Marcos "El Chino" Maidana has little to no chance to beat Floyd "Money" Mayweather on Saturday, May 3. But the little chance he does have lies in how effectively he can attack the pound-for-pound champion's body.
This is a strategy very few fighters are ever able to employ against Mayweather.
Part of the reason for this is because of Mayweather's majestic footwork. He doesn't give opponents a consistent angle for long. He's a master of distance and spatial awareness.
Just as an opponent might be set to launch a punch, Mayweather fires a swift, straight right hand that stings and temporarily blinds his foe.
The level of effectiveness for this vicious cycle is usually dictated by how much of a speed advantage Mayweather enjoys.
Against Maidana, the edge will be significant.
In an attempt to combat Mayweather's speed and slickness, Maidana must time his counters and attempt to smother Money on the inside.
Digging power body shots in close could wear Money down. If fatigue sets in, perhaps the speed disparity won't be as great. Thus Maidana would be operating on more of an even playing field.
Maidana figures to try to employ a similar game plan to the one he used to beat Adrien Broner. Some parts of that strategy are smart. Other aspects of it are not. Mayweather said this via Showtime Sports on Twitter:
Broner is more of a flat-footed boxer-puncher. Mayweather is simply a boxer who has mastered the essence of the sweet science. The sport at its core is about hitting and not being hit.
There's no one in the game who exemplifies that concept more than Mayweather.
Even with all these factors seemingly favoring Mayweather, there are people who believe Maidana can pull the monumental upset.
“I”m putting myself out there and making a pretty bold prediction but I feel that Marcos Maidana is going to shock the world by knocking out Floyd Mayweather in the 11th round of their upcoming fight. I have three reasons for thinking this: Floyd hasn’t gotten any better and is slipping, Marcos Maidana has just the right style to beat Floyd, and finally, Maidana has sky high confidence!”
To call that a bold prediction is like calling the Grand Canyon a crack in the pavement. That said, boxing is a strange and somewhat unpredictable sport.
If the unthinkable does happen, pay close attention to the punch stat numbers.
Body punching would likely be a major factor.
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