Mayweather vs. Alvarez: Canelo an underrated boxer

saul alvarez floyd mayweather jr  photoBy Sal Arteaga: Saul “Canelo” Alvarez (42-0-1, 30 KO’s) is preparing for his toughest challenge ever, to defeat the undefeated Pound-for-Pound King Floyd Mayweather Jr. (44-0, 26 KO’s). An opponent many deem unbeatable. Mayweather is a defensive mastermind who’s been able to outthink, outperform, and out-punch his competition.

His strategy is simple -avoid getting punched, while connecting as many punches as possible in the process. Many legendary fighters have entered the ring with what they believed was the perfect strategy to defeat Floyd, but they soon learn how difficult it is to execute. The reason for their difficulties is Floyd’s speed. He is evasive and quick, and he can avoid punches with great ease and return fire in rapid fashion.

His overall connection percentage versus his opponents’ rate of connection is the best in the sport. However, many don’t realize who stands at second.

Canelo is a deceptively fast fighter who manages to land effective punches, and to the surprise of many possesses a strong defense. Shane Mosley in a recent interview told EsNewsReporting, “Canelo is fast, and his speed is similar to Floyd’s.” Speed is a must to be able to compete against Mayweather.

Compubox numbers below showcase a comparison of how both fighters faired against Mosley. One must keep in mind that he fought the two within a two year time frame. Mosley was 38 years old when he fought Mayweather, and 40 against Canelo. Although, he wasn’t in his prime against either Mayweather or Canelo, he still possessed enough skill to compete at a high level.

Total Punches Jabs Power Punches
Mayweather 208 / 477 85 / 210 123 / 267
44% 40% 46%
Mosley 92 / 452 46 / 283 46 / 169
20% 16% 27%

Total Punches Jabs Power Punches
Alvarez 348 / 673 96 / 232 252 / 441
52% 41% 57%
Mosley 183 / 745 83 / 503 100 / 242
25% 17% 41%

According to Compubox Stats, Canelo’s connect percentage against the still-speedy Mosley was higher than Mayweather’s in both jabs and power punches.
Defensively, Mayweather faired better as Mosley connected on 25% of his shots against Canelo compared to 20% against Mayweather. Nevertheless, keeping a fighter like Shane, even at 40, at 25% is admirable.

Having been in the ring with both, Mosley can accurately assess the skills of both, and he has stated they are comparable in terms of speed.

Austin Trout a former Canelo opponent also has gone on record as stating he was impressed with Canelo’s speed, head movement, and footwork. He claimed, “It’s different seeing him fight, and actually being in the ring with him” (EsNewsReporting).


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