Saturday, December 5, 2009

Does a March 13th date favor Mayweather or Pacquiao?

The super fight between Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather is seemingly going ahead on March 13th. No official word has been given yet, but sources everywhere are saying that the announcement is only a matter of time.

With that being the case, the pressing issue now becomes whether a March 13th date favors either fighter over the other.

On first mpression, the date seemingly further stacks the odds against Manny Pacquiao, who is still recovering from a damaged ear drum from his fight with Miguel Cotto. Manny's trainer Freddie Roach also said earlier this week that he thinks a March fight is too soon for Pacquiao, particularly with his injury obviously affecting his balance and stopping sparring until fully healed.

Although most boxing fans seem to be backing Pacquiao to win the fight, make no mistake about it, this will be the toughest fight he has ever had. Floyd isn't going to stand and trade punches with Manny, and he won't let him unload any of his power shots without making him pay for it first. Mayweather is also the bigger man, albeit with less punching power, and as usual will look to make his size advantage count.

This is all obviously countered by the advantages that Manny has over Floyd, but given that the fight will be so close, the smallest advantage for either fighter could be enough to make a big difference during the fight. If Manny rushes back into training and damages his ear again fror example the fight will have to be called off anyway. Similarly if he hasn't allowed proper healing to take place, the first punch Floyd lands might deafen Manny in one ear and throw his timing and balance off. Obviously these are worst case scenarios, but for a fight this big they arent a good idea to gamble on.

Pacquiao will undoubtedly come into the fight in excellent shape and with several game plans up his sleeves, but if Roach says he needs more time, then its generally best to listen to him. While the fans are hoping for the fight to happen as soon as possible, Manny has no obligation to take the fight until he is good and ready, other than his pathalogical desire to please the public.

All smiles for Mayweather (AP Photo)The last advantage Floyd get from a March dats is that he isnt forced to take another fight between now and a Pacquiao showdown. Rumors abound of fights with the lightly regarded Matthew Hatton, the kind of fight that would only serve to further damage Floyd's claims to be the best.

The only obvious advantage that Manny has by taking the fight in March seems to be that he might be able to ride the wave of attention that the fight will garner to get more votes in his election. Not only this but with this fight out of the way Manny can concentrate on his political career for a while before being pressured into taking his very last fight.

The March date does seem to benefit both fighters in some ways as well however. Firstly both fighters should be able to have access to their respective trainers, who are both in legal trouble or varying degrees.

Supposing the fight goes ahead in Las Vegas in an outdoor arena, March should also be a lot better for both fighters in terms of weather. A late summer date could mean fighting in 100 degree weather, which would obviously take a toll on both fighters should the fight make it into the later rounds. The temperature of course would adversely affect them both the same, although the fight itself will benefit from both fighters being able to stay at full speed for the duration of the bout.

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