People like to get on Mayweather about the opponents he has face, they say he has handpicked opponents over the years. That is pobably true, but that is true of almost every fighter in the world including Pacquiao (not like Rios and Aligeri were worthy challengers). With that being said Mayweather has been in the ring with world-class opponents and made 95% of them look quite average. Can he do that to Pacquiao, we will know soon enough. Here are his keys to victory.
1- Don’t change
For the fight to be exciting, Mayweather either has to forced to change his style of fighting or do it on purpose. The easier the Mayweather victories are, the more boring the fights are, but he shouldn’t care about what we want, the main goal is to win the fight. Even though Mayweather wants us to believe he decides when to mix it more in the ring, it is more likely he makes changes on the fly depending on his opponent. When the opponent is pressing the action more or Mayweather feels like he has to throw more to win rounds he will. If the opponent allows him to dictate pace, then it is pretty much a shutout. Roach and Pacquiao will to bait him into a war, but his best chance of winning is just being himself.
2- His Best Punch is something Pacquiao often gets hit with.
The straight right hand is Mayweather’s best punch and Pacquiao has been susceptible to right hands throughout his career. It is one of the punches that could stunt Pacquiao’s offense throughout the night. If Mayweather can time it right, I don’t think you will see a one punch KO like with Marquez but you will see some cumulative damage done to Pacquiao.
3- Use being the bigger man to his advantage.
I don’t think you are going to see a lot of movement in the traditional sense from Mayweather. This isn’t him fighting Canelo or even a hard charging Maidana. Pacquiao employs a lot of herky jerky movement, he isn’t really walking you down unless you are running away. I expect Mayweather to keep distance, stay in the middle of the ring and make the smaller man jump into him. I don’t expect a lot of fighting on the ropes, something that Mayweather employs against bigger opponents because he is able to essentially smother their punches. With a smaller guy and him having the bigger reach advantage he wants to create space in the middle of the ring where he can get his punches and counters off at distance.