Floyd Mayweather Jr., left, lands a punch on Manny Pacquiao in the fourth round of the WBC Welterweight Championship at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on Saturday, May 2, 2015. Mayweather won in a unanimous decision. (Wally Skalij/Los Angeles Times/TNS)
The highly anticipated welterweight championship bout between Floyd “Money” Mayweather and Manny “Pac-Man” Pacquiao finally took place Saturday at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
However, it was not the no-holds-barred battle between two of the world’s greatest boxing champions the world had waited six long years for.
Since 2009, this fight was predicted to be one of the highest-grossing live pay-per-view events in the world, which was expected to generate over $300 million. The hype behind this long awaited match brewed over time, fueled by disputes between the two fighters’ camps regarding the terms of the fight. These terms included the venue, how earnings would be split, and the drug test. Once successful negotiations had taken place, the official announcement was made Feb. 20.
From the first bell until the final seconds of Round 12, it was a slow and steady fight, with brief spats of aggression and fury. Mayweather and Pacquiao exchanged jabs a majority of the rounds, chasing one another, like a calculated game of cat and mouse with no end goal. Although he moved Mayweather into tight spots, Pacquiao could do little against his time-tested defense.
As with his recent opponents — Marcos Maidana, Miguel Cotto, and Shane Mosley — Mayweather made good use of his defensive skills. Utilizing his shoulder roll to nullify attacks has been, and continues to be, his greatest asset. This strategy proved to be an insurmountable obstacle to Pacquiao, who needed to advance with a more sensibly aggressive approach in order just to stay in the fight.
Mayweather avoided the impact of Pacquiao’s few and seldom-landed punches, speed being one of his greatest advantages over Pacquiao. Offensively Mayweather did very little, primarily sticking to his jab. Mayweather did small damage to Pacquiao, simply beating him with points rather than with his fists.
As expected, Mayweather did what he has always done, win by being the more strategically defensive fighter. By way of unanimous decision, scoring 118-110, 116-112, 116-112 from judges, Mayweather won almost every round by a single point. This decision did not sit well with Pacquiao, who believed he had done more throughout the fight.
Fans, more than anything that night, wanted to see a knockout to decide the true victor of this “Fight of the Century.”
While fans are still waiting for that, Mayweather announced his next bout is expected to come sometime in September.