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Who Is Ricky Hatton Sparring With?

LAS VEGAS - APRIL 28:  Boxer Ricky Hatton at The MGM Grand Garden Arena at the MGM Grand Hotel and Casino on April 28, 2009 in Las Vegas, Nevada.  (Photo by Denise Truscello/Getty Images)
Mark MedersonCorrespondent IApril 30, 2009

Ricky Hatton is extremely well prepared for his upcoming fight with Manny Pacquiao and will win because of his super-special-secret sparring partner. 

Just who is this secret weapon of a sparring partner, you ask?  Wait for it...wait for it...the "Pretty Boy," Floyd Mayweather, Jr.

And, what evidence do I have to back up this wild, stab-in-the-dark of a guess?  Nothing.  Nada.  Zilch.

Well, almost nothing.

Viewers of HBO's fight preview series, 24/7, may have noticed that they haven't seen one second of footage of Hatton sparring.

Many have speculated that this is due to the fact that Hatton is not doing all that well in these sessions.  Two black eyes earlier in his training only served to back up that notion.

But, what sparring partner is good enough to blacken both eyes of the 46-1 Hatton?  How about the man that put the only blemish on Ricky Hatton's stellar record—Floyd Mayweather Jr.?

A bit more evidence to back up my crazy theory; in the last 24/7 we saw a surprise visit from Roger Mayweather, Floyd Jr.'s former trainer.

Most boxing fans know that there has been no love lost between Hattons' trainer, Floyd Mayweather, Sr. and his brother Roger.  Yet, here comes Roger strolling in to camp Hatton.  Hmmmm.

Normally sparring partners come to the fighter's training camp.  Hatton's camp is in Las Vegas, home of the "Pretty Boy."  

If Floyd Mayweather Jr. is your sparring partner, you go to him.  Right?

Also, 99.9 percent of those who follow boxing believe that it is only a matter of time before Floyd, Jr. steps out of retirement and back into the ring.

Is it possible that the "Pretty Boy" is using these sparring sessions as a chance to get back into boxing shape himself?  Maybe?

In the post-fight interview, watch for the victorious Ricky Hatton to thank his super-secret-special sparring partner, Floyd Mayweather Jr., for getting him prepared to beat Pacquiao.

On the other hand, just prior to the fight, if the camera finds Floyd Mayweather Jr. ringside wearing white shoes and a white belt, bet the farm on Pacquiao because Floyd's retirement is for real.

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