Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Oscar De La Hoya vs Floyd Mayweather

Now that “Pretty Boy” Floyd Mayweather Jr. has beaten Carlos Baldomir last Saturday, November 4, and fairly easy at that, albeit in a somewhat lackluster style, to become the new Welterweight champ, he has thrust Oscar De La Hoya back into the picture. He seems to feel that he doesn’t need Oscar in his future, but the numbers show otherwise, and he has been very vocal about his disdain for De la Hoya. But if he really wants to be considered the “Pound for pound” king, he should fight Oscar.

Oscar, on the other hand, really doesn’t need Floyd to finish off his Hall of Fame career, but it would be the icing on the cake, so to speak. They do have two common opponents, Genaro Hernandez and Arturo Gotti, whom they have both beaten , but Oscar did it first, he did it better, and he did it when they were both younger and considerably stronger, than when they fought Mayweather. Personally. I feel if Mayweather wants to secure his legacy, which is substantially less then he believes it to be, he should stay away from Oscar.

Throughout his career De La Hoya has continued to fight the best, and if he has slowed down somewhat, I think he can be forgiven, especially when you consider the overall quality of his opponents. Win, Lose or draw, Oscar has faced; Bernard Hopkins, Fernando Vargas, Felix Trinidad, Ike Quartey, Pernell Whitaker, Sugar Shane Mosley (twice), and Julio Cesar Chavez (twice). It can be argued that Chavez was past his prime when Oscar beat him, but to some degree Oscar was still a pup, when they fought in 1996. His loss to Felix Trinidad in 1999, and in the second Shane Mosley fight, proved that Oscar was not a judge favorite. In other words, the fights Oscar won, he won on merit, he earned them, including the Whitaker fight .

Mayweather, for his part, has taken a very different route, more akin to Roy Jone‘s approach, taking as little risk as possible, despite his obvious skill. Arguably, the two best fighters that Floyd has faced, thus far, in his career, were Diego Corrales, whom he stopped, to his credit, in ten rounds in 2001., and two wins over tough Jose Louis Castillo, the first one a very controversial win. He did show championship quality and heart by giving Castillo a rematch and beating him, again, to his credit.

Mayweather is the younger and faster of the two, though Oscar is no slouch in the speed department, but Oscar does hit considerably harder. Floyd Mayweather has never faced a fighter of Oscar’s caliber, this is clear, and Oscar has just faced so many better fighters in his career. I think a focused, in shape, Oscar De La Hoya, can not only beat Floyd Mayweather, he can knock him out. The only weak link in all of this of course, is Floyd Mayweather Sr., Floyd Jr.’s father, and Oscar’s trainer, and I have no idea how that will play out, but this is a fight that can happen, and I hope it does. I hope they can put aside their personal dislike for each other and give the fans a fight they really want to see. But I have news for Mayweather, if he truly believes he’s in the drivers seat, regarding negotiations, he’s truly kidding himself!

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