Overlooked Key to Canelo Victory and Undercard Thoughts

By Matt Andrzejewski on September 10, 2013

Mayweather Vulnerability?

Most experts feel that Saul “Canelo” Alvarez is facing an uphill challenge when he enters the ring on Saturday night against Floyd Mayweather Jr. Many feel Mayweather’s blinding hand speed and movement along with his superior defensive ability will be too much for Canelo to overcome. So how can Canelo solve the Mayweather puzzle? Well there is one possibility that few have tried that may present Canelo with his best option of success in the bout.

As stated above, Mayweather is a superior defensive fighter. As a matter of fact, his overall defensive skills are vastly underrated in my opinion. He rarely gets hit flush and knows how to pick off punches minimizing their total impact.  Mayweather is also brilliant at rolling with punches which also takes away from the impact of the blow.

However, there is one area that Mayweather is vulnerable. He can be hit with the straight right to the body, particularly when against the ropes. Mayweather’s head movement is superb and right elbow generally positioned perfectly to pick off the left hook to the body. But that straight right hand downstairs will land whenever it is thrown by Canelo.

So why don’t Mayweather opponents try to land this punch more often? The answer is that when throwing the straight right downstairs, a fighter is very open to counter shots. And Mayweather may be the best counter puncher is the sport today so his opponents are very weary to unload with that punch.

I do look for Canelo to throw and land the straight right hand to the body of Mayweather. Will it have an impact and will Mayweather discourage Canelo from throwing that punch as the fight moves on by successfully countering? The answer to that is unclear at the moment. But the straight right hand to the body may be Canelo’s best punch and best shot at getting to Mayweather on Saturday night.

Garcia-Matthysse

The Danny Garcia-Lucas Matthysse bout may the best undercard pay-per-view fight in the sport’s history. I do think fans are in for an exciting bout that ends in a relatively early knockout.

Matthysse is a much better boxer than most give him credit. He utilizes a good well-timed jab to set up his power shots. In addition, he uses lateral movement to set up the perfect angles to land his punches flush and with full force.

Garcia is a classic boxer puncher. He is undoubtedly quicker and will try to work combinations off a double and triple jab. Garcia needs to keep this fight at just the right distance to get his work done and stay out of harm’s way.

I think Garcia is going to get off to a quick start. But that will short lived as Matthysse is typically a slow starter. Once Matthysse sees what is in front of him, he will go to work. Matthysse will find a way to get in range with that well-timed jab and land his power shots. Garcia is a classic Philadelphia fighter and is bound to exchange with Matthysse once things heat up. If it becomes a battle of chins, which it may, I think Matthysse’s is superior and Garcia ends up getting knocked out within four rounds.

Smith-Molina

A lot of boxing fans are really down on the Ishe Smith-Carlos Molina fight. I actually believe this fight will be a lot better than most are anticipating.

First of all, it’s an interesting matchup of styles. Molina needs to be on the inside to get his work done. He will constantly be trying to work his way in behind his jab and then going to work with combinations to the head and body once on the inside.

On the flip side, Smith will want to keep things on the outside. As Molina attempts to get to the inside, look for Smith to try to make him pay by landing his own combinations. And Smith is also not afraid to work himself on the inside which could make for some fun exchanges.

And here is one other thing to keep in mind. Both Smith and Molina are fighting on a major stage for the first time with something to prove. Whoever wins this fight will assuredly get bigger things and bigger paychecks down the line. For the loser, it will be a long way to get back to this point. Generally, good fights occur when fighters are this motivated with so much on the line.

I expect to see a close competitive fight between Smith and Molina. Molina is the busier fighter historically and I think his activity will be the difference as he prevails with a close unanimous decision victory.

Theophane-Cano

The opening bout between Ashley Theophane and Pablo Cesar Cano may actually provide some pretty good action. Cano, in particular, really can’t be in a bad fight because of his style.

Cano is a classic brawler. He will willingly absorb punches to get to the inside and unleash his own attack. Cano will also constantly try to work the body on the inside which makes him very vulnerable upstairs. And he doesn’t move his much which just makes him a sitting duck if his opponents let their hands go.

Theophane is an awkward fighter who gave Danny Garcia a very tough fight a few years ago. Theophane is a not a big puncher and will likely try to fight smart behind the jab. He will try to pick his spots to let his hands go and hope to keep Cano from getting to the inside.

I think this is going to be a close fight and one that is very tough to score. Cano is limited defensively so Theophane is bound to land eye popping shots from the outside. And he should even catch some clean shots to the head of Cano on the inside in spots. Theophane will probably also be a bit more active as well. But if Cano gets inside, he will rip hard punches to the head and body of Theophane. What will be more impressive in the eyes of the judges? My guess is Theophane’s slightly higher work rate and cleaner punches to the head will get him a close split decision win.

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  1. Your Name 06:27pm, 09/18/2013

    Mayweather vulnerability? None!

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