What Floyd Mayweather Can Learn from Jon Jones' Near Upset at UFC 165
Floyd Mayweather won't be returning to the ring until May 2014, reports Joseph Santoliquito of CBSPhilly.com, and boxing's pound-for-pound king needs to take Jon Jones' bout at UFC 165 to heart and not be lax during his off time.
Santoliquito cites that Danny Garcia could be Mayweather's next opponent, and Mayweather will need to train hard to remain undefeated and move to 46-0. If his previous fight against Saul "Canelo" Alvarez proved anything, it's that Mayweather is not the same fighter he once was. Sure, the victory was pretty decisive, but Canelo took Mayweather down to the wire and fought a great fight.
Mayweather will likely take a vacation or two during his eight-month hiatus from the ring. After putting his body through the ringer twice in 2013, Mayweather deserves that time off. He should not, however, be taking his time away from the ring as an eight-month vacation. Mayweather needs to train—and train hard.
Just look at how Jones was manhandled by Alexander Gustafsson at UFC 165. Jones ultimately came out with the tough win, but he was barely able to give interviews after the fight because of how badly he was beaten up. He even left on a stretcher following the fight.
Jones, widely considered the best fighter in the mixed martial arts world, proved to be human against Gustafsson. He also proved his determination and will to succeed against a seemingly more powerful fighter, but the fact remains that Jones' fight should work as a wake up call of sorts for Mayweather.
The auras surrounding Mayweather and Jones are strikingly similar. Each fighter is at the top of his respective sport and has been considered unbeatable at the highest point in each of their careers.
Canelo gave Mayweather a run for his money, but Gustafsson absolutely pummeled Jones. If I'm Mayweather, then I'm taking that UFC match in and looking to make adjustments in my own training style.
Sure, professional boxing and UFC are different sports. One is obviously more physical than the other, but the fact remains that both sports pit professional fighters against each other. Mayweather's quest for 50-0 can come to fruition by the end of 2014, but he'll have to stay on top of his game.
Is Jones' fight worth taking to heart for Mayweather?
Even if he is physically overpowered in a victory, Mayweather can't afford to have those fights at age 36 (37 by his next fight). Beatdowns like Jones received will carry over into future fights for somebody in Mayweather's position, so he'll need to work his hardest to be sure that doesn't happen.
Asking Mayweather to focus on training—and only training—from now until May is unreasonable. He'll continue to make headlines doing plenty of things outside of the sport—like betting on Johnny Manziel, for example.
His personality is one that brings excitement to the sport of boxing, but his fighting skills are what have made him one of the most renowned fighters in the sport's history. If he wants to maintain perfection and keep pace for 50-0, then he'll have to hit the gym hard—harder than he ever has before.
He just can't afford a slip-up at this point in his storied career.
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