During the last three months of 1998, Floyd Mayweather Jr., a 1996 U.S.
Olympic bronze medallist not only established himself as the best 130-pound
fighter on the planet, but also one of the premier pound-for-pound boxers as
well. With a thoroughly one-sided TKO victory over Genaro Hernandez to win
the WBC title in October of that year, Mayweather followed that triumphant
masterpiece with an early blowout of the revered Angel Manfredy two months
later. Surging from these two career-defining fights, it appeared that if
there was anything out there that could stop one of boxing's brightest
superstars it would be Floyd himself. This Saturday night at the MGM Grand,
"Pretty Boy" Floyd will not only be opposed by his expected ringrust, but
also the most formidable opponent of his career in Diego "Chico" Corrales.
Corrales, the new explosive thin man from Sacramento whom until recently
held the IBF jr. lightweight title will be engaging in his 6th title fight
in a 15 month span. At 6' tall, Corrales more than stands a chance to defeat
Mayweather. It is his vaunted physical and peaking abilities that pundits
have considered as being enough to dethrone Mayweather in this year's first
superfight. It's the boxer vs. the puncher: the Willy Pep vs. Sandy Sadler
of the 21st century. What also makes this mega match-up salivating for
fight fans is the fact that that neither guy likes the other. To get an
idea of which fighter boxing insiders like; the CBZ has polled some of
boxing's most proficient analytical guru's.
"I know that I'm in the minority here, but I like Floyd Mayweather by
decision. I know that Diego is a rough guy, but I feel that Floyd's
handspeed is going to be a HUGE factor in the bout. Corrales MUST bring the
fight to him and put some hurt on him early to win. But while Diego is
moving in, he'll be greeted with very fast jabs & combinations that, IMO,
will keep him from getting set to throw his shots. Also, if everyone leans
to one fighter in a big showdown, the other guy usually wins (EG: Hagler -
Leonard, Morales - Barrera, etc.). That said, I wouldn't be surprised to see
Corrales win but my gut tells me Floyd by decision.
"I like Mayweather on points. He's too quick for Corrales. He'll minimize
the exchanges, take advantage of Corrales' leaky defense, and win much more
easily than most anticipate. Then again, if he gets hit cleanly ..."
CNN/SI; HBO Website
"Mayweather's mind doesn't seem to have been greatly focused on fighting -
at least not in the ring - for much of the last year or so. Corrales has had
three good wins over Derrick Gainer, Justin Juuko and Angel Manfredy since
Mayweather's unconvincing defeat of Goyo Vargas, and just about decides it
for me. A definite maybe to Corrales."
Irish Boxing Yearbook and Irishboxingnews.com
"I'd think Mayweather would be very cautious and not engage Corrales in
anything resembling a brawl, so he might do best by forcing it to be a very
boring bout. Corrales could catch him and hurt him, but I think Mayweather's
too quick and will outbox him
for a distance decision.
Quincy Patriot Ledger
"I pick Corrales to win, possibly by knockout late in the fight. I've seen
the pretty boy training in Phoenix and he's more talk than walk. They say
that Chico hasn't yet fought a Mayweather, well, I assure you Floyd has
never been in with a Corrales."
"The boxing public seems to be jumping on the Corrales wagon but I'm not
gonna be one of them. Mayweather is the more talented guy here, despite his
recent managerial chaos out of the ring. Corrales may have too much personal
anger going into this fight and it may lead to his undoing. He'll be too
power-oriented going into the fight, and I expect him to be looking to load
up on Floyd. Because of that, I see Floyd beating him to the punch all night
with superior speed and slicker movements. Corrales has never seen anyone
with the kind of speed Floyd will bring. Also, we saw that Floyd is awesome
in big fights - knockouts of Genaro Hernandez and Angel Manfredy - and the
feeling here is that he'll rise to the occasion once again. Mayweather wins
The Ring Magazine
"This fight is very difficult to call for several reasons. One, both
fighters have had their share of out of the ring distractions. Two,
Mayweather has not fought very much recently, and will likely not be as
sharp as he is capable of being. Three, Corrales has made weight before, but
is so tall that it has to be difficult to cut the pounds, which may weaken
him, somewhat. I see Mayweather letting his ego force a quick start, but
then he will wisely back off when he
sees that Corrales can take his punches. It will be a chess match the rest
of the way, with Mayweather pulling out close decision."
"The only way I can see "Pretty Boy" Floyd Mayweather losing this fight to
Diego Corrales is if Mayweather's "inactivity" has eroded his elusive
defensive skills. In his last fight against Emanuel Burton, Floyd was
touched up more than ever before in his career by his overmatched opponent.
But he still dominated the fight and stopped his opponent. When Mayweather
stopped Angel Manfredy in his first title defense, all his punching power
and defensive prowess were on display in the less-than-two-round affair. The
fair question: Does Floyd Mayweather still have those kind of skills? I say,
yes. Against, perhaps, his toughest opponent with near-equal skills in Diego
Corrales, Mayweather wins by a KO in Round 7."
M. Mark Beiro
"The oddsmakers who are calling this a pick'em fight have no balls. How can
Corrales NOT be the big favorite? I have to go with Corrales. Corrales is
what the old-timers call the dangerous beanpole. Saddler, Hearns, Arguello,
M. Spinks, are just a few dangerous beanpoles that spring to mind. When they
lose, it is to big bangers, which Mayweather is not. (The Pep victory over
Saddler is the exception that proves the rule; and remember, Pep was rough!)
Can Mayweather win? Not really; his only chance is to stink the joint out,
Pee-Wee Whitaker style, and run and pitty-pat jab all night. I don't think
he can do that, so my prediction is as follows: Corrales will beat down
Mayweather within 6 rounds. And it ain't gonna be pretty."
"Corrales by 7th round TKO."
"I predict Mayweather by unanimous or split decision in a boring
non-slugfest. Mayweather looked bad in his last fight and won't look bad in
2 bouts in a row. Similarly, Corrales has been on a knock out tear and it
has to stop sometime. Mayweather's speed and ring generalship should put on
the perfect boxing lesson in this "superfight." I think it will be a huge
let down. You heard it here first." If you doubt my powers of fortune
telling, check out my predictions at:
Mr. (Mohammed) Khan,
"Corrales by decision."
EPSN Boxing Analyst
"It's going to be the basic boxer vs. slugger fight. However, with Diego
being so big and hitting so hard, I think Mayweather is going to have to be
sure not to get lured into a slugfest. If he gets lured into that type of
fight, it could end at early. If he fights a great fight and hits and moves
and avoids being hit, like he can do so well, then he can defeat Corrales.
As for my prediction, I am going to go out on a limb and say Corrales by KO
in the later rounds. Eventually he just has to catch Floyd with one big
punch and I think he can, although it may take a while. Also, don't be
surprised to see a boring fight with Floyd running all over.
"Irish" Pat Kelley,
"Mayweather by decision."
"I'm gonna go for Mayweather on a tight points decision. Everything points
to a Corrales victory - the power, the physics, the chin, the in-fighting.
But he's simply overwhelmed all his opponents thus far, which I don't think
he'll be able to do with Mayweather. I want to see what happens when he
can't find his opponent, and is forced to think. Mayweather has the speed
(hand and feet) to get in and out, as well as a good defense and enough
accuracy with his punches to stop Corrales from getting off. Mayweather has
a massive ego, but I don't think he's stupid enough to stand in front of
Corrales. Mayweather hot-dogs and lets his ego get in the way when things
are easy. This will not be easy, and I don't believe he'll have time to hot
dog. I just think, at the end of the day, he has more options than
"This fight is as close as they come. They are without a doubt the two best
at 130lbs and are also the only two fighters who can beat each other. I
think Corrales should win the fight. He is just too big and strong for any
Junior Lightweight. Mayweather's speed will be the difference early, but as
the fight goes on Corrales will get closer and closer. Floyd will have to
stop eventually, and this will be the beginning of the end. He simply will
not be able to keep Corrales off of him. Corrales will stop him in the late
"This is an extremely tough fight to pick. I could make a very convincing
argument for Mayweather to win an easy decision or Corrales to score a
devastating knockout. With much trepidation, I have to go with Mayweather to
win a decision. Other than his own boasting, he has not really proven
himself to be as great as he wants us to think he is. As much as I would
like to see him humbled, I think he knows the importance of this fight and
Corrales lightly. Nor will he take any chances. He'll use everything in his
vast arsenal to stay out of harm's way ands outbox Corrales en route to a
decision victory. Nine times out of ten you have to go with the boxer over
the bomber. While Corrales is no slouch in the boxing department, Mayweather
will dazzle the judges with his speed and go home the victor."
"Mayweather has an ego problem, it affects who he fights and how he fights
them. Certainly his skills and speed are enough to beat Corrales by
decision, but that's the Lennox Lewis way. Unlike Lewis, Mayweather values
balls over brains and sooner or later (most likely sooner) he will feel the
need to mix it up. It is here that Corrales will do damage to help him later
and win rounds. Floyd will eventually move out to avoid a brutal KO defeat
but he will be weakened from brawling and this time he will not stay away
and he gets chopped down in the ninth."
"A war! I always go with the boxer in a match like this, so Mayweather by a
Publicist for John Ruiz & Micky Ward
"I see this as a rerun of Hearns-Cuevas or Hearns-Duran. It's all about
physics. Granted, Floyd is WAY more mobile than Cuevas or Duran but the
principal remains the same. Corrales is such a freak of nature as a jr.
lightweight. Floyd's only chance to win is to get inside like Sugar Ray did
on Hearns ... But it ain't gonna happen. Corrales, unlike Hearns, is a
motherfucker on the inside. If Floyd's stones & ego are heavier than his
brains, Corrales by KO between rounds 2-5. If Floyd decides to run, Corrales
The Ol' Spit Bucket (a.k.a. GorDoom & Stephen Gordon),
Co-Founder/ Managing Editor-in-Chief/ Quaker Pacifist
"Mayweather by decision."
"This is a contest between two of the more problematic personalities to
enter the game recently, but there's no doubt in my mind who's wearing the
white that--you have to go for the delusions-of-grandeur guy over the
probable psychopath. There are plenty of solid reasons to pick Corrales,
reasons that have been ably stated, but Corrales does get hit--Robert Garcia
nearly had him out, and Mayweather is considerably quicker than Garcia and
has some decent pop. So, since I'm not risking any money, I'm picking
TKO Corrales somewhere during the mid to late rounds. But logic aside, and
fact that Corrales says we'll understand his point of view when his case
comes to trial, here's hoping Floyd beats him like a pregnant woman."
"I think under different circumstances this would be a tough call. Normally
I always go with the smooth boxer. But inactivity hurts the boxer more than
a puncher. Plus the word is down at the Nevada Partners Gym is that Roger is
no trainer. It seems also that James Prince has surrounded Floyd with "yes"
men. Much the same way Don King did with Mike Tyson. Remember Tokyo? So,
with all that said, I think that Corrales will walk Floyd down and really
put a whuppin' on him down the stretch a win by a comfortable decision or
late round stoppage."
Rich Jones (a.k.a. Sin City Richey),
"One can build a case for either boxer to win. Mayweather's speed and
elusiveness can earn him a decision if he boxes a smart fight and doesn't
get reckless or stay in front of Corrales too long. Corrales can win if he
can land some forceful punches to "pretty boys" face and not be discouraged
by all the angles and movement. Most judges give points for aggressiveness
and punches thrown along with the basics. Whichever fighter appears to be in
charge and busier will win this bout. Based upon Mayweather's last fight
with Emanuel Burton, I would go with Corrales. He must remember to throw
enough punches each round. Knocking out Mayweather will be hard to do. Other
factors, such as, Miguel Diaz in Corrales corner and the absence of
Mayweather, Sr., in Floyd's corner can only help Corrales' game plan. So I
look for a decision win for Corrales. "
"I was hoping I could duck out of my own poll, but I'm expecting Floyd
Mayweather to pull out a close if not controversial decision. I think
Mayweather and Corrales compare very well both in style and on paper but
there is more to gain for boxing if Mayweather wins. If Corrales wins,
there is a good possibility that James Prince's prophecy will come true.
With that said, not many will care to know what happens in the aftermath.
Neither fighter has shown any real signs of weakness but the gut feeling
(which changed moments before I wrote this) here is that Mayweather will
come into this fight in phenomenal condition and have the wherewithal to
outbox Corrales in scintillating fashion that will move him back in the
neighborhood where Jones, Trinidad and Mosley preside. P.S. - Mayweather
pulls himself off the deck to do it."
Associate Editor, The CBZ
Mayweather, KO 11.
The biggest question is whether or not Mayweather can rise to the occasion
after mail-in jobs in his last two fights. He has the edge in big fight
experience, having gone through big fights vs. Genaro Hernandez and Angel
Manfredy, which leads me to believe he can deliver a brilliant performance
in a fight like this. Corrales hits hard enough that he might put Mayweather
on the canvas early. His height can also give Floyd problems, but eventually
see Mayweather's speed and skill making the difference.
"I look for Mayweather to take an early lead and for Corrales to storm back
and stop him late. And then Mayweather will start his sniveling."
Phrank Da Slugger,
"I like Mayweather by decision, feeling he will box a smart fight and not
get caught up in trading punches toe-toe, although there are times when he
may well HAVE to fight as well as box due to Diego's pressure. If Justin
Juuko could hit Corrales with lots of right hands, Mayweather figures to do
so, too. Simply, I think he can do a good job of hitting Corrales and
avoiding a lot of Diego's shots. But I believe there will be some tough
Mayweather and I think he will have to dig down deep to come through these
"I'm picking Mayweather by a close decision. I think he'll start off fast
winning the first three rounds. Corrales will come on and take the next four
rounds and possibly drop Mayweather once during that stretch. Mayweather
will then suck it up and come on strong to regain the lead and then hold off
a fired-up Corrales in the last two rounds to win a close decision."
International Boxing Research Organization & The CBZ
"I think that the key to this fight is whether or not Floyd will want to try
and outbox the hard hitting Corrales or if he stand and trade with him.
Though Floyd can out-quick most fighters in the game today, in recent
outings he has shown the willingness to stand in close with his opponents.
Corrales has shown that he maintains his power punching even in the later
rounds. I think that Mayweather might start off with a boxing game plan and
fight will turn strategy wise in Corrales' favor. The fight will probably go
twelve but I am leaning towards.... DIEGO CORRALES KO11."
Diego Corrales KO6
Mayweather has the handspeed and the boxing skills to easily outpoint
Corrales. Unfortunately for Floyd, he'll have to feed his overinflated ego
by trying to come out strong and get a piece of Corrales. When he tries,
Corrales will punish him severely. I expect a lot of contact early, with
Floyd getting the worst of it.
"Corrales by TKO9"
Totals: Mayweather 18; Corrales: 15