It was recently announced that WBC junior middleweight title holder Saul "Canelo" Alvarez 39-0-1 (29) will be defending his title against former three division champ Shane Mosley 46-7-1 (39) on the Floyd Mayweather vs. Miguel Cotto under-card, this coming May 5th. Alvarez-Mosley is just another in a long line of set up fights that boxing history is replete with. Of course Mosley won't lay down for Alvarez, but he's only getting the fight because the money/management behind "Canelo" believe he doesn't have enough left as a fighter to score the upset. No one reading this can have a morsel of doubt pertaining to the outcome. Alvarez wins, but will it be by decision or stoppage is all that remains to be seen.
So let's be honest, the only real intrigue of the fight is can Alvarez become the first fighter to stop Mosley? Because in reality that's all he can do in order to garner high praise from the boxing media and set himself up for a mega fight with Mayweather most likely later this year. Floyd has already boxed circles around a washed up Mosley, but never once over the course of 12-rounds did he hurt Shane. If Alvarez can be promoted as the only fighter to stop Mosley heading into a fight with Floyd, the anticipation will be even greater for a more hyped up Alvarez to confront Mayweather.
Remember back in the late 90s the debate over who was the best pound-for-pound fighter in boxing used to go back and forth between Roy Jones and Shane Mosley. Depending on who looked the best in their most recent fight was usually the fighter who was seen as the consensus best over all in boxing. Those days are long gone now. Today both Shane and Roy are nothing but resume builders for up and comers, with the big difference being Mosley has a cast iron chin and Roy doesn't. Which in fact may turn out to be a detriment for Shane, because along with Alvarez not being the life-taking puncher some have portrayed him to be, Mosley will probably endure more unnecessary punishment as the fight labors on.
Alvarez, 20, has good foot movement. He's not flashy but his balance is good and he's always in position to punch. He's not real fast and can be easily tagged with lead shots, something that will be a big contributor to his downfall when he fights Mayweather. Saul can hit if you stand there and pose for him, but if he has to reset he isn't the shocking type power puncher some see him as being. This something that won't come into play against Mosley because at almost 41, Shane has no legs and can't get off.
Even at his advanced age the declining Mosley is willing to engage if he thinks the target is right there the way Alvarez will appear to be, something that wasn't the case when he fought Mayweather and Pacquiao, therefore his offense was almost non-existent during those bouts. And against Pacquiao it was obvious he signaled to Manny that he wasn't trying to win, in exchange for which Manny carried him for a few rounds.
At this time Mosley has five things, at the least, going against him heading into his fight with Alvarez.
He's willing to fight if pressured, takes a great punch and is very hittable. In addition to that he can't fight for a full round and his punch has all but left him. Shane hasn't been able to set up or create openings for years. So unless Alvarez stands in front of Mosley with his hands down and walks into something, it's unlikely Shane has enough left to hit and hurt him enough to swing the fight in his favor. Sure, Mosley landed a lottery shot against Mayweather two years ago, and after hurting and getting Floyd's attention, he never came close to hitting him on the chin again. As I said, it was a lottery shot.
There was a time when Shane Mosley was the pound-for-pound best fighter in boxing. He was a beast during his lightweight tenure. During his prime at 135 he just may have been the best lightweight since Roberto Duran. However, that was over 12 years and 20 pounds ago. On May 5th Shane will have to make a painful decision after he leaves the ring after his fight with Saul Alvarez.
This is no doubt the fight that most sophisticated boxing fans knew was going to eventually happen regarding Mosley and his career swan song. Part of what made him a one time great fighter is the same character that will be the reason he'll have to take a shellacking before he retires. His toughness and belief in himself that he's good enough to beat anybody keeps him going. On top of that, the fact that he's never been stopped gives him that last one percent that he can beat anybody on the right night. Therefore, until he gets thoroughly manhandled and stopped, he'll keep fighting.
Sadly, Mosley's ability to take a big shot will be a recipe for a long one-sided beat down before he's stopped by Alvarez. Hopefully either his corner and or a merciful referee will save him from himself.
Do you think Alvarez vs Golovkin will fight in 2016?