Two weeks ago, Mayweather put on a clinic of various forms, in his defeat of Sugar Shane Mosley. Many would point to the slippery, angled, boxing gameplan that Mayweather executed, or the sonic speed jabs that he continually snapped Mosley’s head with. But what impressed me the most of Mayweather in this fight, was the way in which he endured getting socked-up during the first couple rounds of the fight. While Mosley may have been simply trying to make the show look good during the later parts of the fight, he brought his scrappin’ shoes early on; and it worked. The fact that Mayweather’s nose didn’t swell from the connections Mosley made early on, may have said something about the power of the punches, but Mayweather’s knees told a different story.
Despite the shock of the early thumping, Mayweather did something impressive: he went forward. Though he was tactical about it, Mayweather never shied away from putting his nose back into the “knuckle zone” (the knuckle zone ends where the other fighters knuckles can’t reach). And as the fight went on Mayweather met less gloved knuckles in the knuckle zone, which in turn provided additional space for him to run his mouth. In the end, Mayweather showed that he has a champs chin, and that is the primary reason that he is still the WBA World Welterweight Champion.
Now back to what I first said about Mayweather having a big mouth. Muhammad Ali seemed to start the whole “loud mouth boxer” routine, but if you know anything about Ali, you know that he was so witty and brilliant that he may have been pulling a trick on someone that the person would only recognize far after the fact. Ali did this in all facets of his boxing career, and in the ring, nobody knows Ali’s mouthtricks better than George Foreman (See: The Rumble in the Jungle and The Rope-a-Dope). I bring this up because of Mayweather’s ongoing claims that he, and not Muhammad Ali, is The Greatest of All-Time (G.O.A.T.)
Now first of all, let me get this out, “Fool, Please”, as a response to Mayweather’s claim (or “Please, Fool” if you want to sound stiff and grammatically correct). Now obviously Mayweather is trying to fertilize his financial legacy through making this salacious claim, but out of respect, he needs to at least always add a disclosure when he spouts that mess. Something like: “I’m the Greatest if you don’t count the fact that Ali changed the World through this simple, elegant, and brutal sport, but also laid the foundations for me to make all the money I make from running my mouth and backing it up with my fists.”
In a recent interview Mayweather spoke of the fact that he never had to use any rope-a-dope tactics to win any fights like Ali did. Once again, “Fool, Please!” Men shouldn’t hit women, and women shouldn’t try to fight men. And though Mayweather is not a woman, at 5’8” and “not enough” pounds Mayweather might as well be a fancy young lady if he were to take a full-on haymaker from George Forman in his prime; and I’m right there with him at 5’11” and “not' enough”. If you lined up every man on the planet and gave them the choice of taking a punch from Mike Tyson in his prime, or George Foreman in his prime, at one glance every man would shift to the Mike Tyson line (though that’s a bad situation all around)
Now I’m sorry. I like to watch all sizes of gentleman lace the gloves up, but unless Mayweather had a slingshot, a stone, and a righteous blessing from God upon all the generations that shall follow the Mayweather lineage, then Floyd couldn’t beat not one soul that Ali fought. And I don’t want to here nothin’ about “pound-for-pound” or “strictly boxing” --Ali just deserves his respect all-around.
Though the glories of the Heavyweight boxing division are on life support at best these days, when it comes to the G.O.A.T. claims, you at least have be bigger than a goat, and nobody should be able to call you “Small Fry”. But I’ll give Mayweather this: he’s got plenty of fertilizer, and he’s undefeated as a pro. Now if he spouts some poetic fertilizer and stands out front for immigration rights or something, then…he’d still get knocked out by Foreman.