It is official, inked, signed, and sealed. Eight-division champion Manny Pacquiao and three-division titlist Shane Mosley will fight on May 7th, 2011.
But as far as the pulse of the boxing world goes, Pacquiao-Mosley is a fight almost nobody wants. And for a lot of reasons. Pacquiao has proven to be the world's best active boxer at this point and he needs an opposition that can seriously challenge his dominance in the ring. And the only fighter in the world who fits the bill is Floyd Mayweather, Jr. But with Mayweather's legal dramas and his supposed unwillingness to face Pacquiao because of steroid allegations, Pacquiao has to settle for the next best thing.
But is Mosley the next best thing? According to professional boxing trainer Shannon States, Mosley is everything but. For one, Mosley is old (he is almost 40 years old) and his skills are on the downhill slide. Mosley's last two performances is also abysmal (a UD loss to Mayweather and an ugly draw with former light middleweight champion Sergio Mora). While his last victory was very impressive, hellishly pounding Antonio Margarito en route to a thrilling TKO victory in the 9th round, it was almost two years ago.
To summarize things, Pacquiao signed to fight an old and eroding warrior who should ought to retire, he says.
Asked for his opinion with the upcoming Pacquiao-Mosley bout, States said it is all about the money. "I can't say I love it. But I always knew it would be a Pacquiao-Mosley bout.Why? Because it makes $ents." Mosley severed ties with Golden Boy Promotions to position himself as a free agent prior to initiating talks with Bob Arum of Top Rank. Arum and Oscar dela Hoya of GBP are fierce rivals in the promotions business.
With Mayweather out of the equation, at least for the time being, States said that WBC welterweight champion Andre Berto should have gotten the nod. "After Pacquiao beat Margarito, I was really hoping Pacquiao would set a date with Andre Berto. Berto is everything Pacquiao has never faced."
Berto has amassed an impressive rack of 27 wins with no defeats. 21 of those wins are knockout victories. Aside from the obvious punching power, Berto also boasts of youth advantage, being five years younger than Pacquiao. Arum, in an interview with Ronnie Nathanielsz of Viva Sports, however, wants to see Berto nab some victories against top-tier fighters before he would consider going to the negotiations table with Berto and his team.
While most of the boxing world are ready to dismiss Mosley going in to a fight with Pacquiao, Vince Parra, former boxer and currently a trainer and vice-president for Rogue Boxing Promotions, begged to differ. "Shane Mosley is a soldier of the highest degree and he will not go easy."
"I've always been a huge Shane Mosely fan," Parra said. "In 2000, I was his chief sparring partner for his first fight with Oscar." Having worked with Mosley, this writer asked Parra what can Mosley do to secure a victory, (or at the very least, give Pacquiao a competitive fight). "I've always pulled for Shane and I still believe he could shock the world and catch Manny but it has to be early. Manny is just too sharp now at 147 and I feel like the weight may hurt Shane late. Shane hasnt looked good since the Margarito fight but he still has a big name."
States mirrored Parra's thoughts. "I think Mosley can be very competitive against Pacquiao,especially in the early rounds if he (Mosley) applies smart pressure,work behind the jab,cut off the ring by trying to trap and minimize the movment Pacquiao will be giving him," said the expert trainer. "And Mosley must go to the body," States added.
Asked for a prediction, Parra said that it would be a tough call but he will go with Pacquiao. "TKO in 10."