Mayweather vs. Canelo 2013: Why Money Will Wear Alvarez Down Late

Ryan DavenportContributor ISeptember 14, 2013

LAS VEGAS, NV - SEPTEMBER 13:  Boxers Floyd Mayweather Jr. (L) offers Canelo Alvarez his championship belt during the official weigh-in for their bout at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on September 13, 2013 in Las Vegas, Nevada. The fighters will meet in a WBC/WBA 154-pound title fight on September 14 in Las Vegas.  (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
Al Bello/Getty Images

Saturday night's headlining bout between Floyd Mayweather Jr., the consensus pound-for-pound best fighter in the world, and challenger Saul Alvarez should be one of the year's most entertaining showdowns, in part due to the vastly different styles the two bring to the ring. 

In Alvarez, "Money" will be meeting a promising young boxer who has quickly become one of the sport's brightest young stars, and his power-based attack has the potential to give Mayweather problems, especially early on. 

But Mayweather is 44-0 for a reason, as he's intelligent enough (at least within the ring) to combat virtually any brand of offensive push, so it's tough to imagine a scenario in which "Canelo" could conquer the camp. 

That being said, if Mayweather were able to draw up how the bout would go down, he'd surely aim to take the 23-year-old Mexican into the later rounds, and here are the biggest reasons behind that strategy. 


Money's History

For the most part, especially during the later stages of his career, Mayweather has remained unbeaten by wearing his opponents down, as was the case when he claimed victory over Robert Guerrero earlier this year. 

In fact, Mayweather, who is not known for boasting an overwhelmingly devastating amount of power when it comes to knockout punches, has relied heavily upon outlasting his opponents through all 12 rounds over the course of the last 12 years. 

Since 2006, Mayweather's won nine bouts, with seven having gone all 12 rounds and another ending in the 10th via TKO, so history's on his side as far as dragging fights along. 

Of course, if he gets the chance to land a decisive blow early, there's no doubting he'll deliver, but at this stage, Money knows that he can manufacture victories via strategically enduring through everything any challenger he faces throws at him, and that includes Alvarez. 


The Defensive Factor

One of Mayweather's calling cards is, obviously, his incredibly stingy defense, which is one of the big reasons why he's often able to allow his opponents to throw as many punches as they want, because they land far fewer by comparison. 

In fact, during his last match, against Guerrero, Money threw more than 100 punches less than his opponent, but connected on better than 30 percent more of his attempts, which was a deciding factor in the match. 

Against Alvarez, Mayweather will clearly not be able to match "Swift" in terms of power, but given his quickness and in-ring intellect, it seems logical that the five-division champ will be able to keep his younger counterpart at bay. 


Alvarez's Track Record

As noted above, Mayweather isn't an overly powerful fighter, but the same cannot be said about Canelo, as the reigning WBC and WBA light middleweight champion has a tendency of ending fights relatively early. 

In the last four years, Canelo (who remains undefeated at 42-0-1) has ended nine of his 13 bouts prior to the 12th round bell, as his heavy-hitting style clearly takes an immediate toll on his opponents. 

Furthermore, among Canelo's nine knockouts since September 15, 2009, seven have come before the end of Round 6, so if Mayweather can get into a defensive groove early, he should be able to tire Alvarez out. 

Canelo's power and ability to remain standing late into bouts has to be a concern for Money, but if things go according to plan, Mayweather will grind out another victory via decision at the MGM Grand later Saturday night.