Records don’t lie. At 49-0, Floyd “Money” Mayweather would tie Rocky Mariano, with the best undefeated record in boxing history. Little chance that he won’t beat Andre Berto on September 12th. He has earned his place in history. Of course there is little comparison as the heavyweight division trumps all others. But it is impressive none the less.
Is Floyd Mayweather as good as he appears or have fighters simply not fought him properly? For years, I’ve been observing Floyd and analyzing the best was to fight and beat him. That doesn’t mean anyone today has the ability or talent to do it but he can and should have been beaten.
Probably the closest to getting it right was Victor Ortiz. But unfortunately he was a head case and was knocked out while trying to kiss and apologize to Floyd for an earlier head butt. There should have been outrage with the way that fight ended but no one had the guts to question the outcome. Mayweather clearly hit Ortiz when he was still trying to apologize. Bad sportsmanship…..Bad For Boxing!! But Ortiz did have the correct strategy.
Analysis of Floyd’s fighting style over the years has revealed the following. Floyd avoids exchanges at all costs. Not a bad thing for him because he will retire with his millions and his faculties but not always the most entertaining fighting style. Chasing Floyd around the ring is a bad idea. He’s probably the best of all time in fighting while retreating. So 1) No fighter should move forward and chase him as he has great ability to retreat while taking pot shots. Floyd, for the most part, is an arm puncher. He doesn’t knock out a lot of guys because unlike punchers like Tyson and Kovalev, he never sets his feet and digs punches until he has his opponent hurt. However, it does allow him to build huge point margins, which is how he has won the majority of his fights. 2) A fighter needs to be stationary or moving side to side while throwing combinations of punches. You cannot beat Mayweather by throwing one punch at a time. Unfortunately, no one has been willing to risk getting hit in order to dish it out. The best defense is a good offense no matter who you’re fighting. 3) Break down his body. No fighter has really made a concerted effort to work Floyd’s body. Easier said then done but no matter how physically fit, everyone’s body can be broken down. It would allow an offense to be waged. 4) Make a rough fight as Ortiz demonstrated. Mayweather clearly isn’t comfortable fighting that type of fight unless it’s he who’s dishing out the rough-housing. When the other fighter does it, he complains to the ref and he usually gets the benefit of the doubt.
Floyd Mayweather is a talented fighter no doubt but he has been fortunate to have fought in a time when there were no Duran’s, Leonard’s or Hearn’s type fighters. Mosley may have had a shot as he rocked Mayweather early on but he was years past his prime and unable to follow-up. Mayweather will go down as one of the greatest fighters in history but one who was completely untested. He never had his signature fight, one that defined him and that will weigh on his place in boxing history no matter what he or anyone else says.