Mayweather-Pacquiao: A quick guide to each fighter’s punches
The fight that everybody has been waiting to witness since 2010 is finally happening—the Battle for Greatness: Mayweather versus Pacquiao is mere days away.
For avid boxing fans, excitement is at an all-time high as two of this generation’s best fighters go mano-a-mano.
Almost every boxing expert and analyst — even David Hasslehoff — has a prediction for this fight. Some have based their picks on the technical wizardry of Mayweather, others have been swayed by the relentlessness and heart of Pacquiao.
But for those who are not huge followers of boxing or those that are simply watching because it’s our own Manny Pacquiao and it’s the fight of the century, the boxing terms and strategies can get a bit confusing. What’s that straight left from Pacquiao that everyone is raving about? What does a check hook even look like?
To help make things easier for the casual boxing viewer this weekend, here’s a short and quick guide (with videos from TheFightCity.com’s Lee Wylie) to break down the different boxing strategies that we expect from Mayweather and Pacquiao come fight night.
By now, most people know Floyd Mayweather Jr. as a defensive genius. He’s a master of avoiding his opponents’ big shots. But apart from Mayweather’s brilliant defense, he also possesses a dangerous arsenal of offensive tools that Pacquiao must watch out for.
Check left hook
One of the punches Mayweather throws to counter the jab of a southpaw opponent like Pacquiao is his so called “Check” left hook. Pacquiao must be cautious of this because it’s the perfect weapon for an attacking opponent who’s moving forward, something Manny loves to do.
Another potent weapon Mayweather has is his jab. With his left hand just slightly above his waist, his jab is out of his opponent’s field of vision, making it an attack that’s difficult to read. He primarily targets the midsection of his opponent with his jab in a ploy to tire them out as the fight stretches on. This also forces the opponent to lower their hands and create openings for him to release his right hand.
Speaking of Mayweather’s right hand, he uses it to unleash his most effective blow: his straight right. It’s all about distance and timing, and over the years, Mayweather is simply the best at this. It’s a quick attack but also an accurate one. Against a southpaw in this fight, Mayweather will probably use this to land some shots on Pacquiao.
As mentioned before, Manny Pacquiao is a southpaw, which means that his strong hand is his left hand. His most lethal attacks usually come from his left hand.
One of the techniques that Pac-Man has mastered over the years is his straight left attack. He uses this technique to counter his opponent’s jab. It’s effective, as Pacquiao’s side-to-side and head movements bait an opponent to throw a punch, opening them into a counter straight left from Manny. It’s a beautiful technique, in which Manny exits to the side after landing his punch, giving him a new angle to work with. This puts him one step ahead of his opponent.
The most dangerous weapon in his arsenal is his overhand left. This technique is difficult to anticipate because it’s outside his opponent’s line of vision. Just like his straight left, he also uses this overhand left to counter his opponent’s attacks. Manny usually starts this attack with a jab followed by the overhand left. Just how dangerous is it? It basically ended Ricky Hatton’s career.
Early in his career, Pacquiao was a one-dimensional fighter who relied on his left hand. However, after years of training with Freddie Roach, Pacquiao slowly but steadily developed his right hand, particularly his right hook. Quite similar to Floyd’s “Check” left hook, it is used to counter an opponent’s jabs. For fighters who overcompensate when trying to avoid Pacquiao’s powerful left hand, Manny unleashes this right hook to catch them.