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List of Articles by Joaquin Henson



FACTORS OF CONSEQUENCE

By Joaquin Henson
PhilBoxing.com
03 May 2015



LAS VEGAS. Here’s a breakdown of the 20 factors of consequence to determine whether Manny Pacquiao or Floyd Mayweather has the edge in their WBC/WBA/WBO unified welterweight championship fight at the MGM Grand Garden Arena here this morning (Manila time).
O Defense. Mayweather is a defense-oriented technician. His patented shoulder-roll defense is a protective shield that keeps an opponent from striking his chin which is tucked close to the chest. Pacquiao sometimes leaves himself open when on the attack. Mayweather says he’ll exploit Pacquiao’s recklessness. Advantage: Mayweather.

O Power. Pacquiao packs power in both hands and so does Mayweather. But Pacquiao has a higher KO rate, 66.7 percent to Mayweather’s 55.3. Pacquiao has scored 38 KOs in 57 wins while Mayweather 26 in 47. Mayweather’s brittle hands will be a handicap in trying to hurt Pacquiao. Advantage: Pacquiao.

O Adjustments. Mayweather has the uncanny ability to make adjustments in his style, strategy and tactics not only during a fight but also during a round. He doesn’t listen too much to his chief second, father Floyd, Sr. and relies on his own instincts to stem the tide. Pacquiao isn’t as quick to react to situations. Advantage: Mayweather.

O Corner. Pacquiao has seven-time Trainer of the Year awardee Freddie Roach in his corner. Buboy Fernandez, conditioning coach Justin Fortune and cutman Miguel Diaz round up the outstanding corner cast. Mayweather’s corner is headed by his father Floyd, Sr. Cutman Rafael Garcia, who has worked with Roberto Duran and Alexis Arguello, will also be on hand. Roger Mayweather, Nate Jones and Rolando Navarrete victim Cornelius Boza-Edwards are options to complete the madcap roster. Advantage: Pacquiao.

O Footwork. Pacquiao has dizzying footwork. He can go side to side and duck under Mayweather’s left jab with blinding speed. Mayweather has slowed down in his recent fights and it was evident in the slippage in the five months between the first and second Marcos Maidana fights. Advantage: Pacquiao.

****

O Jab. Floyd, Sr. proudly declares that the two things he taught his son to perfect are defense and the jab. Mayweather is a jab artist and likes to keep his opponents off-balance with a rapier-like left jab. But he also leads with the right straight so Pacquiao has been careful not to walk into a trap by overly protecting himself from the left jab. Pacquiao doesn’t jab as often as he should because he prefers to throw power shots. Advantage: Mayweather.

O Set-up. Both fighters are equally adept at setting up their big hits. Neither will likely go down from one hit. If there’s a knockdown, it will be the climax of a series of blows. Mayweather and Pacquiao like to throw combinations, usually 1-2s, because they don’t want to get caught in the other’s counter strike zone. Advantage: Even.

O Quickness. Pacquiao has worked hard in the gym to be in condition for 12 or even 24 rounds. He has both hand and footspeed. Mayweather isn’t as fast as he used to be and sometimes, fights flat-footed. He likes to backstep as a ploy to lure an opponent within striking distance but it’s not a quick move. Advantage: Pacquiao.

O Accuracy. In Mayweather’s last fight against Maidana, he had a 51 percent landing rate on an average round basis. He threw 326 and connected 166, compared to Maidana who hit 128 of 572. Against Chris Algieri last November, Pacquiao’s landing rate was 34 percent on 229 of 669. Mayweather is a sharpshooter but his drawback is he pulls the trigger a lot less than Pacquiao. Advantage: Mayweather.

O Workrate. Pacquiao throws an average of 55.7 punches a round compared to Mayweather’s 27.2. The different in volume is significant. Pacquiao throws double the blows that Mayweather does. In boxing, offense wins championships because a fighter scores only when he lands. It’s unlike basketball where defense wins championships. Advantage: Pacquiao.
****

O Intelligence. Mayweather’s high boxing IQ is unquestionable. He developed a keen appreciation of the art and science in his formative years as a simon-pure. Mayweather had a rich amateur background and took a bronze medal at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics as a featherweight. Pacquiao also has a scholarly understanding of the fight game but isn’t as exposed as Mayweather in terms of international amateur experience. Advantage: Mayweather.

O Chin. Mayweather has been knocked down only once and that was a fluke mandatory eight-count because he injured his right hand and momentarily, put a glove on the canvas. It appeared that he tumbled down from a right by Zab Judah in their fight but the referee ruled a slip. Pacquiao has been stopped thrice and was knocked out cold by Juan Manuel Marquez in 2012. Advantage: Mayweather.

O Midsection. Neither is particularly vulnerable in the body. Both can take body shots. Pacquiao nearly fell from a shot to the side of the body by Antonio Margarito but kept his legs upright. Mayweather appears to be in shape to run a marathon so his body must have been fortified in training camp to endure a gruelling grind. Advantage: Even.

O Experience Mayweather is 38 and Pacquiao, 36. Pacquiao has logged more rounds 407 to Mayweather’s 363 and more fights, 64 to 47. Pacquiao may not have had the amateur experience that Mayweather enjoyed but he’s made up for it by participating in tough duels. Pacquiao has survived despite setbacks along the way while Mayweather has never tasted what it feels like to lose. Advantage: Pacquiao.

O Motivation. Pacquiao fights for his country and people. Mayweather fights for money. While there is more pressure to win on Mayweather, Pacquiao is more motivated to win because he enters the ring with a noble purpose. Mayweather is the embodiment of greed and when money is his driving force, he’ll quit at the first sign that he may not enjoy it. Advantage: Pacquiao.

****

O Stamina. Both fighters are in peak condition, particularly physically. Pacquiao may be in better shape mentally. Because Pacquiao doesn’t treat training like a chore, he should be in better shape than Mayweather. With Fortune on top of his conditioning program, Pacquiao is ready to go as long as it takes to put consistent pressure on Mayweather. Advantage: Pacquiao,

O Balance. Mayweather is a shifty clinical stylist. He’s a naturally-gifted athlete who has excellent balance. His feet are never too far apart as to compromise his equilibrium. He has a perfect stance and form. Pacquiao is sometimes off-balance when he charges in. Mayweather’s ability to switch-hit may also upset Pacquiao’s balance. Advantage: Mayweather.

O Mid-ring. Mayweather likes to bring the action to the middle of the ring where he has the space to move around. At the center, Mayweather can take control of the exchanges, jab and run. Pacquiao must be able to cut the ring off on Mayweather so that it leaves little room for him to escape. Advantage: Mayweather.

O Off-the-ropes. Mayweather lures his opponents towards the ropes because he invites a target who’s coming in from one direction and he’s a sharp counterpuncher. Pacquiao also uses the ropes to take away an opponent’s jab like he did in the Miguel Cotto fight and trigger an exchange. Advantage: Even.

O Artillery. Pacquiao has a wide variety of punches and can strike with equal power in both hands. He throws hooks, crosses, straights, jabs, uppercuts, half-hooks, overhands and everything else to put an opponent on the defensive. Mayweather’s range of blows isn’t as extensive. Advantage: Pacquiao.

In 20 factors, Pacquiao has the edge in nine, Mayweather eight with three even. It will be a close fight with Pacquiao winning by a close decision.


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