Lot of people out there thinking he’s got to land that lucky punch, that hail mary bomb delivered with bad intentions and a prayer.
Lot of people thinking Marcos Maidana (35-3 with 31 KOs; age 3; on a four-fight winning streak) will be throwing nothing but bombs from second one against Floyd Mayweather on May 3 at the MGM, and on Showtime pay-per-view…but his trainer, Robert Garcia, tells me that isn’t so.
Yes, Garcia said during a Tuesday night phoner, Maidana has been training thus far with the intention of throwing about 120 punches a round. But, the Cali based tutor said he isn’t encouraging the Argentine to simply go for broke, and be in a feast or famine mode. No, Garcia said, the game plan isn’t so simplistic.
“Physically, he’s ready. Floyd is a top notch guy, but it’s not impossible to beat him. Chino has trained like never before, and he has the perfect style to “climb that mountain.” Plus, he’s got tremendous heart.”
I asked Garcia, in his estimation, how much better Mayweather is than the man so many love to hate, Adrien Broner, whom Maidana upset, giving so many Broner-haters an early X-mas present last Dec. 14, in San Antonio.
He didn’t bite…But he did say that Maidana will be x percent better on this Golden Boy Promotions card than he was against Broner, if for no other reason than he will have a full camp. For the Broner upset thriller, Garcia and conditioning coach Alex Ariza were working with Brandon Rios, and in Macau with Rios for a spell, meaning Maidana had to work with subs as the Pacquiao-Rios Nov. 24 tangle took precedence. Not so this time. “Chino will be in better shape, better conditioned, to surprise the world,” Garcia said.
Maidana has improved in the last couple years, the trainer said, and said that his skills have been upped a notch, but just as important, or maybe more so, his mental game has been upgraded. “I’ve seen a big difference,” the trainer said. “He came to the gym looking to learn. He’s still learning. What has he picked up? He’s mentally positive for this type of fight. The odds are against him and it helps to be very positive.”
And what if Garcia sees Chino getting frustrated, start to back off, get eaten up by the Floyd counters? What can he do to shift the gears? “If he gets frustrate like Canelo? You have to prepare him to get hit…they give up, some of them, when they see they can’t do it. They don’t follow up. Mentally, they give up. Chino is not going to do that. He will fight to the last minute. He will be ready for those counters, he will be ready to miss a lot and land just one. But we’re not training to just land one punch, not training to just to get lucky, not at all.” Garcia said that, yes, it’s a tall order, but he wants Maidana to seek to win rounds.
Readers, talk to me. If you’re Maidana’s trainer, what gameplan do you go to war with? I like Garcia’s POV on this task. You weigh in; give us the blueprint for Maidana to score the upset of the last few decades.