School was in session late Saturday night, with Floyd "Money" Mayweather playing the veteran teacher and Saul "Canelo" Alvarez in the unfortunate role of up-and-coming student who gets punched a lot.
"The One" was supposed to be a legendary battle that gave the best pound-for-pound fighter in the world his greatest challenge yet, but in the end, it was just another clinical effort from Money.
Mayweather showcased his legendary speed and defense against Canelo, getting out to an early lead and coasting to the majority decision win, 114-114, 116-112, 117-111.
Mark Ortega of RingTV.com gives us a look at the final scorecard:
Final scorecard. pic.twitter.com/QXvxeHMy2p— Mark Ortega (@MarkEOrtega) September 15, 2013
Don't let the scorecard of C.J. Ross—who also happened to give the win to Timothy Bradley over Manny Pacquiao during their controversial 2012 fight—fool you. This was one-sided in just about every way possible, and Ross' decision to call this bout a draw is undoubtedly one of the worst ever in the sport.
Nevertheless, Money's transcendent performance was simply too much for one clueless judge to negatively affect.
Let's start with the stats.
According to Showtime Stats' Twitter feed, Mayweather had an absurd plus/minus of 23.7, meaning he connected on 45.9 percent of his punches and allowed Canelo—who entered the fight No. 1 in connect percentage at 42 percent—to land just 22.2 percent of his:
#ShoStats: Percentage of Total Punches Landed/Thrown thru 12 Mayweather 45.941% Canelo 22.243%— SHO Stats (@SHOStats) September 15, 2013
ESPN Stats & Info takes it one step further, noting that most of Mayweather's damage was done to Canelo's noggin:
As tracked by us, Floyd Mayweather landed 130 of his 224 punches to the right side of Canelo Alvarez's head. #TheOne— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) September 15, 2013
As tracked by us, Floyd Mayweather had a 186-62 edge over Canelo Alvarez in punches to the head. #TheOne— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) September 15, 2013
Sports Illustrated's Chris Mannix adds one more telling stat:
Mayweather landed 139 jabs. Canelo landed 44.— Chris Mannix (@ChrisMannixSI) September 15, 2013
It was a commendable effort from the red-headed challenger, but there was just nothing he could have done.
He attempted to stay patient early on, but that just resulted in Mayweather sitting back, eluding anything Canelo threw at him and picking him apart with jabs.
Alvarez responded with urgency and came after Mayweather, but that just resulted in the champ showing off his iron-clad chin and eventually opening up a bigger barrage of punches on the young Mexican's head.
For everything Canelo tried to do, Mayweather had an answer, and every single time, the answer was far more effective.
Barry Tompkins of Showtime Sports summed it up perfectly:
It's over. If u appreciate the art form, it was virtuoso. If u wanted a fight. Sorry. #TheOne— Barry Tompkins (@barry_tompkins) September 15, 2013
It wasn't even a bad effort from Canelo, who is a very good boxer in his own right and has no reason to hang his head after Saturday's result.
He just simply couldn't catch Mayweather, who was better in every regard, swatting away Canelo's machine-like offensive arsenal with relative ease, perfectly keeping his distance and choosing his spots at the exact right times.
Essentially, Money was Money. His elusiveness, brilliant counter-punching and ability to frustrate Canelo were all world-class.
We may not have gotten the back-and-forth, hotly contested battle that many were anticipating, but we got yet another lesson from Professor Money in the art of true boxing.
And it was worth the wait in every way possible.