probably wanted more than anything to be bathed in praise that wasn’t forthcoming. I am sure he will look at this fight and in retrospect learn a lesson, and being the talent he is, I am sure amend his style to accommodate the fight fans needs while satisfying his own.

This fight showed once again that boxing isn’t about how much you can lift but how often you can PUNCH! Strength has no place in the ring against a man who knows how to box.

To judge this fight on a purely entertainment level, I would give it 6 out of a possible 10. It left much to be desired, but you can’t blame Floyd for everything. If Baldomir prepared even remotely close to how he should’ve, he would’ve been a little more effective and the fans would’ve been treated to a closer affair. “He was too fast” is not a legitimate excuse for that type of performance at the level they are. Watching it from a fighter’s POV I give the fight an 8… I think Floyd may be dabbling in the weights and that is why he is throwing one punch at a time and not very many combinations these days, but I could appreciate the skills. The fight could’ve been a 9 or 10 if Baldomir held up his end of the bargain.

UNDERCARD ANALYSIS
Arreola vs. Wills

Seen Wills before he turned pro and he was a kid with limited experience but a lot of heart and potential… something got in the way of fulfilling that potential and it could be Hollywood, it could be personal issues, it could be the fact that he doesn’t have to struggle for his next meal… but I don’t think that fight was indicative of his true ability.
Arreola wins, looked impressive and was active if not very creative.

Williams vs. Pakao
Brought in as the sacrificial lamb, Pakeo was getting stuck like a pig. One thing nice about this Williams kid though that is a beautiful thing to see and that is his ability to move his hands effortlessly… but what’s unusual, almost creepy, is his ability to throw punches almost emotionlessly. Definitely a future force in the middle divisions… when he does get hit it will be during an exchange. They talk about Williams not being a devastating puncher and he doesn’t seem to be, but I have seen enough fights in my life to know that if you were to see his opponent’s face that evening or the next day, you would think a herd of cattle had run over it. Many if not most of the punches Williams throws are “placement” punches. There were definitely punches that snapped back the head, but most were of the cruise-control nature. Ref stopped it at the right time. Pakao has to take some responsibility for the lopsided beating, even though he showed amazing heart.
Williams by mercy stoppage. Would like to see him vs. Mayweather… That’s a fight!

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