Hatton-Mayweather: Fighting on The Back Foot
By David Lahr: At the recent press conference in Manchester with Ricky Hatton (43-0, 31 KOs) and Floyd Mayweather Jr. (38-0, 24 KOs), Hatton commented that Mayweather “fights like a woman” and “fights on the back foot,” meaning that Mayweather tends to fight in a mostly a safety first defensive posture to avoid taking shots from his opponents. However, what Hatton fails to realize in saying this, though, is that all of the former great boxers of the past, for example, Sugar Ray Robinson, Muhammed Ali, Ezzard Charles and Jack Johnson, as well as boxing stars of the present, like Roy Jones Jr., and Chris Byrd, use the same style of fighting with most of their weight on their back foot.
There’s no shame in having a sound defense, as the nature of boxing is to hit and avoid being hit in return. Somehow, Hatton has got it mixed up in his head about fighting, perhaps thinking it’s a test of manhood to take unecessary shots to the head in order to gain the respond of the fans. Who knows? That may be a requirement in England, but if it is, it’s something that they need to get away from because the boxer is the one that has to live with the results of being punches continuously in the head, not the fans.
Mayweather is just being smart in his fights, making his crude opponents miss over and over with their wild punches as they attempt to land shots. Mayweather just has an uncanny ability to move his shoulders and head just before the punch arrives, making it fly harmlessly out of range. Against opponents like Carlos Baldomir, Arturo Gatti and Oscar De La Hoya, Mayweather frustrated them all night, while dodging their wild swings round after round. In the end, each of there were soundly beaten, not only physically but also mentally, because they had given up on themselves when they realized how difficult it is to try and land a punch on Mayweather.
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