LOTIERZO: If You Buy Mayweather's Next Fight You're A Fool

floyd-mayweather

He made more money in one fight than Muhammad Ali and Sugar Ray Leonard, who were both clearly superior fighters to him, made during their entire careers. Nobody begrudges a fighter making all the money he possibly can, even Floyd Mayweather, but enough is too much.

He's been a pro for 19 years and yet has there hasn’t been one fight that he participated in that was truly memorable or one that you'll take to the grave with you. Maybe there was for some but certainly not me. Is he the greatest or most complete boxer you've ever seen? Absolutely not. Unless perhaps you're a new boxing fan under 35 years old. He's certainly not the fastest of hand or foot that we've ever seen and his punching power is just adequate. His signature trait is his defensive prowess, and even at that he's pretty basic and vanilla in that he covers when the opponent punches and doesn't mix until they reload. Past defensive wizards like Willie Pep, Wilfred Benitez and Pernell Whitaker engaged with their opponents and made them miss repeatedly. And don't point to one sequence where Mayweather did it and then act as if you shoot my argument down. If I searched long enough I could find a clip where Paulie Malinaggi looks as if he's Ray Leonard's equal as a finisher.

And then there's the well-chronicled argument that he cherry picks his opponents, or at least most of them. This is something that cannot be denied by an open minded fan who has no stake in solidifying his place among the greatest of the greats in order to justify their fandom.

Since he barely defeated a washed up Oscar De La Hoya eight years ago via split decision, he’s never passed up the opportunity to say he always gives the fans what they want. This is the biggest crock that has ever been perpetrated by any fighter in boxing history. Actually the opposite is true. If there was a great fighter who cared less about boxing fans than Floyd Mayweather does, I need someone to point him out to me. In 19 years fighting as a pro there's been one fighter that boxing fans pleaded with him to fight. His name is Manny Pacquiao. Remember him, the little flyweight/featherweight dynamo who chased Mayweather for almost six years before they finally fought.

Sports/boxing fans have short memories. The morning after Pacquiao took apart Miguel Cotto, Mayweather vs. Pacquiao was a legitimate super-fight. Manny was a non-stop perpetual motion attacking machine and Mayweather rarely threw more than two punches at a time. However, regardless of how much the fans clamored to see them fight, Mayweather threw up a faux roadblock every time. Then fought a no hope opponent and dangled the possibility of maybe fighting Pacquiao next, but it never happened. During the interim fans foolishly bought everyone of Floyd's fights on PPV for a lot of money. And with the exception of his bout against Miguel Cotto, three years after Pacquiao beat him, and the first fight against Marcos Maidana, not one of them were terribly exciting or drama filled.

Finally after the public became fed up with Mayweather not fighting Pacquiao, they let him know that they were done buying his fights. This was an idea that gained momentum when Mayweather's friend and apologist Stephen A. Smith said on ESPN, while looking directly into the camera, that the only fight people wanted Floyd to make was against Pacquiao…..not Marcos Maidana or Amir Khan. The timing couldn't have worked out better for Mayweather. By the spring of 2015 Pacquiao was 3-2 in his last five bouts, his offense was reduced to a jump in head first one-two and he was very hittable to put it mildly. Not to mention in his last loss he suffered one of the most brutal one-punch knockouts in boxing history, something Smith constantly alluded to on ESPN.

With the threat of fans ignoring Mayweather and the reality of Pacquiao's decline, Mayweather agreed to fight the only boxer fans ever wanted to see him touch gloves with, Manny Pacquiao. Only six years too late. And as it was said in this space for six consecutive years, when Floyd finally agrees to fight Manny, the result will be a forgone conclusion, resulting in a Mayweather boring decision win. This is exactly how it turned out.

However, two things transpired that no one completely saw: 1) boxing fans would be ripped off like they never were before to see it and 2) Mayweather would be confronted by an injured Pacquiao who basically fought with one arm. I'm not saying that's why Mayweather won. I've always maintained that Mayweather would beat Pacquiao because he owned the size and style advantage, nothing will change that.

Earlier this month it was reported that Mayweather was going to fight former title holder Andre Berto 30-3 (22) on CBS and not PPV. Which seemed like a good way for Mayweather to win some fans back after gouging their eyes out to see him fight the compromised Pacquiao.

Only now that doesn't appear to be the case.

According to a report on TSS by Michael Woods, Mayweather “won't be offering up a freebie for fans” on September 12 as he will fight on pay-per-view.

“The source tells us (that) money matters, and how to get Floyd the amount he desires won't be so clear if it was done on 'free' TV,” Woods reported. “A mass of eyeballs would have been a bonus, the thinking seems to be, but the PPV model will lead to the payoff Floyd seeks as he tries to get to 49-0.”

If what Michael Woods says above comes to fruition, every fan who buys another Mayweather fight is a complete and utter fool. For what? Why would anyone pay to see Mayweather box again after the joke the Mayweather-Pacquiao promotion and fight turned out to be? Floyd had to be laughing at boxing fans on the inside after the fight. He even said to Pacquiao when the bell rang to end the 12th round “we made a lot of money.”

When are fans going to grasp that Mayweather will only continue to gouge them out of their money if they allow him to? What happens if nobody cares about Mayweather's next fight? If fans have no interest and voice they're not buying it, do you really think SHOWTIME is going to forge ahead and make a fight nobody is planning on coming to or buying via PPV. No way!

Then what? Well, either Floyd fights a real fight for a reasonable price, or he retires because nobody gives a damn anymore about him and the WWE event that his care has evolved into. Heck, as Woods detailed above, it's all about money with Mayweather. Floyd taking the fans’ money and then mocking them when he thinks nobody is listening. Believe me that will change once fans, if they ever do, decide they want it to. And if they buy his next bout and it's a snooze fest, which I guarantee it will be, they have themselves to blame and no one else.

If I were Mayweather I'd keep playing the fans as long as I could just because I can. Who wouldn’t? But I'll tell you what…….let word get out that fans are done being ripped off by Mayweather and they refuse to buy his next couple fights and things will change in less than a New York minute.

Wake up boxing fans! You’re not going to see a great event or something you haven’t seen already. We've seen the show for eight plus years, it never changes, and now there's undeniable proof that it's not worth paying for again. What an amazing twist of fate. Mayweather goes 48-0 but can't give away fight 49 because nobody cares or wants to get fleeced again.

Of course that won't happen because people are like sheep and sheep usually are slaughtered and money changes hands.

Frank Lotierzo can be contacted at GlovedFist@Gmail.com

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Comment on this article

COMMENTS

-stormcentre :

Now there's a headline that has prioritized, and is sure to, get the masses talking, and writing; including me. Mayweather's next fight will not only sell really good numbers - but it will also perform the function of - in the very least - displaying skills that are almost completely unmatched by any modern day boxer and thus can be learnt from by any fighter wanting to learn the art of slip/slide and defensive fighting. Not only that, Mayweather's next fight - assuming it is as predictable, bad, and boring - as all the doomsayers claim; will serve as yet another example of how the public are prepared to accept what it complains of about Floyd from other fighters, but not Floyd himself. Not even when what they're not accepting is not what they think it is. But then again how could I say anything other than this, as my love for Floyd is an uncontrollably, blind and subjective passion. OK (after Kovalev V Mohammedi [silently being all the mismatch a "yet to happen" Mayweather fight is claimed to be]) I am ready to be ripped off; so where do I pay for the next Mayweather PPV? Lets cut those tall (Mayweather) poppies down forever !!!!!! Love it !!! :) :)


-deepwater2 :

Rejoice. The Mayweather era is almost over.


-Kid Blast :

tHE TITLE IS THE ARTICLE


-stormcentre :

Notwithstanding the fact that it now seems quite clear (even without completing the Whitaker V Mayweather analysis) that Pernell Whitaker - whom was previously claimed to be a better operator than Floyd - clearly is not; I would appreciate anyone putting up video of some of Leonard and Ali's fight sequences that show how they are clearly technically superior fighters to Floyd Mayweather. I have - amongst the incoming fire of many negative claims about Floyd - asked this before of Ali, and so far - for several years now and despite the claims such as those above/below I refer to - no-one has yet come forward; let alone with the same intensity and glow of that used to disparage Floyd. Until this happens for both Leonard and Ali - whom both I have enormous respect for and believe they were better, in some aspects of boxing, than Floyd - we must surely place the author's comment ""who were both clearly superior fighters to Floyd"" on the sideline - or, at least, remove the word ""clearly"" from it and/or possibly also explain the above lack of anyone (and let's face it there is hardly anyone here that has not used YouTube to back up their claims at one point) coming forward with a video link that shows how Leonard and Ali are clearly technically superior fighters to Floyd Mayweather. If we are remaining objective; this stands regardless of how much - justified or not - some like to dislike Floyd.
->http://www.thesweetscience.com/forums/showthread.php?21310-Pernell-Vs-Floyd-a-definitve-comparison-of-skills :) :)


-SouthPawFlo :

Sooooooo after reading the article, there were obviously some valid points, but some things that are left out need to be addressed: Mayweather Fight weekends in Vegas are some of the best times as a boxing fan, he moves the needle and gets the fans coming out in flocks and always brings electricity to the city.. Nobody in boxing has been this good, this long... He's been world champion almost 2 Decades when most champs have a 5 year shelf life at best... People talk a lot about him as a defensive genius, but he's the most accurate counter puncher in the sport and his punch stat numbers are also the best in the sport.... Once Floyd made it to the "A" side and started "picking" his opponents he was 37-0 with 25 KO's, and I hope people didn't think he picked his opponents in the Amateurs and the Olympics.... Whether the masses choose to buy or not to buy his next fight, Floyd has given boxing his whole life and once he's finally done fans should hope the "next" Floyd Mayweather can carry the sport in the future.....


-Radam G :

Sooooooo after reading the article, there were obviously some valid points, but some things that are left out need to be addressed: Mayweather Fight weekends in Vegas are some of the best times as a boxing fan, he moves the needle and gets the fans coming out in flocks and always brings electricity to the city.. Nobody in boxing has been this good, this long... He's been world champion almost 2 Decades when most champs have a 5 year shelf life at best... People talk a lot about him as a defensive genius, but he's the most accurate counter puncher in the sport and his punch stat numbers are also the best in the sport.... Once Floyd made it to the "A" side and started "picking" his opponents he was 37-0 with 25 KO's, and I hope people didn't think he picked his opponents in the Amateurs and the Olympics.... Whether the masses choose to buy or not to buy his next fight, Floyd has given boxing his whole life and once he's finally done fans should hope the "next" Floyd Mayweather can carry the sport in the future.....
Lil Floyd sneaked in to control greatness. Da game will not allow another Money May anytime soon. Especially since the sneaky power of "advisor" tsAH is going to fade to black. So when and how to cherry pick, a future ("next") Floyd Mayweather will lack. Not for the next score and a decade will one pug be given the power that Lil Floyd has had. Timing is everything. He came at the right time with his shenanigans and promotion-and-cherry-picking genius and optical illusions. Holla!


-Radam G :

And he knew what pug to duck, and what pug to pluck. And with the NSAC and Sin City corruption on his side, what pug to f***. Holla!


-New York Tony :

Excellent article. Well said. And needed to be said.


-Radam G :

Now a perfect diet beef is breaking out between Money May's lady "Chef Q" and Berto's lady Chef J.
->http://forum.philboxing.com/viewtopic.php?f=5&t=269838. Money May is a genius at plots for promoting. There is nothing like a proper diet war. Naive at-the-bottom-of-life knuckleheads in their vast ignorance make all types of mockeries of one's diet and types of grub. Holla!


-Matthew :

An interesting point was brought up about whether Ali and Leonard were technically superior fighters than Mayweather. Let's look at this in closer detail. While Ali is almost unanimously considered one of the top five fighters of all-time, from a technical standpoint, he did many things that fighters are taught not to do. He kept his hands too low, he pulled straight back away from punches, went to the ropes too often, and almost never punched to the body. Fundamentally speaking, Mayweather does nearly everything correctly, especially head/upper body movement, keeping his hands properly positioned (although he does sometimes keep his left hand a little low to try to sucker his opponent in), and balance. Mayweather is a fundamentally more correct fighter than Ali, however, nobody in their right mind would ever say that Mayweather is the greater fighter. Ali is the greatest heavyweight of all time because of the risks he took, the era he fought in, the opponents he defeated, and the adversity that he overcame. Now, on to Leonard. In the interest of full disclosure, Ray Leonard was my favorite fighter growing up. That being said, I can look at his career objectively. For my money, Leonard was just as fundamentally sound (if not more) than Mayweather. If he wanted to, he could have been as adept defensively as Mayweather ,but that wasn't his nature. His balance was nearly perfect (Angelo Dundee said that was the biggest advantage he had over Thomas Hearns), he was almost never out of position, and he was much more offensively-oriented than Mayweather. The biggest fundamental mistake he made was fighting Duran's fight in Montreal. Sure, he was a little easier to hit than Mayweather, but that's because he looked to take his opponent out and wasn't content to play it safe and win by decision. Leonard (like Benitez and Whitaker) could stay in the pocket, make you miss, and make you pay. Mayweather is content to make you miss and hit you with one shot, while Leonard would let his hands go. Leonard's offensive game was much more diverse than Mayweather's. Leonard was a superior overall fighter than Mayweather, and he rates in the top 20 of many all-time lists for the same reasons that Ali rates as high as he does. On top of that, he was in exciting and memorable fights that successive generations of fight fans will continue to view. I don't think the same will be said about Mayweather.


-Froggy :

Excellent article. Well said. And needed to be said.
DITTO ! I wasted my money on his last fight, it won't happen again !


-Radam G :

An interesting point was brought up about whether Ali and Leonard were technically superior fighters than Mayweather. Let's look at this in closer detail. While Ali is almost unanimously considered one of the top five fighters of all-time, from a technical standpoint, he did many things that fighters are taught not to do. He kept his hands too low, he pulled straight back away from punches, went to the ropes too often, and almost never punched to the body. Fundamentally speaking, Mayweather does nearly everything correctly, especially head/upper body movement, keeping his hands properly positioned (although he does sometimes keep his left hand a little low to try to sucker his opponent in), and balance. Mayweather is a fundamentally more correct fighter than Ali, however, nobody in their right mind would ever say that Mayweather is the greater fighter. Ali is the greatest heavyweight of all time because of the risks he took, the era he fought in, the opponents he defeated, and the adversity that he overcame. Now, on to Leonard. In the interest of full disclosure, Ray Leonard was my favorite fighter growing up. That being said, I can look at his career objectively. For my money, Leonard was just as fundamentally sound (if not more) than Mayweather. If he wanted to, he could have been as adept defensively as Mayweather ,but that wasn't his nature. His balance was nearly perfect (Angelo Dundee said that was the biggest advantage he had over Thomas Hearns), he was almost never out of position, and he was much more offensively-oriented than Mayweather. The biggest fundamental mistake he made was fighting Duran's fight in Montreal. Sure, he was a little easier to hit than Mayweather, but that's because he looked to take his opponent out and wasn't content to play it safe and win by decision. Leonard (like Benitez and Whitaker) could stay in the pocket, make you miss, and make you pay. Mayweather is content to make you miss and hit you with one shot, while Leonard would let his hands go. Leonard's offensive game was much more diverse than Mayweather's. Leonard was a superior overall fighter than Mayweather, and he rates in the top 20 of many all-time lists for the same reasons that Ali rates as high as he does. On top of that, he was in exciting and memorable fights that successive generations of fight fans will continue to view. I don't think the same will be said about Mayweather.
Money May's greatness was at junior lightweight/lightweight. He ducked all the powerful-punching string beans at welter and light middle. For instance, he fought washed-up, drugged-up Big Money Oscar, but he stayed clear of mild strong Kermit Cintron and super strong Paul Williams and Tony Margarito. And his Uncle Roger said that it was "no way in hell" was he ever going to fight the late, great Vernon "Viper" Forrest. Real TALK! You can holla at it on the hated YouTube, where posers get crazy up in da cranium when Radam G adroitly find da real real of da actuality of da reality. Holla!


-Radam G :

And in the words of his pops: "He ain't gon' fight no f***in' giant." So 3g, in dat squared jungle, Lil Floyd will never see. Holla!


-stormcentre :

An interesting point was brought up about whether Ali and Leonard were technically superior fighters than Mayweather. Let's look at this in closer detail. While Ali is almost unanimously considered one of the top five fighters of all-time, from a technical standpoint, he did many things that fighters are taught not to do. He kept his hands too low, he pulled straight back away from punches, went to the ropes too often, and almost never punched to the body. Fundamentally speaking, Mayweather does nearly everything correctly, especially head/upper body movement, keeping his hands properly positioned (although he does sometimes keep his left hand a little low to try to sucker his opponent in), and balance. Mayweather is a fundamentally more correct fighter than Ali, however, nobody in their right mind would ever say that Mayweather is the greater fighter. Ali is the greatest heavyweight of all time because of the risks he took, the era he fought in, the opponents he defeated, and the adversity that he overcame. Now, on to Leonard. In the interest of full disclosure, Ray Leonard was my favorite fighter growing up. That being said, I can look at his career objectively. For my money, Leonard was just as fundamentally sound (if not more) than Mayweather. If he wanted to, he could have been as adept defensively as Mayweather ,but that wasn't his nature. His balance was nearly perfect (Angelo Dundee said that was the biggest advantage he had over Thomas Hearns), he was almost never out of position, and he was much more offensively-oriented than Mayweather. The biggest fundamental mistake he made was fighting Duran's fight in Montreal. Sure, he was a little easier to hit than Mayweather, but that's because he looked to take his opponent out and wasn't content to play it safe and win by decision. Leonard (like Benitez and Whitaker) could stay in the pocket, make you miss, and make you pay. Mayweather is content to make you miss and hit you with one shot, while Leonard would let his hands go. Leonard's offensive game was much more diverse than Mayweather's. Leonard was a superior overall fighter than Mayweather, and he rates in the top 20 of many all-time lists for the same reasons that Ali rates as high as he does. On top of that, he was in exciting and memorable fights that successive generations of fight fans will continue to view. I don't think the same will be said about Mayweather.
Good post Matt and I will tell you why. You had the gumption to explain the thinking behind your claims and construct structure with it that made sense. That's the same as being able to calmly talk to a bully, and politely offering him an alternative, before beating him up if the reasoning didn't work. That said, I do disagree with you on a few points. Before I get to them I will issue these disclaimers and say this. 1) I haven't met a bigger SRL fan than myself; loved the guy and still do. 2) I appreciate Mayweather's skills almost as much as I love SRL as a fighter and person. As I have never seen any fighter - none - lay down the skills and moves, flawlessly for almost all 12 rounds, at his age (and also when he was Pretty Boy) - like he does. 3) Look where Ali's style of fighting got him; this is relevant as Floyd often claims it's one reason why he is a defensive fighter. 4) Look at how long SRL's style carried him in the ring as a great fighter - it's a little shorter than Floyd's travels, and Floyd is still exhibiting some pretty sound skills for a guy approaching 40. 5) Look at the competition and guys Ali fought as he closed his career out, yet people are complaining because Floyd mat fight Berto in his (assumed) last fight OK, let's get into it . . . . I doubt that Ali was the greatest heavyweight ever. Whether or not Ali was the greatest heavyweight ever is still debated. Ali undoubtedly was and is both "one of "the greatest, and also the most popular heavyweights ever. Leonard's offensive game - whilst exceptional - was not as diverse as Mayweather's. Leonard did not have several ways to attack that reliably and regularly almost always ensured he could not get hit in return. Leonard was unable to display the same technical array of spectacularly offensive moves in his top fights; by this I don't just mean punching fast and in volume. Yes, I agree Leonard had some beautiful combinations and sublime timing and speed, but not as good as Floyd. Leonard was prepared to take greater risks and trade than Floyd sometimes (but not always) is and has as Money May; but not Pretty Boy. This allows Leonard to be perceived as having a more diverse offensive game, when it was not the case. Leonard was just in the offensive mode when he fought, more than Floyd, and we love him for that. Leonard's fights with Hagler, Duran, and Hearns are still my favorites - above any Floyd has given us. But those fights don't exhibit more offensive and/or all round better technical superiority than Floyd has in his catalog of fights he has given us. Perhaps one could say this is due to competition, and perhaps it is. That said even when we look at when both guys fought obviously sub par competition in their early years, Floyd's dynamic moves and athleticism is are clearly better - even though Leonard's are sensational too. I have confidence saying this because all the moves I refer to that separate Floyd from other fighters, including Leonard, are usually the hardest for other fighters - whether I teach/coach them or not - to learn. Leonard's overall hit/miss ratio - against top or other competition - was never as consistently high and/or where Floyd's was and is too, and that is another pretty good measure of how good a fighter technically is. At the end of the day Leonard can be, and in some cases was, a more exciting fighter than Floyd. Floyd has cherry picked opponents and played the game - particularly as Money Mayweather - I agree with that. So did Leonard a bit and that fact has been brought up here in this forum many, many times; even by those that dislike Floyd. Despite Floyd cherry picking some opponents, he has also fought some that represent really decent challenges too, especially given his age, how many fights he has had, and the type of guys that Leonard and Ali were fighting when they had the same (or less) fights than Floyd. And Floyd has done all this without the dark clouds of extreme PED and catch-weight use hanging over most of his greatest fights. But with it all said, there is no way Leonard is a technically superior fighter to Floyd, as - even aside from how Floyd's superior technical ability has given him an obvious longevity in the sport that has clearly outlasted (in many definitions and ways) both Ali and Leonard - Floyd quite simply is able to successfully execute more skills and moves in the ring in championship fights. I'm not even going near the fact that Floyd is undefeated. The fact that you have (correctly) stated Floyd was a more fundamentally (technically?) correct fighter than Ali effectively supports the above views; unless one believes Leonard was better than Ali. However, even if you do believe Leonard was better than Ali, one only has to look at those times when Leonard was closing his career out and/or Floyd's age (or thereabouts) and under attack to see the difference. During those times - when Leonard was clearly unable to fight back as he may have otherwise and/or used to - he was unable to muster a reasonable defence and/or comparably accurate/effective offensive strategy; as his technical skills and style would not allow it. No shame there as SRL is a legend. However, it still describes an undeniable difference between his technical abilities and Floyds. That said, if you got a prime Leonard and put him in with a prime Mayweather Jr. I would have probably backed Leonard. Especially back then when the fight would have been relevant and when I was a mad SRL fan and didn't know of Floyd's skills - Actually, yes, come to think of it, I think the Leonard that fought Hearns and Duran - particularly before the eye injury, layoff, and subsequent Hagler fight - would probably give Floyd real troubles. And that's because - in my opinion - Leonard may not only know how to deal with Floyd's moves and defence - but he also may be too aggressive for Floyd to effectively use it. You see, to beat Floyd you must be able to (primarily) deal with his defence, offence, speed, and timing. It's not easy, as - contrary to popular belief - when Floyd is being defensive he is often being offensive too. Just most people don't know how that all works, so instead they - perhaps understandably - summarize and simplify what they think they know of his style. The end result - if you got a prime Leonard and placed him in with a prime Mayweather Jr. - could be that because Leonard knew how to deal with Floyd's defence . . . . Sugar's speed and aggression was too much for Floyd; as Floyd uses his defence (amongst other things) to slow the fight down to his pace, pick guys off, and hit guys not only when they're open - but also when they're extended and where it most counts. Leonard is and would not necessarily be faster than Floyd, but the fact he was/is still a fast combination puncher could really add to the troubles. The only issue there (for SRL) would be that he was quite open when in attack, and Floyd - if his defence was perfected enough at the time when they fought - would be able to counter him. Regardless of the outcome Leonard wouldn't be a technically better and/or more fundamentally sound fighter than Floyd. He would certainly be the more exciting and popular fighter though, and I love Sugar Ray Leonard. Good post Matt. Cheers. :) :) :)


-stormcentre :

An interesting point was brought up about whether Ali and Leonard were technically superior fighters than Mayweather. Let's look at this in closer detail. While Ali is almost unanimously considered one of the top five fighters of all-time, from a technical standpoint, he did many things that fighters are taught not to do. He kept his hands too low, he pulled straight back away from punches, went to the ropes too often, and almost never punched to the body. Fundamentally speaking, Mayweather does nearly everything correctly, especially head/upper body movement, keeping his hands properly positioned (although he does sometimes keep his left hand a little low to try to sucker his opponent in), and balance. Mayweather is a fundamentally more correct fighter than Ali, however, nobody in their right mind would ever say that Mayweather is the greater fighter. Ali is the greatest heavyweight of all time because of the risks he took, the era he fought in, the opponents he defeated, and the adversity that he overcame. Now, on to Leonard. In the interest of full disclosure, Ray Leonard was my favorite fighter growing up. That being said, I can look at his career objectively. For my money, Leonard was just as fundamentally sound (if not more) than Mayweather. If he wanted to, he could have been as adept defensively as Mayweather ,but that wasn't his nature. His balance was nearly perfect (Angelo Dundee said that was the biggest advantage he had over Thomas Hearns), he was almost never out of position, and he was much more offensively-oriented than Mayweather. The biggest fundamental mistake he made was fighting Duran's fight in Montreal. Sure, he was a little easier to hit than Mayweather, but that's because he looked to take his opponent out and wasn't content to play it safe and win by decision. Leonard (like Benitez and Whitaker) could stay in the pocket, make you miss, and make you pay. Mayweather is content to make you miss and hit you with one shot, while Leonard would let his hands go. Leonard's offensive game was much more diverse than Mayweather's. Leonard was a superior overall fighter than Mayweather, and he rates in the top 20 of many all-time lists for the same reasons that Ali rates as high as he does. On top of that, he was in exciting and memorable fights that successive generations of fight fans will continue to view. I don't think the same will be said about Mayweather.
Good post Matt and I will tell you why. You had the gumption to explain the thinking behind your claims and construct structure with it that made sense, rather than just releasing an emotional comment/post based on feelings and dislike for Floyd - whom is - love him or hate him - still one of the greatest modern day fighters of this generation; if not the best all round technical and fundamentally sound boxer we have seen for a very, very, long time. That's the same as being able to calmly talk to a bully, and politely offering him an alternative, before beating him up if the reasoning didn't work. That said, I do disagree with you on a few points. Before I get to them I will issue these disclaimers and say this. 1) I haven't met a bigger SRL fan than myself; loved the guy and still do. 2) I appreciate Mayweather's skills almost as much as I love SRL as a fighter and person. As I have never seen any fighter - none - lay down the skills and moves, flawlessly for almost all 12 rounds, at his age (and also when he was Pretty Boy) - like he does. 3) Look where Ali's style of fighting got him; this is relevant as Floyd often claims it's one reason why he is a defensive fighter. 4) Look at how long SRL's style carried him in the ring as a great fighter - it's a little shorter than Floyd's travels, and Floyd is still exhibiting some pretty sound skills for a guy approaching 40. 5) Look at the competition and guys Ali fought as he closed his career out, yet people are complaining because Floyd mat fight Berto in his (assumed) last fight OK, let's get into it . . . . I doubt that Ali was the greatest heavyweight ever. Whether or not Ali was the greatest heavyweight ever is still debated. Ali undoubtedly was and is both "one of "the greatest, and also the most popular heavyweights ever. Leonard's offensive game - whilst exceptional - was not as diverse as Mayweather's. Leonard did not have several ways to attack that reliably and regularly almost always ensured he could not get hit in return. Leonard was unable to display the same technical array of spectacularly offensive moves in his top fights; by this I don't just mean punching fast and in volume. Yes, I agree Leonard had some beautiful combinations and sublime timing and speed, but not as good as Floyd. Leonard was prepared to take greater risks and trade than Floyd sometimes (but not always) is and has as Money May; but not Pretty Boy. This allows Leonard to be perceived as having a more diverse offensive game, when it was not the case. Leonard was just in the offensive mode when he fought, more than Floyd, and we love him for that. Leonard's fights with Hagler, Duran, and Hearns are still my favorites - above any Floyd has given us. But those fights don't exhibit more offensive and/or all round better technical superiority than Floyd has in his catalog of fights he has given us. Perhaps one could say this is due to competition, and perhaps it is. That said even when we look at when both guys fought obviously sub par competition in their early years, Floyd's dynamic moves and athleticism is are clearly better - even though Leonard's are sensational too. I have confidence saying this because all the moves I refer to that separate Floyd from other fighters, including Leonard, are usually the hardest for other fighters - whether I teach/coach them or not - to learn. Leonard's overall hit/miss ratio - against top or other competition - was never as consistently high and/or where Floyd's was and is too, and that is another pretty good measure of how good a fighter technically is. At the end of the day Leonard can be, and in some cases was, a more exciting fighter than Floyd. Floyd has cherry picked opponents and played the game - particularly as Money Mayweather - I agree with that; certainly no more than Roy Jones though.. Leonard cherry picked opponents and played the game a bit too, and that fact has been brought up many times right here in this forum; even by those that dislike Floyd. Despite Floyd cherry picking some opponents, he has also fought some that represent really decent challenges too, especially given his age, how many fights he has had, and the type of guys that Leonard and Ali were fighting when they had the same (or less) fights than Floyd. And Floyd has done all this without the dark clouds of extreme PED and catch-weight use hanging over most of his greatest fights. But with it all said, there is no way Leonard is a technically superior fighter to Floyd, as - even aside from how Floyd's superior technical ability has given him an obvious longevity in the sport that has clearly outlasted (in many definitions and ways) both Ali and Leonard - Floyd quite simply is able to successfully execute more skills and moves in the ring in championship fights. I'm not even going near the fact that Floyd is undefeated. The fact that you have (correctly) stated Floyd was a more fundamentally (technically?) correct fighter than Ali effectively supports the above views; unless one believes Leonard was better than Ali. However, even if you do believe Leonard was better than Ali, one only has to look at those times when Leonard was closing his career out and/or Floyd's age (or thereabouts) and under attack to see the difference. During those times - when Leonard was clearly unable to fight back as he may have otherwise and/or used to - he was unable to muster a reasonable defence and/or comparably accurate/effective offensive strategy; as his technical skills and style would not allow it. No shame there as SRL is a legend. However, it still describes an undeniable difference between his technical abilities and Floyds. That said, if you got a prime Leonard and put him in with a prime Mayweather Jr. I would have probably backed Leonard. Especially back then when the fight would have been relevant and when I was a mad SRL fan and didn't know of Floyd's skills - Actually, yes, come to think of it, I think the Leonard that fought Hearns and Duran - particularly before the eye injury, layoff, and subsequent Hagler fight - would probably give Floyd real troubles. And that's because - in my opinion - Leonard may not only know how to deal with Floyd's moves and defence - but he also may be too aggressive for Floyd to effectively use it. You see, to beat Floyd you must be able to (primarily) deal with his defence, offence, speed, and timing. It's not easy, as - contrary to popular belief - when Floyd is being defensive he is often being offensive too. Just most people don't know how that all works, so instead they - perhaps understandably - summarize and simplify what they think they know of his style. The end result - if you got a prime Leonard and placed him in with a prime Mayweather Jr. - could be that because Leonard knew how to deal with Floyd's defence . . . . Sugar's speed and aggression was too much for Floyd; as Floyd uses his defence (amongst other things) to slow the fight down to his pace, pick guys off, and hit guys not only when they're open - but also when they're extended and where it most counts. Leonard is and would not necessarily be faster than Floyd, but the fact he was/is still a fast combination puncher could really add to the troubles. The only issue there (for SRL) would be that he was quite open when in attack, and Floyd - if his defence was perfected enough at the time when they fought - would be able to counter him. Regardless of the outcome Leonard wouldn't be a technically better and/or more fundamentally sound fighter than Floyd. He would certainly be the more exciting and popular fighter though, and I love Sugar Ray Leonard. Good post Matt. Cheers. :) :) :)


-Domenic :

An interesting point was brought up about whether Ali and Leonard were technically superior fighters than Mayweather. Let's look at this in closer detail. While Ali is almost unanimously considered one of the top five fighters of all-time, from a technical standpoint, he did many things that fighters are taught not to do. He kept his hands too low, he pulled straight back away from punches, went to the ropes too often, and almost never punched to the body. Fundamentally speaking, Mayweather does nearly everything correctly, especially head/upper body movement, keeping his hands properly positioned (although he does sometimes keep his left hand a little low to try to sucker his opponent in), and balance. Mayweather is a fundamentally more correct fighter than Ali, however, nobody in their right mind would ever say that Mayweather is the greater fighter. Ali is the greatest heavyweight of all time because of the risks he took, the era he fought in, the opponents he defeated, and the adversity that he overcame. Now, on to Leonard. In the interest of full disclosure, Ray Leonard was my favorite fighter growing up. That being said, I can look at his career objectively. For my money, Leonard was just as fundamentally sound (if not more) than Mayweather. If he wanted to, he could have been as adept defensively as Mayweather ,but that wasn't his nature. His balance was nearly perfect (Angelo Dundee said that was the biggest advantage he had over Thomas Hearns), he was almost never out of position, and he was much more offensively-oriented than Mayweather. The biggest fundamental mistake he made was fighting Duran's fight in Montreal. Sure, he was a little easier to hit than Mayweather, but that's because he looked to take his opponent out and wasn't content to play it safe and win by decision. Leonard (like Benitez and Whitaker) could stay in the pocket, make you miss, and make you pay. Mayweather is content to make you miss and hit you with one shot, while Leonard would let his hands go. Leonard's offensive game was much more diverse than Mayweather's. Leonard was a superior overall fighter than Mayweather, and he rates in the top 20 of many all-time lists for the same reasons that Ali rates as high as he does. On top of that, he was in exciting and memorable fights that successive generations of fight fans will continue to view. I don't think the same will be said about Mayweather.
Nice. Leonard's stoppage-from-behind against Hearns was an epic highwire act. Leonard was much more offensive-minded than Floyd, as you point out perfectly. Floyd's great. And he can't be faulted for being defensive minded. But I'm with you, I rank Ray Leonard higher.


-stormcentre :

An interesting point was brought up about whether Ali and Leonard were technically superior fighters than Mayweather. Let's look at this in closer detail. While Ali is almost unanimously considered one of the top five fighters of all-time, from a technical standpoint, he did many things that fighters are taught not to do. He kept his hands too low, he pulled straight back away from punches, went to the ropes too often, and almost never punched to the body. Fundamentally speaking, Mayweather does nearly everything correctly, especially head/upper body movement, keeping his hands properly positioned (although he does sometimes keep his left hand a little low to try to sucker his opponent in), and balance. Mayweather is a fundamentally more correct fighter than Ali, however, nobody in their right mind would ever say that Mayweather is the greater fighter. Ali is the greatest heavyweight of all time because of the risks he took, the era he fought in, the opponents he defeated, and the adversity that he overcame. Now, on to Leonard. In the interest of full disclosure, Ray Leonard was my favorite fighter growing up. That being said, I can look at his career objectively. For my money, Leonard was just as fundamentally sound (if not more) than Mayweather. If he wanted to, he could have been as adept defensively as Mayweather ,but that wasn't his nature. His balance was nearly perfect (Angelo Dundee said that was the biggest advantage he had over Thomas Hearns), he was almost never out of position, and he was much more offensively-oriented than Mayweather. The biggest fundamental mistake he made was fighting Duran's fight in Montreal. Sure, he was a little easier to hit than Mayweather, but that's because he looked to take his opponent out and wasn't content to play it safe and win by decision. Leonard (like Benitez and Whitaker) could stay in the pocket, make you miss, and make you pay. Mayweather is content to make you miss and hit you with one shot, while Leonard would let his hands go. Leonard's offensive game was much more diverse than Mayweather's. Leonard was a superior overall fighter than Mayweather, and he rates in the top 20 of many all-time lists for the same reasons that Ali rates as high as he does. On top of that, he was in exciting and memorable fights that successive generations of fight fans will continue to view. I don't think the same will be said about Mayweather.
Good post Matt and I will tell you why. You had the gumption to explain the thinking behind your claims and construct structure with it that made sense, rather than just releasing an emotional comment/post based on feelings and dislike for Floyd - whom is - love him or hate him - still one of the greatest modern day fighters of this generation; if not the best all round technical and fundamentally sound boxer we have seen for a very, very, long time. That's the same as being able to calmly talk to a bully, and politely offering him an alternative, before beating him up if the reasoning didn't work. That said, I do disagree with you on a few points. Before I get to them I will issue these disclaimers and say this. 1) I haven't met a bigger SRL fan than myself; loved the guy and still do. 2) I appreciate Mayweather's skills almost as much as I love SRL as a fighter and person. As I have never seen any fighter - none - lay down the skills and moves, flawlessly for almost all 12 rounds, at his age (and also when he was Pretty Boy) - like he does. 3) Look where Ali's style of fighting got him; this is relevant as Floyd often claims it's one reason why he is a defensive fighter. 4) Look at how long SRL's style carried him in the ring as a great fighter - it's a little shorter than Floyd's travels, and Floyd is still exhibiting some pretty sound skills for a guy approaching 40. 5) Look at the competition and guys Ali fought as he closed his career out, yet people are complaining because Floyd may fight Berto in his (assumed) last fight. OK, let's get into it . . . . I doubt that Ali was the greatest heavyweight ever. Whether or not Ali was the greatest heavyweight ever is still debated. Ali undoubtedly was and is both "one of "the greatest, and also the most popular heavyweights ever. Leonard's offensive game - whilst exceptional - was not as diverse as Mayweather's. Leonard did not have several ways to attack that reliably and regularly almost always ensured he could not get hit in return. Leonard was unable to display the same technical array of spectacularly offensive moves in his top fights; by this I don't just mean punching fast and in volume. Yes, I agree Leonard had some beautiful combinations and sublime timing and speed, but not as good as Floyd. Leonard was prepared to take greater risks and trade than Floyd sometimes (but not always) is and has as Money May; but not Pretty Boy. This allows Leonard to be perceived as having a more diverse offensive game, when it was not the case. Leonard was just in the offensive mode when he fought, more than Floyd, and we love him for that. Leonard's fights with Hagler, Duran, and Hearns are still my favorites - above any Floyd has given us. But those fights don't exhibit more offensive and/or all round better technical superiority than Floyd has in his catalog of fights he has given us. Perhaps one could say this is due to competition, and perhaps it is. That said even when we look at when both guys fought obviously sub par competition in their early years, Floyd's dynamic moves and athleticism is are clearly better - even though Leonard's are sensational too. I have confidence saying this because all the moves I refer to that separate Floyd from other fighters, including Leonard, are usually the hardest for other fighters - whether I teach/coach them or not - to learn. Leonard's overall hit/miss ratio - against top or other competition - was never as consistently high and/or where Floyd's was and is too, and that is another pretty good measure of how good a fighter technically is. At the end of the day Leonard can be, and in some cases was, a more exciting fighter than Floyd. Floyd has cherry picked opponents and played the game - particularly as Money Mayweather - I agree with that; certainly no more than Roy Jones though.. Leonard cherry picked opponents and played the game a bit too, and that fact has been brought up many times right here in this forum; even by those that dislike Floyd. Despite Floyd cherry picking some opponents, he has also fought some that represent really decent challenges too, especially given his age, how many fights he has had, and the type of guys that Leonard and Ali were fighting when they had the same (or less) fights than Floyd. And Floyd has done all this without the dark clouds of extreme PED and catch-weight use hanging over most of his greatest fights. But with it all said, there is no way Leonard is a technically superior fighter to Floyd, as - even aside from how Floyd's superior technical ability has given him an obvious longevity in the sport that has clearly outlasted (in many definitions and ways) both Ali and Leonard - Floyd quite simply is able to successfully execute more skills and moves in the ring in championship fights. I'm not even going near the fact that Floyd is undefeated. The fact that you have (correctly) stated Floyd was a more fundamentally (technically?) correct fighter than Ali effectively supports the above views; unless one believes Leonard was better than Ali. However, even if you do believe Leonard was better than Ali, one only has to look at those times when Leonard was closing his career out and/or Floyd's age (or thereabouts) and under attack to see the difference. During those times - when Leonard was clearly unable to fight back as he may have otherwise and/or used to - he was unable to muster a reasonable defence and/or comparably accurate/effective offensive strategy; as his technical skills and style would not allow it. No shame there as SRL is a legend. However, it still describes an undeniable difference between his technical abilities and Floyds. That said, if you got a prime Leonard and put him in with a prime Mayweather Jr. I would have probably backed Leonard. Especially back then when the fight would have been relevant and when I was a mad SRL fan and didn't know of Floyd's skills. Actually, yes, come to think of it, I think the Leonard that fought Hearns and Duran - particularly before the eye injury, layoff, and subsequent Hagler fight - would probably give Floyd real troubles. And that's because - in my opinion - Leonard may not only know how to deal with Floyd's moves and defence - but he also may be too aggressive for Floyd to effectively use it. You see, to beat Floyd you must be able to (primarily) deal with his defence, offence, speed, and timing. It's not easy, as - contrary to popular belief - when Floyd is being defensive he is often being offensive too. Just most people don't know how that all works, so instead they - perhaps understandably - summarize and simplify what they think they know of his style. The end result - if you got a prime Leonard and placed him in with a prime Mayweather Jr. - could be that because Leonard knew how to deal with Floyd's defence . . . . Sugar's speed and aggression was too much for Floyd; as Floyd uses his defence (amongst other things) to slow the fight down to his pace, pick guys off, and hit guys not only when they're open - but also when they're extended and where it most counts. Leonard is and would not necessarily be faster than Floyd, but the fact he was/is still a fast combination puncher could really add to the troubles. The only issue there (for SRL) would be that he was quite open when in attack, and Floyd - if his defence was perfected enough at the time when they fought - would be able to counter him. Regardless of the outcome Leonard wouldn't be a technically better and/or more fundamentally sound fighter than Floyd. He would certainly be the more exciting and popular fighter though, and I love Sugar Ray Leonard. Good post Matt. Cheers. :) :) :)


-Matthew :

Storm, excellent post. Even though I may disagree on a few of your points, I respect your opinion and well-thought out response.


-amayseng :

An interesting point was brought up about whether Ali and Leonard were technically superior fighters than Mayweather. Let's look at this in closer detail. While Ali is almost unanimously considered one of the top five fighters of all-time, from a technical standpoint, he did many things that fighters are taught not to do. He kept his hands too low, he pulled straight back away from punches, went to the ropes too often, and almost never punched to the body. Fundamentally speaking, Mayweather does nearly everything correctly, especially head/upper body movement, keeping his hands properly positioned (although he does sometimes keep his left hand a little low to try to sucker his opponent in), and balance. Mayweather is a fundamentally more correct fighter than Ali, however, nobody in their right mind would ever say that Mayweather is the greater fighter. Ali is the greatest heavyweight of all time because of the risks he took, the era he fought in, the opponents he defeated, and the adversity that he overcame. Now, on to Leonard. In the interest of full disclosure, Ray Leonard was my favorite fighter growing up. That being said, I can look at his career objectively. For my money, Leonard was just as fundamentally sound (if not more) than Mayweather. If he wanted to, he could have been as adept defensively as Mayweather ,but that wasn't his nature. His balance was nearly perfect (Angelo Dundee said that was the biggest advantage he had over Thomas Hearns), he was almost never out of position, and he was much more offensively-oriented than Mayweather. The biggest fundamental mistake he made was fighting Duran's fight in Montreal. Sure, he was a little easier to hit than Mayweather, but that's because he looked to take his opponent out and wasn't content to play it safe and win by decision. Leonard (like Benitez and Whitaker) could stay in the pocket, make you miss, and make you pay. Mayweather is content to make you miss and hit you with one shot, while Leonard would let his hands go. Leonard's offensive game was much more diverse than Mayweather's. Leonard was a superior overall fighter than Mayweather, and he rates in the top 20 of many all-time lists for the same reasons that Ali rates as high as he does. On top of that, he was in exciting and memorable fights that successive generations of fight fans will continue to view. I don't think the same will be said about Mayweather.
Disagree respectfully, Leonard did NOT fight Duran's fight, he was hurt and had no choice but to fight Durans fight. Duran hurt SRL to the body, very early and SRL did not have his legs or ability to run around.


-amayseng :

Paulie's stance is garbage, he is completely sideways so there is no chance to ever have power arm punching. He has absolutely NO torque or snap, power on his punches. Straight back, bend over right and have nothing to offer. Hang em up Paulie you look terrible.. Nice to see Paulie and his big mouth take a beating though, as far and few between Garcias punches are.