Floyd Mayweather's Biggest Questions to Answer in Canelo Alvarez Fight

Steven Cook@@stevencookinFeatured Columnist IVJune 29, 2013

NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 24:  Floyd Mayweather speaks to the crowd during a news conference at the Pedestrian Walk in Times Square on June 24, 2013 in New York City. Floyd Mayweather and Canelo Alvarez are scheduled to fight September 14 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada to unifty their junior middleweight world titles.  (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)
Mike Stobe/Getty Images

Whether Floyd "Money" Mayweather Jr. likes it or not, he'll always be subject to scrutiny as the world's most famous boxer even if he wins every bout and he faces some pressing questions heading into his fight with Saul "Canelo" Alvarez on September 14. 

The 22-year-old Alvarez is no joke with a 42-0-1 record, and Money May will have to be on his game in order to keep his undefeated record alive and continue improving his case to be the best pound-for-pound boxer of all time.

Let's take a look at the questions Money May will have to answer in his upcoming fight with Canelo Alvarez. 


Can Mayweather Get His Knockout Blow Back?

Unbeknownst to many boxing fans, Mayweather has struggled to knock out his opponents in this most recent stretch of his career, and it's been one of his biggest points of criticism. 

Despite his 44-0 record, Mayweather hasn't been high on knockouts as of late. He's only won two of his past nine matches with a KO or TKO, with the others coming down to the judges' decision. 

According to David King of Yahoo! Sports, he's certain that a knockout could be in the works against Alvarez:

I'm going for the victory [with Canelo], but do I think the knockout can happen...absolutely. A lot of guys come in the ring with Floyd Mayweather just to survive, to say they went the distance with Floyd Mayweather. Things happen and that's the sport of boxing, but people don't remember how many knockouts you had or didn't have - they remember winners.

Mayweather is both right and wrong. 

On one hand, jaw-dropping punches and knockout blows provide boxers with that trademark moment that can help spread the result more. But on the other hand, all that really matters is who won the fight.

If Money May comes in just gunning for the knockout, he could get himself into trouble against a very energetic, poised Canelo. But at the same time, he could really benefit from striking his opponent with a big one and giving ESPN highlight-reel material for the slow summer months.


Is Mayweather Still Built to Handle Young Fighters?

Money May's career has been built on the ability to wear out his opponents with quick defensive movement and the inability of his foes to contain him. 

That same trait has allowed him to have success no matter how old his opponent is, even if they're a shifty, up-and-coming superstar like Canelo is. 

However, Mayweather is 36 years old and most of his recent experience has come against seasoned boxers who didn't come close to matching Mayweather's peak in-ring condition. The last one of his opponents who could boast that was Victor Ortiz, who had to be taken down in controversial fashion after a evenly matched bout.

I'm not indicating that Canelo will overpower Mayweather—arguably no boxer on the planet could do that—but he certainly brings a lot to the table that Money May's latest opponents haven't. 


Will He End His Career as the Pound-for-Pound Champion?

OK, this one obviously cannot and will not be answered until Mayweather hangs up the gloves for good. 

But with Mayweather aiming to do that after the end of his six-fight deal with Showtime/CBS, per ESPN, he's running out of chances to add to his legacy.

If Money May can continue to win in convincing fashion against the best competition out there, he'll put himself in the best place possible for that argument to be made when he retires from the sport. But one slip-up and the undefeated record he's worked his entire pro career to maintain is washed away.

Will the 22-year-old Alvarez bring too much into the ring for Mayweather to deal with? Will the 14-year advantage Money May has catch up to him in the late rounds? 

All of these questions will be answered come September 14, and the result of that bout will be a telling moment in terms of Mayweather's legacy.