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Hurricane Floyd Is Tearing Through Boxing
By Tom Gray (May 15, 2004) 
Floyd Mayweather, JR.
Floyd Mayweather, JR. is one of the most talented fighters in boxing, who seems to have no limit to his potential. He only achieved an Olympic Bronze Medal in the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, but has turned that in to gold as a professional. The undefeated double world champion currently heads my pound for pound list and will continue to do so unless Roy Jones, JR. wins big against Tarver after this weekend.

He started out at 130lbs and mixed a beautiful blend of boxing skills with amazing reflexes and hand eye coordination. When the time came for a title shot, it was against the vastly more experienced, Genaro Hernandez. Floyd dominated from the start, winning at least seven of the eight rounds, before the fight was halted. He was crowned the WBC Super Featherweight Champion at twenty one years of age.

Anyone would have thought that Mayweather would take it easy after posting such a fabulous victory, but he elected to go after the highly touted Angel Manfredy, who had recently beaten Arturo Gatti. The challenger was outclassed from the start as Floyd pulled the trigger on a perfect right hand counter, in the first twenty seconds of the bout. Things never got any better in the second round, when another right hand rocked Angel to his heels. Mayweather followed up with a flurry and the fight was stopped due to the fact that the challenger wasn’t firing back. It was a great performance, which justified his standing as “Fighter of the Year” for 1998.

He continued to smash through the super featherweight division making nine successful defenses. His most famous victory was against Diego Corrales in what was thought to be his biggest test to date. Floyd won every round, scored five knockdowns and left poor “Chico” in tears. It was a terrific solo effort and his use of the lead left hook was simply unbelievable. Anyone who wasn’t a believer had to be after this fight!

When Mayweather moved up to the lightweight division in April of 2002, he immediately hit a brick wall. The holder of the WBC title was Jose Luis Castillo, who would test “Pretty Boy” to the limit. In many ways Castillo drew up the blue print on how to fight Floyd. The Mexican applied constant pressure throughout and I have to admit that I thought the fight could have gone either way. However the decision went to Mayweather and an immediate rematch confirmed his superiority, as he posted a much easier win.

He has since regained his old form and his last fight was arguably a career best performance against Phillip N’dou. His defense was outstanding that night and the knockout, which consisted of three consecutive right hand shots, was awe inspiring.

His personal life has been a little rocky, as has his relationship with his father over the years. Bob Arum is apparently relishing a possible match up between Floyd and Oscar De La Hoya, so that he can sell the family angle with Oscar being trained by Floyd Sr. There isn’t a hope in hell of that fight being made, so the young Mayweather will attempt to make a mark at 140lbs, which is arguably the hottest division in boxing at the moment. He takes on Demarcus Corley on the May 22 in Atlantic City, New Jersey which is an eliminator for the WBC title.

I think Floyd can go as far as welterweight, but that is a long way down the line. He should hang around at 140lbs, where there are a lot of career defining fights to go for and I think we’ll see the best of him. The list of match ups is endless; Kostya Tszyu, Sharmba Mitchell, Vivian Harris, Miguel Cotto, Francisco Bojado or Ricky Hatton to name just a few.

Floyd continues to dazzle and I don’t think anyone at junior welterweight relishes a battle with this superb technician. Time will tell if he can reach even bigger heights.
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