Chris Farina/Top Rank
Manny Pacquiao vs Shane Mosley expects to be a war while it last. Yesterday, Manny weighed in at 145 pounds while Mosley came in at a ripped 147 pounds. The fight is officially sold out. This is one of the rare fights where there hasn’t been trash talk between both camps. It is a testament to the great human beings that Manny and Mosley are. Both are great ambassadors to the sport of Boxing.
Sugar Shane finds himself in the same situation he was in when he fought Margarito. Everyone expected Margarito to crush Mosley. What was supposed to be Mosley last fight became his most impressive win. The question is can Mosley do it again. Can he shock the world this Saturday night in Las Vegas. The odds are against him. But this doesn’t seem to bother Mosley. He is used to being the underdog and being under pressure. In a way, he lives for moments like this.
For Shane Mosley to pull off the upset, he has to box inside and land body shots. Speed kills but when you can neutralize speed, it doesn’t become effective in the later rounds. If Mosley lands some hard body shots on Pacquiao, he has the opportunity to take away Manny’s speed and possibly stopping him in the later rounds. Mosley would also need to time Manny’s shots. His counter punching has to be superb against Manny. We all know that Manny doesn’t do well against counter punchers. Another thing is can Mosley trade punches with Pacquaio. Will he actually go toe to toe with Manny. I think Mosley is capable but Manny won’t risk himself trading punches with Mosley.
As for Pacquaio, I see him doing the same thing that Mosley might try to do against him and that is work the body. At 39 years of age, I don’t think Mosley can handle a faster pace. If Pacquaio pounds the body and gives him different angles then comes up with a 4-5 combination then its going to be a long night for Mosley. Pacquiao should avoid being caught up in the ropes. He tends to be caught up in the ropes and lets his opponents throw couple of shots. With Mosley, he shouldn’t do this. Mosley will take advantage of it and will land some heavy blows. For Pacquiao to win, he needs to keep the fight in the center of the ring. He should try to work the body, come in and out and land some quick combinations.
The only way I see Pacquiao knocking out Mosley is if Mosley has completely ran out of gas. If that’s the case, we should see a stoppage around the 11th round. Another scenario is if he is behind in the scorecards and he is taking too much punishment. I think Richardson might throw in the towel.
Mosley’s chances of winning around in the middle rounds. If he is to shock the world by knocking out Pacquaio, I see that happening between rounds 6-8. In fact, that is the only way I see Mosley winning, by knocking out Manny. The fight will be competitive for the first half of the fight. The second half will be total domination from Pacquiao. I have Pacquaio winning via a unanimous decision.