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Is Hatton Shell Shocked?

By Jason Kim: It happens to the best of fighters at times, particularly after they get blasted into the canvas and experience a knockout similar to the one Ricky Hatton suffered against Manny Pacquiao. Getting drilled into the canvas obviously isn’t a pleasant experience, but it helps if the fighter has a short memory and doesn’t dwell on it and think too much on it rather than looking at it objectively and trying to learn from the mistakes made.

Hatton has the hallmarks of a fighter that is dwelling on the loss and not able to let go of the experience. And that’s not good for Hatton. If he can’t make up his mind whether he wants to continue his boxing career, then he probably doesn’t have any business still fighting because a fighter has to be mentally tough enough to learn from their mistakes and not defeat themselves mentally by beating themselves up after a loss.

Pacquiao already beat Hatton senseless and it appears that Hatton is beating himself up still over the loss. Hatton can’t make up his mind almost two months after getting knocked out about whether to continue on. I’d like to think that Hatton has an idea what to do with his career by now, but he seems generally confused about what to do.

I think he’d be crazy to give up on his boxing career without continuing on a little while longer with fights against Amir Khan and Junior Witter. Those are probably the biggest fights out there for Hatton unless he wants to continue to face really tough opponents like Pacquiao or Miguel Cotto.

Hatton would be wasting his time if he were to stay at light welterweight and opt to fight Timothy Bradley or one of the other top fighters in the division, because there’s not enough big names for Hatton to continue to get the big fights that he’s been accustomed to getting.

Hatton would have to have his head together whichever opponent he decides to fight, because even the inexperienced Khan would be big problems for Hatton if he goes into the fight not all there mentally and worried about being knocked out. Hatton needs to forget all that, and just box.

Anyone would have been knocked out from the huge shot that Pacquiao landed on him in the 2nd round, and there’s nothing for Hatton to be ashamed of. Hatton is just suffering from a bad case of self doubt that’s all.

He’s probably also upset about not being the top dog anymore at light welterweight, but come on, Hatton may have been kidding himself if he ever thought he was the top guy to begin with, because he never fought all the top light welterweights in the division like Witter, Bradley, Kendall Holt or Ricardo Torres.

Hatton’s boxing fans can speculate that he was good enough to beat them, but given Hatton’s losses to Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Pacquiao, and the way that Hatton seemed to struggle against Juan Lazcano, I have my doubts that Hatton had the stuff needed to beat those guys.

He’d have a chance, but who knows if Hatton could have beaten them even when he had his head on straight. One thing is for certain, unless Hatton gets his mind right about his loss to Pacquiao, he’s going to get destroyed by his next opponent.

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