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Mayweather's Wizardry Made Alvarez Look Ordinary

BY Frank Lotierzo ON September 16, 2013
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MayweatherAlvarez Hoganphotos2 b0292"I didn't know how to get to him," said Saul "Canelo" Alvarez in his post-fight interview after dropping a majority decision, which should've been unanimous, to Floyd Mayweather for the WBA/WBC junior middleweight titles.

That, boxing fans is basically the story of the fight. In Mayweather, Alvarez was facing perhaps the most versatile boxer/counter-puncher of the era, and he fought as a straight up boxer-puncher who showed no gumption or urgency on how to press and disrupt Mayweather's flow and timing. Alvarez showed little or no head movement and basically walked straight in and in turn was lead around the ring and controlled by Floyd's quick jabs and right hands.

As it was stated here before the fight in my pre-fight prediction: "The only way Canelo can win is if he can turn the bout into a street fight. It's his only option. He can't win by waiting and reacting or boxing, he must make Mayweather do what he doesn't want to. I don't think he's capable, he's not the puncher he's been built up to be, and I'm not convinced that Alvarez won't be compromised by having to weigh-in at 152 or less."

Well, as it turned out I don't think the weight would've changed much. Canelo didn't look as strong as he's looked in other bouts, however Mayweather's underrated physical and core strength probably had a lot to do with why it appeared Mayweather (45-0 with 22 KOs) was never bothered by any of Alvarez's finishing hooks and right hands. Canelo's problem in the fight turned out to be that a) he couldn't make Floyd do anything he wanted him to and b) was ineffective at forcing Mayweather to do a single thing that he didn't want to.

I had it 10-2/118-110 for Mayweather (seen above, landing, in Tom Hogan-Golden Boy photo) for the record.

It had to be obvious to Alvarez and his brain trust that he had about as much chance at besting Floyd fighting a wait and react style as, say, "Smokin" Joe Frazier trying to out-box Muhammad Ali from outside and at center ring. And forget about Alvarez trying to out think or out box Mayweather fighting at a somewhat measured pace...it just couldn't happen.

Therefore Alvarez was left with one choice on how to go about attacking Mayweather and giving himself his best and really only chance at scoring the upset -- and that was to pressure Mayweather and try to make him have to fight him off. Even at that, it's doubtful that he could've sustained that type of style versus Mayweather, but it would've at the least given him a chance to get lucky with a lottery punch. Think about it, Canelo was never really hurt by Mayweather, but was too flustered to try and really go after him. On top of that his offense lacked the imagination and creativity needed to give Floyd something different to look at or think about. Instead of trying to make Mayweather uncomfortable or fight with a sense of urgency, he tried the oldest trick in the box against the wisest technician in boxing - and that was to inch back to the ropes without being forced, just in order to try and feint Mayweather with a jab and then nail him with a big left hook off the lead or a desperation over hand right as he's moving in. Only Floyd saw through this and was seldom bothered or forced to retreat as a result of it. What he did was stay at the perfect distance away from Alvarez and pot-shot him with fast straight one-twos and occasional counter right uppercuts when Alvarez over extended, leaving himself open and vulnerable.

For those who've seen Alvarez over the last few years, you had to notice that he's really not an aggressive fighter. He fights as a boxer-puncher who likes to set his opponents up when they come to him as much as he does by taking it to them. He and his corner had to know that if Mayweather was coming forward and it wasn't because Alvarez was hurt and he was looking to finish him, they were in trouble and losing the fight. It didn't take long for Mayweather to deduce that Alvarez wasn't comfortable initiating the action and that there was an open bridge and causeway for Floyd to push the fight with no urgency and also with the luxury of holding every physical advantage with all his weapons at his disposal. It also didn't take long for Alvarez to realize pressing Mayweather at a measured pace made him a sitting duck for Mayweather's quick and perfectly timed lead right hands and back hand uppercuts. Once Alvarez showed Mayweather that he was more perplexed than hurt, it was all down hill for him.

When it was over, it was obvious that Mayweather was too proficient, fast and sure of himself for Alvarez. Sure, you can say that Canelo lacked the experience needed to tangle with Floyd, but he was just as much physically inferior to Mayweather as anything else. Mayweather won almost every exchange and only engaged in them when it was to his advantage, that's how much he was in control. Floyd fought a brilliant fight against an opponent who may have his day in the sun down the road.

The way to beat Mayweather is to apply constant pressure, cut the ring off and make him fight three minutes a round and get him into exchanges when he doesn't want to. Even under these circumstances it's no easy proposition due to Floyd's speed, elusiveness and defensive capabilities. It is sufficient to say that Alvarez had no clue as to how to approach the fight and his skill set was exposed somewhat by the masterful boxing of Mayweather. In the early rounds Floyd was doing just enough to win but it was clear Alvarez was already frustrated. By the middle rounds Floyd put on a boxing clinic completely dominating the outclassed Alvarez.

I'm sure some will say that Alvarez was exposed, and he was. Then again some of us didn't think he matched the hype, despite how gifted and skilled he his. But the truth is Mayweather had a lot to do with why Canelo looked so ordinary in addition to the fact that Canelo was born to make Floyd look good stylistically. There wasn't one thing in the ring that a fighter does where Alvarez held the advantage, not one. In fact Mayweather even looked like the bigger puncher during many of the exchanges. So let's just say it, Alvarez wasn't quite as good as advertised and Mayweather is fighting as great as he ever has.

Mayweather looked much better in this fight than he did in his last bout versus Robert Guerrero four months ago. Maybe activity is the best thing for Floyd? If Mayweather is slowing down I don't see it. If anything he looks stronger and more sure of himself than he ever has. At this time it's safe to say there's not one fighter around weighing between 140/154 who can even give him a good scare, let alone defeat him.

Frank Lotierzo can be contacted at GlovedFist@Gmail.com

Comment on this article

jzzy says:

Mayweather will have trouble filling his dance card for next year. Let's hope Pacman has a resurgence of form vs. Rios. then the Floyd
Pacman fight will have to be made. I don't see any credible opponents who can stir public interest and generate PPV revenue.

Hop says:

Mayweather will have trouble filling his dance card for next year. Let's hope Pacman has a resurgence of form vs. Rios. then the Floyd
Pacman fight will have to be made.


With ya'!

SouthPawFlo says:

I know I'm stretching a little here, but he could (which I highly doubt) fight the Marquez-Bradley Winner..

Garcia with a Big-Time Fight on the Undercard.

Cotto in a Rematch if he looks Sharp Against Rodriguez with Canelo on the Undercard Vs Victor Ortiz

Amir Khan if he Blows out Alexander or Maidana if he Knocks out Broner...

Real Talk says:

I'm going to say what everybody seems to be overlooking. Canelo looked like a dead man walking to the ring. His neck looked skinny, he had no bounce or life in him, he stumbled in the ring 2 or 3 times and had no fight in him. The catchweight killed him. Floyd looked brilliant and sharper than I've seen him look in years and to me didn't need the help but it is what it is. I'm not the only one who says this. The fight was over in 6, Canelo had nothing to bring to the table. People don't understand how it affects a fighter not only physically but mentally as well. On to the next one. Danny Garcia is a true champion who finds a way to win and is becoming better and a more solid legit young champion with tremendous upside. The sky is the limit. Dueces

amayseng says:

I'm going to say what everybody seems to be overlooking. Canelo looked like a dead man walking to the ring. His neck looked skinny, he had no bounce or life in him, he stumbled in the ring 2 or 3 times and had no fight in him. The catchweight killed him. Floyd looked brilliant and sharper than I've seen him look in years and to me didn't need the help but it is what it is. I'm not the only one who says this. The fight was over in 6, Canelo had nothing to bring to the table. People don't understand how it affects a fighter not only physically but mentally as well. On to the next one. Danny Garcia is a true champion who finds a way to win and is becoming better and a more solid legit young champion with tremendous upside. The sky is the limit. Dueces


you better be careful , "The Shadow " is gonna be all over you for this post.

however, i agree.

i think floyd wins no matter what, but canelo was clearly exerted by round 7, no bounce in his legs in round 8 and by

round 9 he LITERALLY tripped over his own feet.

floyd knew this, it was his plan, right off the first round he was immediately pushing canelo back, making him

react and use energy..

brownsugar says:

I don't know about that. Canelo looked lively to me, all the way up to the last round. In fact he seemed more energetic than he did against Trout.

Backed by an entire country... (Leading to the surprising USA, USA chants)
And fighting for national pride (and personal gain) I personally thought Canelo did his best mount the head of Floyd Mayweather over his mantle place.

Frustration and embarrassment crippled Canelo more than the scales did. The moment he gave up the mental fight is when he gave up the victory. He may not even have been aware of it. But you could see it.

But its always great to hear from RealTalk. Keep it coming sir.

SouthPawFlo says:

Maybe I saw it differently, Canelo looked more gassed Down the Stretch again Trout, than he Did Saturday night

The Shadow says:

I don't know about that. Canelo looked lively to me, all the way up to the last round. In fact he seemed more energetic than he did against Trout.

Backed by an entire country... (Leading to the surprising USA, USA chants)
And fighting for national pride (and personal gain) I personally thought Canelo did his best mount the head of Floyd Mayweather over his mantle place.

Frustration and embarrassment crippled Canelo more than the scales did. The moment he gave up the mental fight is when he gave up the victory. He may not even have been aware of it. But you could see it.

But its always great to hear from RealTalk. Keep it coming sir.


You're on fire today!

Carmine Cas says:

Canelo indeed could have been hindered by the catchweight

Amayseng that is a good point, maybe that's why he did take the initiative and force Canelo to expend energy early

Either way, catch weight or not the outcome would have been the same with Canelo's poor strategy

puncher says:

Canelo looked fine and did a very good job. The problem was that he was fighting the best boxer on the planet. If Canelo had faught Trout that way Trout was out by KO!

Hop says:

Canelo looked fine and did a very good job.


Respectfully disagree. I came away from the fight feeling more unimpressed with Canelo's performance than I was impressed with Floyd's. Yes, I give Floyd some credit, principally for his quickness -- which we all already knew about, but I was quite surprised Alvarez didn't have a better showing and didn't even pursue (IMO) the only fight plan that ever made sense to me.

puncher says:

There is only one boxer that really got his hands into the FACE of MM and that was Cotto. He moved away and to his right to avoid that great RH of MM. The only problem is that he ran out of gas. Even MM admitts it. That Canelo has the same experience as Cotto nope. That your so called fight plan would work...maybe...but it is much easier said than done. Canelo did what he was able to do based on his skill level. He did box better than when he fought Trout...the only difference that MM is not Trout and that is where things get lost.

Hop says:

That your so called fight plan would work...maybe... [COLOR="#0000FF">No, in all probability it would not 'work', if by that you mean earn him a victory. I do feel it stood more than twice as good a chance of 'working' than what he did. Canelo did what he was able to do based on his skill level. [COLOR="#0000FF">IMO, not true. CA had the 'skill level', strength, and size to attack, cut the ring off, back Floyd against the ropes, and throw. Of course he could have. We can debate how effective it would/wouldn't have been, but he certainly could have aggressively tried it and did not. In my mind I felt the fight was virtually over when I saw how Canelo was cautiously pacing himself.


(above in post)

puncher says:

Agree to disagree...shake hands and move on.

Hop says:

Agree to disagree...shake hands and move on.


Sure.

Radam G says:

Wow! Sorry! But the red-headed hype was ORDINARY! It is absolutely nothing special about him. Naive people were making a lot of noise about him because he is a red-headed Mexican, which is not unusual but to the know nothings, stereotypers and assumers of the planet earth. In the amateurs, I fought about 40 red-headed Mexicans. In the pros, I fought three.

Danggit! I cannot think of any ethnicity that does not have red heads and blond[e] ones too. My tribe and immediate family are full of red and blond[e] heads. My son was born red headed. [His hair has since turned black with bits of red.] I have a red-headed sister, a red-headed brother, one with mixed red-and-black hair, and tons of cousins, nieces and nephews with red and blond[e] hair.

[OMFG! I have Martian relatives with green hair, and Venusites with blue, purple and pink hair. HEHEHEHEHEHE! HAHAHAHAHA! I'm just jivin' for those people who may be slow to catch on to a sneak joke.]

Back to Canelo. The Cinnamom is bossy to those around him and an average fighter, PERIOD! His gimmick was indeed people's inattention blindness to red headed of every ethicity on the planet EARTH! Quit exaggerating, people and catch a breath. Holla!

Hop says:

I cannot think of any ethnicity that does not have red heads and blondes too.


Uh ... Asians? Holla!

Radam G says:

YES! Asians have RED and BLOND[E] hair. There is a region in mainland China where 90 percent of the people have red and blond hair. The western world excuse it off by saying that they probably originally came from Turkey. We all came from somewhere. Holla!

The Shadow says:

There is only one boxer that really got his hands into the FACE of MM and that was Cotto. He moved away and to his right to avoid that great RH of MM. The only problem is that he ran out of gas. Even MM admitts it. That Canelo has the same experience as Cotto nope. That your so called fight plan would work...maybe...but it is much easier said than done. Canelo did what he was able to do based on his skill level. He did box better than when he fought Trout...the only difference that MM is not Trout and that is where things get lost.


Yeah, he had to improvise his hooks and jabs all unconventionally and stuff to even get there. And he just made an adjustment to take it away.

If it's not one thing it's another. Dude can adapt to anything until someone proves us wrong.

Hop says:

There is a region in mainland China where 90 percent of the people have red and blonde hair.


Reference?

Radam G says:

Just hit it up on google. A lot of the black and white Chinese have been completing in the O games for ages. Just google the whites and blacks of China. Prez O even have a look-a-like parental brother living in China.

Sorry my man. I'm just a TSS poster, not a pick-my-brain scribe. Holla!

Hop says:

@ Holla



Caption: "They've never seen red hair in China before and the kids asked to touch it."

Radam G says:

Not true, Hop. Don't believe that bullsyet. You are looking at a region of China. Just like in the USA, many people in New Hampshire haven't even seen blacks or curly hair. And in a lot of parts of Mississippi, they haven't seen Asians. Know before you blow. There use to be American bases in Taiwan and Hong Kong, and there are still bases in Japan and Korea. Just holla at U.S. military people stationed in those places. They will holla at you about Red-headed and green-eyed Asians.

Matter of fact, there are couple of readers in this Ûniverse who were in the U.S. navy in Asia. Let 'em holla at you about re-heade Asians. Holla!

The Shadow says:

@ Holla



Caption: "They've never seen red hair in China before and the kids asked to touch it."


Do you know how big that country is??? Just because one region of the country hasn't seen it doesn't make it representative for the entire nation.

Come on, son.

Hop says:

Shadow, do you just repeat whatever Radam says? LOL Seems like. Unless they are of mixed race (in other words not wholly indigenous Asians) they do not carry the gene for red or blonde hair. It's not even important to me, just thought I'd respond. They're not the only ones either. Same is true with Arabs and several others. But believe whatever!

But I don't want to put anybody off, so back to boxing. RL > FM. (smile)

Radam G says:

Good one, Hop! But no! The Shadow is not my shadow. And junk science of genes will not work. I'm reminded when ____ _____ were telling me that Asians didn't have the genes to grow pass 5-foot-nowhere. Now you have them in the NBA over 7-foot-5. Dennis Rodman is training the North Korean National B-ball team. And it has a 7-foot-9 player that the the nBA are dying to have.

It is all right to be wrong, Hop. Most of the world greatest discoveries come out of first being wrong. I've also seem blue-eyed, blond curly-headed jet-black people with razor-thin lips. Holla!

Hop says:

It is ok to be wrong, Radam. I just wish you were able to take your own words to heart. I never meant to jiggle your ego over this, honestly. I was just trying to contribute a helpful clarification. I'm assuming any studies from geneticists I would link would also be branded "junk science", right? My father was a career professor (PhD), and I can tell you that no knowledgeable person would ever have made such ridiculous statements as those you report regarding the height of Asians. But anyway, I was only trying to help. Believe what you choose, but my suggestion is to be open to a greater humbleness of mind, that's all. That's how we make progress.

Last word is yours if you want it -- I won't answer back on you. Well wishes, and I do like some of your boxing opinions.

Hop says:

FYI - Yolanda Ali (nee Williams) is a redheaded black person. She also happens to be fair skinned black person. DOUBLE ODDITY!


Are you serious? Can you really not tell that Yolanda Ali is of mixed racial ancestry?! -- with her freckles, red hair, and other features? You come on, son. (You're accidentally proving my point.)

Radam G says:

Don't worry. My ego is fine. I'm wrong often -- maybe five percent of the time. And I can take it. That's life. Show me a person who's never wrong, and I guarantee you that he is an untravelled, thinks-he-know-everything bigot. The travelled bigot knows better, but is just inattention blinded. He believes that the hair is dyed or the people is -- in your words -- mixed, or an other race all together. Holla!

Hop says:

Wow, so are you calling me a "traveled bigot"? Just wow.

The Shadow says:

Don't worry. My ego is fine. I'm wrong often -- maybe five percent of the time. And I can take it. That's life. Show me a person who's never wrong, and I guarantee you that he is an untravelled, thinks-he-know-everything bigot. The travelled bigot knows better, but is just inattention blinded. He believes that the hair is dyed or the people is -- in your words -- mixed, or an other race all together. Holla!


RG, leave it alone. So many holes on so many levels. As they say, "A fool takes no pleasure in understanding, but only in expressing his opinion." And arguing with one only proves there are two.

Textbook know-it-all who knows nothing (b/c of a dad with a PhD? OMG! Haha, if he only knew...). Kinda like Canelo. And we saw what happened there.

Let him quarrel with Denzoy or something.

Hop says:

RG, leave it alone. So many holes on so many levels. As they say, "A fool takes no pleasure in understanding, but only in expressing his opinion." And arguing with one only proves there are two.

Textbook know-it-all who knows nothing (b/c of a dad with a PhD? OMG! Haha, if he only knew...). Kinda like Canelo. And we saw what happened there.

Let him quarrel with Denzoy or something.


Sad, Shad'.

Radam G says:

Ethnocentricism and the need to be right when you are wrong aren't Asian things. Straight-up "The Ugly American" are that -- not America, The Beautiful. A lot of Asians comes to America and the Yanks -- the bigoted ones -- change their races/ethnicities. Holla at some of them from India, Bangladesh, Solomon Islands, New Guinea, Laos and Pakistan to name a few.

Your father may be this and that, but what are you? What is this position dropping of a father? Is that a bailout thing? Wow! Only in America! I hear that all the time. This 300-pound, fibbing, novice show off was in the gym in Lakeside, Cali, saying that his father use to be a Golden Gloves and pro boxing world champion. The tally-fatty challenged all 143lbs me to a sparring session. The result was a sweet kayo by me in 20 seconds. Some people are just slow to drop fantasies. As I said, you can google all of China and Asia and halt using a racist Bell Curve. Holla! And you will. Holla twice. Make it nice. Welcome to the University -- I mean Universe. Holla!

Radam G says:

The Shadow, you are right! I'm making like an atom and splitting from that beatdown. Hehehe! I gotta get ready to fly back to P-Islands to Big SIX D, aka Denzoy. Holla!

Hop says:

Back rubs take two people, I guess.

Radam G says:

I know that ___ ____ _____ ____ couldn't stop hollering. That is how the cookie ___ ____! Holla!

Hop says:

¡Aloha!

Hop says:

Your father may be this and that, but what are you?


I only mentioned my father's field and credentials b/c they were relevant to the topic (i.e. to one who cares about data/lit. on the subject). I thought it was an open and real discussion (perhaps naively); I see now they're really not, and that (sorry, man) you & your ... disciple? aren't fair-minded people. Posturing. You don't have to believe me but it makes me sad to say it. I've learned my lesson, though, so you don't have to worry about my interfering with your routine in the future. Maybe boxing-related, but that's all I hope to differ about -- but I agree w/you about that more than I disagree.

Oh, who am I? Well, professionally only a school teacher w/a master's degree. What means more to me are the years of pastoring, though, in the ministry.

Radam G says:

Don't worry. My ego is fine. I'm wrong often -- maybe five percent of the time. And I can take it. That's life. Show me a person who's never wrong, and I guarantee you that he is an untravelled, thinks-he-know-everything bigot. The travelled bigot knows better, but is just inattention blinded. He believes that the hair is dyed or the people is -- in your words -- mixed, or an other race all together. Holla!


I said that "The travelled bigot knows..." No way did I say it was "Hop." I was posting in general. Being a bit paranoid make shoe fit. But don't blame on me. I'm an innocent man. Hahaha! Holla!

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