Back Mayweather to be on the money against Sugar Shane
Sometimes you watch a fight and, after a couple of rounds, you can't believe you weren't able to call the fight correctly. Maybe you let your heart lead your head and made your prediction based on what you wanted to happen, recalling a fighter's glory days and ignoring more recent, and less impressive, performances. Perhaps a great record deceived you, and you failed to see that a fantastic boxing CV can hide the fact that the boxer has built his reputation by fighting a poor standard of opponent. Maybe you don't grasp just how difficult it will be for a fighter, great at one weight, to make the transition to a heavier class. Whatever the reason, there will be plenty of times when we take in the aftermath of a fight with that 'I should have seen it coming' feeling. The strange thing with this fight, is that the case for such an outcome can be made for both fighters.
Saturday May 1, MGM Grand, Las Vegas, Nevada, USA.
Mayweather 1/5, Mosley 10/3.
The myriad of unanswered questions that hover over the Floyd Mayweather Shane Mosley super fight are what makes this contest so intriguing.
I'll begin by addressing the man so many love to hate, 'Pretty Boy' Floyd , aka 'Money' Mayweather, a man who'll gladly tell you he's better than Muhammad Ali and Sugar Ray Robinson whilst miraculously managing to keep a straight face.
Firstly, his age.
Mayweather's 'Pretty Boy' moniker owes a lot to the fact that for a man who's had 40 professional fights he's hardly been hit. But agility and age don't go side by side, and the fresh faced Floyd who won his first world title as a 21 year old super featherweight is now a 33 year old former light middleweight world champion who's only had one fight since 2007, and that was against Juan Manuel Marquez, a career featherweight.
I can't believe anyone would consider that ideal preparation for a fight against a seasoned operator like Mosley who's been fighter at welterweight or light middleweight for a decade.
Secondly, we have Mayweather's recent record.
His first fight at welterweight came back in 2005 when he stopped Sharmba Mitchell, but since then he's only had five fights, and the most recent two have been against the aforementioned Marquez and Ricky Hatton, another man who was naturally a lot smaller than Floyd.
Carlos Baldomir was a plodding, brawling type fighter who'd caused a big upset beating Zab Judah, but never looked likely to pose Mayweather any problems.
Interestingly, Mayweather fought Judah after his loss to Baldomir as well. The final fight during this period was the eagerly anticipated clash with Oscar De La Hoya, when a card was handed in by one judge which, for the first and so far only time, had Mayweather losing, although he still prevailed on a split decision.
So if a prime Mayweather can be pushed all the way against a fairly old De La Hoya, can Mosley go one step better?
Well, just as with Mayweather, we have to look at Mosley's recent fights as an indicator.
He dismantled the iron-jawed Antonio Margarito and stopped him last January in what was seen as an upset, but later revelations suggested that Margarito had more in his gloves than just his wraps and fists pre-fight, and a last minute glove change, plus a subsequent year-long ban, suggest his mind might not have been entirely on the job.
Prior to that, Mosley looked like an old man when he produced a last second knockout to beat Ricardo Mayorga in a fight most thought he would stroll through.
If that version of Shane Mosley turns up, Mayweather will win with ease.
So which Mosley will we see?
This is perhaps the question that's hardest to answer.
Mayweather, for all his lengthy layoff and smaller opponents, will fight the way he always does.
He'll move in and out, throw ultra-quick shots, and most of all use his absolutely fantastic defensive work in an effort to make Mosley miss and miss again.
Oscar De La Hoya, Fernando Vargas and Miguel Cotto can all punch, but none of them had Mosley in much trouble and Mayweather won't go looking for a stoppage.
Mosley is fine at the weight, a naturally bigger man who will ask questions of Mayweather if he catches him clean; Mosley's 46 wins feature 39 stoppages, indicating a powerful, hard hitting attack to go alongside his rock solid chin.
But can he catch him at all? I'm not sure.
At 38 Mosley is the older man by some margin, and any questions concerning Mayweather's age have to be countered by looking at the man in the other corner; it doesn't matter if Mayweather has slowed slightly if his opponent is still not quick enough to catch up with him.
Make no mistake, Mosley is absolutely desperate to win this fight, and he will give everything he has until he cannot go on.
If they rise for the final round with Mayweather ahead by miles, you can guarantee Mosley is throwing the proverbial kitchen sink at him. However, the only case I can make for Mosley is an early, catch him cold surprise.
I think Mayweather's defence is just too good to allow Mosley to sneak into the fight as it goes on, and he'll use his accuracy to rack up the points as the fight goes on. Once he's in a position when he knows he can't be caught on points, he'll box tactically with one eye on the cards and another on not getting hit.
Some of Mayweather's counter punching is breathtaking at times, so keep your eyes peeled for some of this later on. Blink and you'll miss it.
He doesn't necessarily throw that many shots, but he's frighteningly accurate, which is always impressive.
Many would love to see Mayweather beaten, and I'm probably one of them, however I don't think it's happening this Saturday.
Maybe a very small bet on Mosley in the earlier rounds just in case one of his booming right hands gets through the guard of a slightly unsettled Mayweather, but in reality, it's Floyd on points all the way. Which would leave us nicely set up for the entry of a certain Mr. Pacquiao.
Recommendation: 1/2 Mayweather to win on points