Mayweather talks Tenshin fight: “I can do 3 rounds in my sleep”
By Allan Fox: Floyd Mayweather Jr. isn’t worried in the slightest about his combat exhibition match against the much younger 20-year-old Tenshin Nasukawa on December 31 in Japan. Mayweather says he can easily do the three round exhibition match against the Japanese fighter without even having to train hard for the fight. As far as Mayweather is concerned, Nasukawa is going to have to take punishment.
The fight is a mismatch as it is. When you’ve got a younger, smaller guy with zero experience boxing taking on former six division world champion Mayweather in an exhibition match, it suggests that this fight is going to be horrible mismatch.
Unless Mayweather carries Nasukawa like he appeared to do with his last opponent UFC champion Conor McGregor last year, this little three round fight will end quickly. As soon as Mayweather wants it to end, it will. Mayweather might have mercy on Nasukawa due to the fight taking place in his home country of Japan, and he might not want to upset the fans at him fighting another over-matched guy with no boxing experience.
“I’m pretty sure he’s taking the fight extremely serious, and I know he’s probably working hard in the gym,” Mayweather said about Tenshin. “It’s just another day. I don’t even have to work hard in the gym for three rounds. I can basically do three rounds in my sleep, so I don’t worry about that. Six ounce or eight ounce, it doesn’t matter,” Mayweather said about the gloves. “If my hands can go in a six ounce gloves, then so be it. Let’s make it happen.”
Mayweather probably doesn’t realize this, but it’s not a good idea for him to be bragging about how he didn’t work hard in the gym to get ready for his fight against Tenshin. It sounds bad enough when a highly decorated former professional boxer takes on an MMA fighter with no experience in boxing. Mayweather bragging about how he didn’t have to train hard for the fight just makes him look worse for having picked out an MMA fighter in the first place to fight instead of a professional boxer like Gennady Golovkin, Saul Canelo Alvarez, Errol Spence, Danny Garcia, Keith Thurman, Shawn Porter, Regis Prograis, Terence Crawford or Amir Khan. Those are the guys that Mayweather should be fighting, not an unknown kick boxer from Japan.
“We’ll just see what he brings to the table, but as far as me getting knocked out or getting knocked down, I don’t worry about it at all,” Mayweather said at his news conference on Saturday to discuss his fight against Tenshin Nasukawa on December 31. “If it does happen, it’s entertainment. It’s what we need.”
Due to the 5’5″ Tenshin’s small size, he’s going to be at the mercy of the larger 5’8′ Mayweather. It’s a size mismatch. Mayweather just beat a much larger opponent in Conor McGregor last year in August 2017 in a boxing match on SHOWTIME PPV in Las Vegas, Nevada. McGregor was larger than Mayweather, but he lacked the skills and talent to use his size. Tenishin is small, and he doesn’t have the skills either to give Mayweather problems.
“Youth is on his side. He is very young,” Mayweather said about the 20-year-old Tenshin. “He is very active. He is very tough. I got a chance to see some highlights. I never got a chance to pull him up, as far as on the computer, but I got a chance to see some highlights. I was impressed with Tenshin. I was very impressed with him. So I’m pretty sure he doesn’t have to worry about anything,” Mayweather said.
It sounds an awful lot like Mayweather is trying to build up his opponent Tenshin for some reason. Anytime you see a fighter sounding like the promoter for his opponent, it tells you that they realize the fight is a sick mismatch, and they’re trying their hardest to make the boxing public believe that the fight is a 50-50 affair so that they’ll want to watch it. Mayweather is fighting a losing battle as far as trying to convince boxing and MMA fans that the tiny Tenshin has a chance against him. He doesn’t.
If Mayweather would actually face someone that has a chance of beating him like Gennady Golovkin, Canelo Alvarez or Errol Spence, then he wouldn’t need to become his opponents de facto promoter by building him up so much to try and sell his fight to the boxing fans. If Mayweather would have agreed to fight Tenshin in a kick boxing fight or an MMA contest, then it would be a fight where he wouldn’t have to bend over backwards to tell the fans what a great chance he has. Mayweather would be more worried about trying to gain an edge, any kind of edge, over his opponent by getting into his head by trash talking him.
“Whether it’s sparring, exhibition or a real fight, when you dish it out, you have to be able to take it,” Mayweather said. “So I’m pretty sure he’s going to dish it out, but he’s also going to have to take it. Even though it’s just three rounds, I think we should give the people action,” Mayweather said about his exhibition fight with Tenshin.
Unless Tenshin is used to getting hit a lot in a fight in his kick boxing fights, he’s probably not going to handle taking a lot of pot shots from Mayweather. Luckily for Tenshin, Mayweather mostly jabs and throws single right hands to win his fights. If this was a volume puncher with power from the boxing world, Tenshin would be at great risk of getting knocked out on December 31. In three rounds, Tenshin would be worked over by any fighter in the boxing world. Mayweather is going to want to keep Tenshin around for him to go past the 1st round. There’s no reason for Mayweather to take it easy on the Japanese fighter other than not to anger his fans, and all the people from around the world that will be watching it. Destroying a hapless opponent that looks like he doesn’t belong inside the ring with you can backfire, as the fans tend to turn against fighters that hand-pick soft jobs for show case fights. The boxing public will put up with a certain amount of mismatches before they give up on the fighter and move on. Mayweather has had two mismatches in a row against Conor McGregor and Andre Berto. His fight with Tenshin will be his third mismatch in 2016. The boxing fans want to see quality opponents for Mayweather, but he’s not willing to give them what they want.