Atlas questions Pacquiao’s heart and determination in Mayweather fight
By Chris Williams: Manny Pacquiao and his promoter Bob Arum revealed that Pacquiao was suffering from a right shoulder problem after his loss to Floyd Mayweather Jr. That injury supposedly was tied in to why Pacquiao came up short against Mayweather in losing a 12 round unanimous decision last Saturday night at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada.
One person who has doubts on validity of Pacquiao’s injured shoulder playing a part in his defeat to Mayweather is ESPN commentator Teddy Atlas, who feels that Pacquiao didn’t show any sign of having a bad shoulder injury during the fight. Atlas says that even if Pacquiao did have a problem with his right shoulder, it shouldn’t have prevented him from walking forward and looking to throw his left hand all night long.
Atlas didn’t see that from Pacquiao. What he saw was Pacquiao getting hit with right hand counters from Mayweather and then looking tentative to come forward to try and unload on Mayweather at any costs.
“In the 4th round when Pacquiao hurt, when he dinged Mayweather and he thought he had Mayweather hurt and Mayweather went back, he [Pacquiao] opened up a lot of punches, a lot of right hooks,” Atlas said on ESPN’s Friday Night Fights. “I never saw once him pull back from one of those punches in any kind of agony. I never saw him wince. I never saw any hint that it was hurting him. Nowhere in there was the verse that the shoulder bone is connected to the leg bone or the head bone or the heart bone. I said all week long if Pacquiao stayed on the outside, he wasn’t winning. He had to get inside. The shoulder being what it might have been, let’s give him that, did it stop his legs from moving forward? No. When he was getting hit with those right hand counters from Mayweather, which we knew were coming all night, he was going to have to find a way to get through it. He [Pacquiao] got tentative, he didn’t go forward. Again, the shoulder bone is not connected to the leg bone or the head bone. He could have taken those legs and gone forward. That’s where he needed to go. That shoulder did not stop him from doing that. That shoulder did not stop him from having the type of fighter’s mentality, the urgency to get inside at any cost and land his left hand that wasn’t hurting. That’s my problem,” Atlas said.
I have to agree with Atlas about Pacquiao not showing a fighter’s mentality in the ring against Mayweather. While Pacquiao may have had an injury to his right shoulder, he should have still been able to come forward and throw his left hand all night long. We didn’t see that. Much of the time Pacquiao was fighting cautiously like he didn’t want to get hit by Mayweather. It was the opposite type of performance from what we’d seen from Mayweather’s last opponent Marcos Maidana in his two fights against Mayweather. Maidana was willing to keep coming forward no matter what Mayweather hit him with. Maidana never backed off even for an instant. He was willing to take whatever Mayweather threw in order to get his own shots off. Pacquiao failed to show the same kind of courage that Maidana did, and that’s kind of troubling because he’s seen as a much better fighter than the Argentinian.