Floyd Mayweather has made a career out of a defence-first approach to boxing, but his Achilles heel against Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez could be rasping left-hook shots to his body.
So, could this be the time when the master of pugilism finally succumbs to defeat? Ladbrokes don’t expect a shock with Money a 1/3 shot for this unification bout, while Alvarez is 5/2 to inflict the first ever defeat of his opponent’s illustrious career.
Given the calibre of Alvarez, himself unbeaten in 43 pro fights, this is certain to be Mayweather’s greatest challenge since Oscar De La Hoya took him on in 2007, who is still the only fighter to have taken a contest to a split decision in those 44 wins.
WBC and WBA light-middleweight champion Alvarez should gain some advantage from this catchweight contest too, being a natural light-middleweight compared with Money, whose best work is done a few pounds lighter.
However, as we’ve seen in so many of Mayweather’s bouts, it’s his illusiveness and iron defence, combined with accurate counter-punching, which make him so hard to pin down and subsequently knock out.
As his career has evolved it’s become more and more about winning decisions than putting opponents on the mat, as four of his last five contests going the way of a unanimous decision have proved.
Thirty KO’s from 43 bouts tells us Canelo has the ability, but landing one on Mayweather’s chin is a nigh on impossible task, making the body his best option, either for a straight knock-out blow or to open up the possible money-maker to the head.
Whenever Mayweather has looked in trouble before in the past, the body area has been targeted. Alvarez possesses a really nasty left hook which he throws more like an uppercut to the ribs and this may be the best weapon in his arsenal to cause an upset in Las Vegas.
If the bout goes the distance therefore, it seems like they’ll only be one winner, so Alvarez is best off seeking the knock-out, available at 6/1, to end Money’s reign.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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