Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Mayweather, Sr. Reveals Hatton's Strategy

It's only their second fight together, but Floyd Mayweather, Sr. and Ricky Hatton believe they have formulated a plan of attack that will see them unseat Manny Pacquiao from his pound-for-pound throne on Saturday night at the MGM Grand.

Speaking from Las Vegas on Tuesday afternoon, Mayweather, Sr. said there are a few key areas that he and Ricky will be focusing their energy on.

It seems as though the self proclaimed “world's greatest trainer” is at peace now that all of the preparation is over with and the battle is only a few days away.

“We feel as though we know exactly what Pacquiao is going to do on Saturday night,” said a calm Mayweather. “We feel as though Ricky is stronger than Manny and we feel there are some things that Ricky will be able to do that will surprise everyone.”

Mayweather said he has spent many hours watching fight footage of Pacquiao in the past several weeks and that he has seen flaws that Hatton should be able to capitalize on.

“We are going to be smart about the fight,” Mayweather said. “Yeah, we're going to be aggressive, but here's the thing...we're going to be smart and aggressive. I've seen Manny get knocked out by body-shots, twice, so we plan on attacking the body – definitely. We want to attack the body and get Manny to bring his hands down, that's part of the plan.”

Mayweather said two flaws in particular stand out with Pacquiao. First is the fact that Pacquiao has a tendency to walk backwards in a straight line and put his back on the ropes. Secondly, Mayweather says that Pacquiao also raises his gloves up very high to protect his chin and when he does that it leaves him vulnerable to body-shots.

“What I've noticed is that Manny can't fight when he goes backwards, he has to be coming forward,” Mayweather said. “But he does go to the ropes a lot, straight back to the ropes and he doesn't move around enough, it's always straight back to the ropes.”

Mayweather is a hands-on trainer and he has spent months with Hatton while working on the finer points of the game.

Floyd's plan involves having Hatton work behind a left jab in an effort to get Manny's back against the ropes or in a corner. “He can run, but he can't hide,” said Mayweather in using an old Joe Louis phrase. “We'll get him against the ropes, go to the body, get him to drop his hands and then we'll come back upstairs.”

Mayweather claims he has seen progress in the time he has spent with Hatton and that a large part of their focus has been on trying to use the left jab more often and that it will likely play a key role in the fight.

“That punch is one of the main things that I've been working on with him,” said Mayweather. “But the bottom line is that whether he uses the jab or not, we're going to win this fight. Ricky will put the pressure on him. He's too strong and Ricky has gotten better – smarter – in the time I've had with him. I'm feelin' real good about where we're at and you know, what more can I say?”

April 2009

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