Thoughts on……”The One”

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By Mateo Banegas

Don’t worry, I am not going to tell you that the Blood Money Team told you so, but I am going to use a few lines to share some thoughts from last night.

First – Definitely not The One:

Ishe Smith vs. Carlos Molina. As a good friend of mine, who is a HUGE boxing fanatic, once told me – boxing is like sex, any is good. What does this have to do with anything, you ask? Well, the IBF super-welterweight championship bout between Smith and Molina was a perfect example of this expression. While it may not have been an action-packed fight, fans were able to see professional boxing between two of the 2nd-tier boxers in the welterweight division, even though it was for a belt. Congratulations to Molina for capturing the IBF title. But I don’t see Molina holding on to this belt for long. Especially, if his next bout comes against any of the fighters who should be in the running for that belt and happen to be in the top-tier of the middleweight division, like Trout, Lara or Alvarez.

Second – Soon, may be The One:

Danny Garcia vs. Lucas Matthysse: All I can say is that Danny Garcia was impressive last night. Garcia not only confirmed his technical soundness, he also showed the world his patience, ability to move effectively and ring intelligence. Neither Garcia nor Matthysse fought in their typical aggressive style, but a lot of this has to do with Garcia. He eliminated Matthysse’s biggest threat, punching power, by using the ring to his advantage. By doing this Garcia was able to exploit Matthysse’s defense, landing powerful shots, including several of his famous left hooks. Garcia’s left hook ended up being the defining punch of the fight, turning Matthysse into a one-eyed boxer who couldn’t see Garcia’s dangerous lefts coming in for the landing. Regardless, no one can deny Matthysse is a warrior and, had his eye not closed, it would have been a completely different fight. But, in the end, Garcia fought like a true champ and showed why he is a force to be reckoned with in the junior welterweight division.

Last – Why he is “The One” 

Floyd Mayweather vs. Canelo Alvarez: There is not much that needs to be said about this fight. Money May did what he does best, display defensive superiority and calculated offense, while showing everyone why Canelo just isn’t ready to take his throne yet. Don’t get me wrong. Canelo had some moments of light – backing Mayweather against the ropes, landing some good right hand shots and quick combos.  But most of his shots either missed Floyd or hit his gloves. Mayweather, on the other hand, was able to pick Canelo apart, landing punches at will against the outmatched Alvarez. Even though we are all aware of Mayweather’s talent, he never ceases to amaze as he picks apart every opponent who steps up. In the end, while the pound-for-pound king remains on his thrown, us fans welcome the next worthy combatant, excited to see if Mayweather will ever be dethroned.

Where’s the BluePrint?

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By Rudy Mondragon

On September 14, 2013 Floyd Mayweather (45-0, 26 KOs) took on Saul “Canelo” Alvarez (42-1-1, 30 KOs) in a match titled “The One.” It was the main event on a card that I believed would not be as fun and exciting as the undercard fight that included Lucas Matthysse and Danny Garcia. I was wrong. The match between Canelo and Mayweather was a chess match. It was professor versus student. Canelo came in with a game plan, but quickly realized the speed of Mayweather was superior to any previous opponent he has faced. At times, you could see Mayweather thinking in the ring.

The first two rounds were fought as expected. Mayweather was reading, studying and processing in his mind the necessary adjustments need to apply against Canelo. Mayweather started more aggressive that past fights, appearing to make a statement and let Canelo know Mayweather would control the fight. He used his jab and Canelo’s stationary head was an easy target. Canelo was trying to impose his size and power, as he appeared the (way) bigger fighter. The window of opportunity to make something happen in the first two rounds as Mayweather studied you came and went. Canelo was not successful, with the exception of a couple of body shots that electrified everyone except Mayweather.

In rounds 3-5 both fighters started to warm up. Mayweather was staying in the pocket and exchanging short counters and connecting. Canelo was looking for the body but was having little success as Mayweather would use the entire ring to create space between him and Canelo.

Canelo’s corner urged him to pick up the speed and attack more. At this point, Floyd was up on the cards and in control of the fight. However, the window of opportunity for Canelo was still alive. If Canelo could connect a solid hook on Mayweather, it could have changed the fights momentum to favor Saul. That window also came and went as Canelo was throwing and missing and getting countered. All the rights landed by Mayweather resulted in a cut and bruising underneath the left eye of Canelo.

Before the championship rounds, Canelo manifested his young age. Although a mature 23 year old, Canelo began to fatigue mentally as he had a Victor Ortiz moment. Frustrated by the signature Mayweather elbows and holding, Canelo engaged in a clench with Money and lifted his shoulder in an attempt to hit Mayweather’s jaw. The veteran referee Kenny Bayless caught it and warned Canelo.

With mental and physical fatigue setting in, Canelo was still searching for openings and gaps where he could catch Mayweather. The championship rounds showed a determined Canelo who refused to give up. Mayweather, meanwhile, used the entire ring to move away from Canelo, throw counter shots, and basically secure the win.

The fight went to the score cards and it was announced that it was a majority decision. This was very problematic as Mayweather clearly dominated at least 7 of the 12 rounds. He was clearly in control and Canelo was not successful in establishing any kind of offense, let alone dominance. CJ Ross, who also called the Bradley/Pacquiao fight in favor of Bradley scored last nights fight 114-114. Not sure what fight CJ was watching, but that was straight ridiculous. The other two scores were legit though:

judge: Dave Moretti 116-112 | judge: C.J. Ross 114-114 | judge: Craig Metcalfe 117-111

“I’m a little shocked at whoever (CJ Ross) had him on the cards. Everything is a learning experience. I want to thank everyone who came out to support me and support Canelo. Canelo is a young strong champion. Mexico has produced some great champions. He can take a loss and bounce back,” Mayweather said after the fight.

“Simply I couldn’t catch him. He’s a very elusive and intelligent fighter and I couldn’t find him. Yes, he’s a smart fighter. He has a lot of experience and elusive. I simply didn’t know how to get him, ” said Saul after the fight.

Where was the blueprint? Oscar De La Hoya’s claim to have the formula, pulled out of the vault, was non-existent tonight. As I mentioned in my prediction, it was important for Canelo to fully ignore any piece of advice Oscar De La Hoya gave Canelo. I don’t think Canelo took any of it, but I do think it confused the hell out of Canelo. Canelo is a great champion, but the reality is that he was 1, 2, 3 years too early in fighting Mayweather. It was not his time and it was not wise to take on Mayweather straight after fighting against Austin Trout. Canelo needed a tune-up fight to apply what he learned in that fight and then challenge Mayweather.

So what is next? I can see Mayweather and Danny Garcia getting it on at a 147lbs. Danny did very well against Lucas Matthysse and showed a little bit of technique and skill. It is no where near Mayweather, but it would be another good fight where Mayweather can out-do a young champion. There is also the possibility of Mayweather fighting A Khan. Khan just needs to win in December and make it exciting to be able to promote a fight against Money.

Canelo will need to have a tune-up fight to regain any confidence lost from last nights fight. He is a young man and has a lot of time to shine. He does have a lot to work on, though, if he ever wants to face Andre Ward.

Canelo vs. Mayweather: BloodMoneyBoxing Expert Picks

To the Blood Money Boxing family, thank you for your ongoing support of our blog and following us. The big weekend is here! Whether you see this as a mega fight or mega card, this weekend is no doubt an indication to all the boxing critics who say boxing is dead. From revolutionizing the way fights are promoted to fans camping out of the MGM Grand to see today’s weight in, boxing is more alive than ever.

Rudy Mondragon Prediction

A great fight on an even better fight card, Floyd Mayweather (44-0, 26 KOs) will face Saul Alvarez (42-0-1, 30 KOs) on September 14, 2013 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. This is a huge stage that Alvarez is not used to being in. 40,000 fans in Texas is much different than 16,000 plus fans in Las Vegas. Although it is a smaller number, the amount of pressure and the quality of the opponent that Saul will face is all new. Mayweathers resume speaks for itself, he has been here before, he knows the culture of preparation that it takes to win. Canelo’s biggest test was Austin Trout and that was his last fight. Canelo has had zero time to process and PRACTICE what he learned against Trout. To apply what he learned from his biggest challenge to date against an even bigger challenge in Mayweather was not smart on the part of Canelo’s team to take this fight. In my opinion, Canelo needed one extra fight to develop as a fighter and use what he learned to apply it in tomorrow’s fight. Floyed on the other hand, had a good tune up fight against Guerrero and will be fresh and ready to fight. Here are the keys to victory for both fighters:

Keys to victor for Canelo:

  1. Start early and start aggressive. It is known that Floyd is a professor of the game and needs the first 2 rounds to study his opponents. Canelo needs to recognize that this window of opportunity is small and will need to start aggressive to set the tone of the fight in his favor. Mosley started well, but took his foot off the gas and Mayweather made him pay.
  2. Attack the body. Floyd moves his head great, but his midsection stays in place. Canelo needs to attack the body in order to break down Floyd and set up dangerous headshots.
  3. Ignore everything Oscar De La Hoya told you. I don’t believe Oscar is the best teacher and does not recognize development of a young fighter’s mind. Canelo needs to have a mindset that he is the challenger, that he is in the ring against the best boxer around today, that he needs to win ever round of this fight, that he needs to stay relaxed, that he needs to follow the game plan and not get frustrated. He basically needs to throw away that “blueprint” that Oscar shared with him

Keys to victor for Mayweather:

  1. Be Floyd Mayweather. Study Canelo in the first two rounds and adapt to what Canelo brings to the ring. Exploit the weaknesses identified and capitalize on the mistakes that young Canelo will eventually make.
  2. DEFENSE and MOVEMENT: Canelo will try to go to the body, so Mayweather will need to use the ring and move. Movement and his signature defense will need to be in beautiful harmony because that will create his offense.
  3. Use the ropes to draw Canelo in and counter him, but don’t stay there too long. This will help in the later rounds as it will set up Canelo for a trap. If Mayweather does this right, he can set Canelo up to walk into a hard left, similar to how Hatton was put away.

In the end, I strongly believe that the 2 pounds that Canelo had to drop will for this fight will make a huge difference. Yes the extra weight that Canelo has will help his power punches, but I don’t see him connecting many of them. Having little success will morally fatigue Canelo, which will be new to Canelo. The extra weight that he had to shed will also fatigue him physically and he will begin to fade by the 8th round (we saw this in his fight against Mosley and Trout). As long as Mayweather does not hurt his right hand, I see Mayweather finishing off Canelo in the 10th or 11th round via TKO. Remember how the veteran, Juan M Marquez beat up the young Juan Diaz? Yeah, I can see that happening here tonight. Master beats up on the student.

Floyd Mayweather will win via 10th or 11th round stoppage.

Jarrett Bato Prediction

“One important key to success is self-confidence. An important key to self-confidence is preparation.” – Arthur Ashe

I’ve been watching Showtime’s All Access highlighting the journey from training to the fight night between Canelo and Floyd, and there’s no doubt that all the drama attempting to dissect a fight yet to happen is present in this documentary, executive produced by “Money” himself.

Canelo is portrayed as a young, hungry, and mentally matured fighter benefiting from the gradual but methodical rise through the ranks as he grew to the professional fighter we see today. Still surrounded by the same team, his preparation in training is convincing, even boring. Edison Reynoso might be inexperienced in the large sense of the boxing world, but he certainly has done his homework, forcing Canelo to train in conditions matching and exceeding Mayweather’s previous opponents. Strength and conditioning is there, and Canelo looks fantastic after the 3rd episode of All Access running up to the fight on Sept. 14th.

Mayweather, however, seems effortless in portraying how he basically has nothing new to share to fans in All Access. His preparation, according to Arthur Ashe, must be equivalent to that unseen mass of iceberg underneath the ocean, showing only the tip of that iceberg in his cars, ever-expanding “Money” family, and massive self-confidence. To me, it seems that Floyd is now underemphasizing the preparation aspect of his game. Canelo was half-right in saying “he talks that much because he knows the fight will be hard”. What he’s probably missing is that Floyd has probably doubled-down on his preparation to fight twice a year, repair fully from injury, and the mental games that he wants to play with his opponent.

Like Showtime says, Floyd’s home is MGM Grand, Canelo is fighting in his house, catchweight or not. Floyd’s tunnel vision/focus on his opponent has been refined and sharpened for over 20 years. Canelo would be naive to think that this Vegas superfight circus is something Floyd does for himself/the public, but it’s actually all for his opponent, such that all aspects of the game are in Money’s favor even before the bell rings. It’s disconcerting that Canelo’s attention is towards what Floyd is saying despite his camp being “distraction-less”. Canelo might show Floyd something new, but to the Mayweather team, it still won’t obscure the vision of truth to winning the night.

I predict a 12 round unanimous decision for Mayweather with some dramatic 4th and 12th rounds

Mateo Banegas Prediction

Finally, the bout boxing fans have been waiting to see: the pound-for-pound kingvs. the young champion. Alvarez showed maturity and development in his last bout against Trout, demonstrating improved quickness, punching combos and abilityto limit his opponents’ movement in the ring. Size and power favor Canelo, giving him great offense potential. If Canelo can use his quickness and land combinations to the body, this may slow down Mayweather, giving Canelo a chance in later rounds to land that knockdown punch that we all know his is capable of doing. But Mayweather is unlike any other. The veteran’s incredible ring knowledge, defense and technical skills are levels above any other fighter in the division (and probably the sport). Plus, Floyd’s championship bout experience is a huge advantage, since he has been able to adjust his game plan against many different opponents, time and time again, so that he gets the win. In the end, while Canelo may cause Mayweather some trouble during the middle rounds, Mayweather will remain the undisputed p4p champ, outpointing the young Alvarez.

Mayweather will remain the undisputed p4p champ, outpointing the young Alvarez.

Luke Givens Prediction

Don’t get your hopes up.  Anyone expecting heavy fireworks in this bout is in for a huge disappointment.  What you will see is an incredibly technical, incredibly one-sided victory for Mayweather.  Canelo is young, strong, and smart but against a crafty, quick, veteran like Mayweather he has little to no chance.  He moves well and is incredibly patient for a fighter his age but I haven’t seen the kind of one-punch power in any of his previous fights to give me the impression he’ll be able to stop Mayweather cold.  Which means that (just as in all his other fights), he’ll need to rely on good footwork and solid body shots to soften Mayweather up in an effort to finish him in the mid-late rounds.  Yeah…good luck with that.

Keys to Victory Alvarez:

  • Start Strong- Mayweather is a notoriously slow starter.  Take this opportunity to win rounds early.
  • Headhunt- He won’t KO him but he’ll look busy and score points for aggression.
  • Cut Off the Ring –  As great as Mayweather is fighting in the pocket, he’s even better in the open ring.  By forcing him into the corners you limit his angles and shoulder movement while scoring points for ring generalship.
  • Protect yourself at all time- Victor Ortiz! No seriously, Floyd’s sneaky just look at the Ricky Hatton fight. If you drop your guard for a second…

Keys to Victory Mayweather:

  • Weather the Storm- Everyone knows Mayweather starts slow then makes adjustments in the 2nd and 3rd rounds. So does Canelo.
  • Robin Hood Offense- Limit the exchanges to small quick flurries then retreat. By forcing Alvarez to give chase he increases his chances of catching him with clean shots coming in.
  • Avoid the Corners- The open ring is where Mayweather is at his best.  He’s incredible at using the open space to force his opponents to miss.

Jose Hernandez Prediction

Mayweather vs. Canelo has been hyped as a bonafide “mega fight”, “super-mega fight”?  Hmmm, let’s see if it passes the “mega fight” classification litmus test.  On paper this fight is promising:

Record: The 23yr old Canelo has a very impressive 42-0 record; Mayweather is of course 44-0

Record indication: Super Mega fight

Promotion: Golden Boy in partnership with TMT and their Daddies up in CBS have delivered a very palatable product.  If the fighters fought in the universe that is All Access, Canelo would win a close fight against Money.  (Shane and Oscar are well convinced of this false reality)

Promotional Indication: Super Mega Fight x 100 (as expected)

Drama: A lot has been made about the 152 lb. catch weight and Canelo’s apparent weight advantage(disadvantage).  Will he be drained, will he hydrate to 170?  How will Money fare with fighting someone so big?

Drama indication: DUD, Canelo will hydrate to whatever he wants on fight night, and Money will handle his “massive” opponent just fine.  It is a non-issue, remember Castillo?  I believe Castillo had a healthy weight advantage come fight night, that didn’t really help Castillo.  Boxing is not about brute force it’s an art, Mayweather is the Michelangelo of boxing.

Quality of opponent behind their record:  This one can be tricky, both fighters share notable votaries over some big names (Mosley, Baldomir, Oscar*) to name a few.  With one big difference, Money took on these opponents when these fighters were in their PRIME.  To compare fighters across the same opponents is just not possible in boxing; it’s a complete false equivalence (even when they fight them at their respective primes).  To define quality of opponent you must rely on the context and significance to the fighter’s careers as well as the respective place in boxing each fighter has coming into the fight.  Money had Corrales, both 23 at the time, hungry and ready to take on center stage.  Canelo had…Josesito Lopez?…Trout?  If I give him Trout, I actually didn’t have Canelo winning that fight, it was a Draw at best and appropriate for the Texas judging committee.  Josesito Lopez, kid had heart, but had no business being in that ring.  Shoot, I guess this is it, his defining moment!

Quality of opponent indication: DUD.  You know how dads tend to live their youth (as soccer players, baseball players, et.) vicariously through their kids, even far beyond their kid abilities and their kids actual interest in said sport?  This is what Oscar is doing with Canelo; Canelo loves boxing, but he has not reached his prime yet.  Dare I say, he doesn’t deserve to fight Money, that’s right I said it.  He needs a Corrales and then some to be put side to side to someone like Money.

Money takes care of things in 11.  Corner waves white towel

Mayweather vs Canelo Promo

By Rudy Mondragon

Blood Money Boxing fans, check out the recently created Mayweather versus Canelo promotion video made by Gorilla Productions.

Promos like this definitely contribute to the energy and hype that a fight of this magnitude deserve. With the fight selling out in less than 24 hours and the breakage of the all time gate record, fight fans will definitely turn out with high expectations. As the promo states, we will wait to see if the all time paper per view record will be broken. It will, no doubt about that in my opinion. The more important question is will this fight generate fireworks and live up to the hype and the expectations of boxing fans. For that we will have to wait till the night of September.

If this fight as properly executed as a chess match, Floyd will win by 12 round decision. If Canelo can find a way to strike blood and hurt Mayweather, it will be Canelo’s night. There are many more possibilities for a fight like this. We know that Mayweather’s legacy consists of the high profile fighters he’s faced in his career (De La Hoya, Cotto, Hatton, Mosley, Marquez and many others). Who has Canelo faced with the exception of Trout? That question is important because the stage and level of fight will be different come September 14, 2013. With that said and based on experience, we all know which boxer will have the edge on that night. 

Tune in September 14, 2013 and join in on the dialogue, Blood Money Boxing fans! 

U Can’t be Serious: Garcia vs Matthysse in September!

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By Rudy Mondragon

Historically, September has been a highly sought out month for boxing. Specifically, the weekend of or leading into September 16th as it marks the day that many Latina/o American countries celebrate their independence from colonial forces. Boxing promoters exploit this date, sell a high number of Coronas and margaritas and it makes for a huge pay day.

Come September 14, 2013 boxing fans will have a real treat as their main event feature will be Floyd “Money” Mayweather (44-0, 26 KOs) versus Saul “Canelo” Alvarez (42-0-1, 30 KOs). As fight fans, we love it. What we love more is when an undercard fight will also carry some serious weight. This is the case with the recently announced undercard fight between Danny Garcia (26-0, 16 KOs) and Lucas Matthysse (34-2, 32 KOs).

With the power that both fighters have, its hard to say that this fight will not end in dramatic fashion (via KO or TKO). With Matthysse clearing out his last few opponents via KOs, many felt that Garcia was avoiding the powerful Argentinian fighter. However, according to Leonard Ellerbe, CEO of Mayweather Promotions, it was Danny Garcia who in fact requested the fight.

Many are underestimating the power of Danny Garcia in comparison to the power that Matthysse brings. It is valid to say that about Danny given how he struggled in the late rounds against Zab Judah in his last outing. Zab made Garcia look like a rookie in the later rounds as Zab’s experience and ring wisdom helped him make that a more competitive fight. What Matthysse brings is high pressure, a good chin and power. If Danny was a better boxer with speed, i would give him the advantage in this fight. However, Danny has shown to be flat footed at times, throwing really round punches, leaving him wide open for straight shots. Advantage in my opinion will go to Matthysse in this one.

Although the Mayweather and Canelo fight seems to be the big draw for September 14th, it is the Garcia and Matthysse fight that really makes this card complete. Mayweather will most likely box all night and collect points. His best offense will be his defense and countering Canelo. Unless Canelo can catch Mayweather, I can see this fight being limited in action, but a great demonstration of boxing IQ and skill. For boxing purists, this will be a good one to watch. For those who like brawls and nonstop action, Garcia and Matthysse will deliver for you.

Sergio Martinez Eyeing Mayweather/Canelo

By Rudy Mondragon

Argentinian WBC middleweight champion, Sergio “Maravilla” Martinez (51-2-2, 28 KOs) has never been one to shy away from the best competition. His career has consisted of moving up in weight, chasing champions who were willing to risk their belts against him. Fighting at the 160 lbs limit is good for him, but lets remember that Martinez is a true light middleweight.

Although he sustained injuries in his most recent fight against Martin Murray, Sergio is already campaigning to fight the winner of the Floyd Mayweather and Saul Alvarez fight.

In a recent interview posted on boxingscene, Martinez stated that “it is a very good option (to wait for the winner of that fight). Floyd is the best fighter pound for pound, and Canelo, if he wins, would become of the best pound for pound fighters. My idea is to always fight the best, not turn away from anyone and I would be ready to face the winner.”

A fight with either one of those fighters would require him to come back down to his light middleweight form. He has not been at that weight since fighting Kermit Cintron in 2009. However, Martinez is a fighter who maintains good form whether he is in or out of training camp. The real question is whether or not he will be healed from his recent injuries. This late into his career and at age 38, healing will require serious time and therapy.

Time is no doubt on his side. He has the rest of the year to rest and also study Floyd and Saul. What Sergio needs to do however is convince the promoters, financial advisors and the people of boxing that this is the fight (between Floyd or Canelo) that needs to happen in 2014.

Money vs. Canelo Photo shoot

By Rudy Mondragon

Less than three months from the September 14th showdown between Floyd “Money” Mayweather and Saul “Canelo” Alvarez. Showtime is already prepping for the promotional campaign and photos of their first photo shoot were released earlier this week. Does not appear to be the Floyd Mayweather that got all up in Robert “The Ghost” Guerrero’s face. We will have to wait to see the first Showtime All Access. With the language gap, it will be interesting to see what kind of mind games and psychological tactics Team Mayweather will practice.

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Mayweather and Canelo to fight at 152lbs. catchweight

By Matthew Banegas

Despite Golden Boy CEO, Richard Schaefer, acknowledging the difficult challenge of finalizing the deal, it appears as though boxing fans will get their wish for a Mayweather versus Alvarez fight on September 14th at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.

And the fight was contracted for a 152 lbs. max catchweight.

Agreeing on the exact weight for the bout was a big issue, as reported by Dan Rafael of ESPN. When asked about the catchweight, Alvarez told Rafael “It’s 152, and that is fine.” Alvarez also commented that each side had to give a little to make the deal happen, which is why he accepted Mayweather’s request for the catchweight.

But the 152 lbs. restriction only affects the fighters’ maximum allowed weight by the time of the official Friday afternoon weigh-in. Leonard Ellerbe, chief executive of Mayweather Promotions, said there would not be any other weight restrictions or weight checks. Meaning the fighters can pack on weight after the official weigh-in.

For Mayweather, this has no real impact, since the most he has ever weighed for a fight was 151 lbs. when he fought Miguel Cotto in 2012. Plus, he is well known for staying very close to that 150 lb. mark, even by fight time. Alvarez, on the other hand, is thought to have weighed as much as 170 lbs. on fight night, which could be a concern for Mayweather.

With Alvarez coming off a career-best win against Austin Trout, and Mayweather just weeks past his defeat of Robert Guerrero, this fight promises to be the biggest fight of year, on one of the most popular and historic weekends for boxing, Mexican Independence Day weekend.

News of this fight is like music to ears of boxing fans, proving that every now and then the fans get to see the fight they so desire.