Boxing


Hatton Mayweather: Does Ricky Have The Heart To Beat Floyd?

floyd mayweather jr.04.12.07 - By David Tyler: It's less than a week before the big fight and no one this side of Manchester, England is giving Ricky Hatton any chance to beat Floyd Mayweather Jr. I'm not that convinced of a sure Mayweather victory. I've seen a similar fight that should be drawing comparisons to the December 8th rumble in Las Vegas.

Let's take a look back to March 8th in the year 1971. I'm referring to the Muhammad Ali/ Joe Frazier fight. Muhammad Ali was considered the best pound for pound champion in the world, and justifiably so as his lighting quick hands and feet had all opponents hopelessly chasing him around the ring. His top weapon was his quick wit combined with humiliating insults about his opponent. Ali called Frazier a gorilla, Uncle Tom, and even had some believing that Joe was a white man. Ali appeared determined to crack the mental toughness of Joe Frazier and cause him to lose his sense of direction during the fight.

Joe Frazier was the underdog for this fight as many believed that he would be out boxed by the skillful Ali. Joe was not blessed with the speed of a Muhammad Ali nor was he gifted with the quick wit and the charisma to have the media eating out of his hand. Frazier was a tenacious fighter who threw left hooks in his sleep. Joe loved to fight his opponents on the ropes where he his hooks would be most effective. Joe was a humble man in life and this would also be his style in preparation for the big fight with Ali.

Floyd Mayweather Jr. has the hand and foot speed of a young Ali. Mayweather has mastered the art of throwing punches and using his foot speed to evade any returning punches from opponents. Mayweather also uses his quick wit combined with insults to entice his opponents into wasting energy by going for the early knockout. He has called Ricky Hatton a coward, cheater, Ricky Fatton (whatever that means), and a pussy (I know what that means).

Ricky Hatton is the underdog for his December 8th bout with Mayweather. Hatton is also a humble man that lacks the boxing skills of Mayweather. He, like Joe Frazier, is a determined fighter that prefers to fight against the ropes. His best shots are body hooks. Mayweather has done a good job of convincing the media and fight fans that Ricky has only beat opponents past their prime. That would include former champions, Kostya Tszu, Jose Luis Castillio. and Carlos Maussa.

We all know the outcome of the Frazier/ Ali fight. Joe worked his way inside Ali's reach and wailed away with body punches and left hooks to the head. Joe was willing to take several shots from Ali who was also at his best for the fight. However it was Frazier who fought every second, every minute, of every round. Eventually this resulted in a knockdown of Ali and the unanimous decision for Joe Frazier. This is arguably the greatest fight that ever took place on American soil.

For Ricky Hatton to beat Floyd Mayweather, he must use the same tactics that Frazier used to beat Ali. Ricky must close the distance and fight on the chest of Mayweather. He must throw tons of body shots and not let the wily Mayweather escape his reach. Like Frazier, Hatton must keep pounding away and throwing punch after punch that will eventually wear down Mayweather's stamina.

Old Timers will tell you that Frazier won that fight against Ali because he had more heart. This means that Joe was the more
determined fighter and refused to let up. Once he entered the ring for the fight, his demeanor changed from Bruce Banner into the Hulk! The thought of losing never even entered Joe's mind.

Does Ricky Hatton have the heart to beat Floyd Mayweather? Does he have the mental toughness of a Joe Frazier? Has he trained hard enough to be in top physical condition for chasing Floyd? Most important,
will Ricky give his all, every second, every minute, of every round?

All of these questions and more will be answered this Saturday, December 8th, in Las Vegas. This fight could quite possibly make December 8th stand for something other than the anniversary of John Lennon's murder.

Article posted on 05.12.2007



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