Lee Groves

10: Floyd Mayweather’s greatest fights

9. May 1, 2010 – W 12 Shane Mosley, MGM Grand, Las Vegas

 

The difficulty of Mayweather’s task against Marquez was mirrored by Mosley against Mayweather, if only by the amount of ring rust encountered. The 38-year-old Mosley was 15½ months removed from one of the greatest victories of his career, a nine-round thrashing of the heavily-favored Antonio Margarito. In that fight, Mosley looked like the “Sugar Shane” of old and not an old Shane Mosley, for he barreled into the eye of the “Tijuana Tornado” and ripped it to shreds. Margarito, already distracted by the discovery of tainted hand wraps shortly before entering the ring, was utterly destroyed. 

The memories of that Mosley convinced some that Mayweather was finally stepping up to a challenge after years of cherry-picking accusations by his legion of critics. Those feelings were confirmed in round two when Mosley landed a pair of jolting rights, one of which buckled Mayweather and had him clutching for dear life. Propelled into a crisis situation for the first time in years, Mayweather remained calm and neutralized Mosley for the remainder of the round.

From round three onward, Mayweather belted Mosley at will and “Sugar Shane” could do nothing to turn the tide. Fulfilling a pre-fight promise to engage Mosley on the challenger’s terms, Mayweather fought more aggressively than had been the case in recent fights and still won going away. By the midway point the only question was whether Mayweather could become the first to stop Mosley. The fact that he didn’t shouldn’t take away from the scope of his triumph.

The CompuBox stats reflected Mayweather’s dominance, for he out-landed Mosley 208-92 overall, 85-46 in jabs and 123-46 in power shots. He landed 44 percent of his punches while keeping Mosley to 20 percent and forcing him to think twice before pulling the trigger. To do that against a warrior as willing as Mosley is quite the accomplishment.

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