Floyd Mayweather Jr vs. Ricky Hatton
This is what a superfight is supposed to be like. The atmosphere created inside the MGM Grand by the thousands of Hatton fans was incredible. They chanted for Hatton during the undercard bouts. They got even louder when the 5’6″ British star made his way to the ring. They sang along with Tom Jones. And then they booed the Star-Spangled Banner. That was actually a little but too far. Mayweather came out to “Born in the USA.” It was a nice touch but not as awesome as when Matt Hamill did it in London against Michael Bisping.
Hatton came out looking to push the pace. The fight was ugly throughout the first four rounds. Mayweather was just as guilty as Hatton for the wrestling match that ensued. Hatton needed to get inside on Mayweather but that was indeed a difficult task given Mayweather’s speed, skill, intelligence, and 7-inch reach advantage. Hatton was working on pure heart. While he poured his entire heart into this fight, Ricky Hatton just couldn’t overcome the boxing ability of Floyd Mayweather Jr. It was Floyd’s best performance to date as he dominated Hatton over ten rounds. Mayweather even out-brawled Hatton as he would hit Hatton and then immediately grapple with him before Hatton could get any solid shots off. Mayweather prevented Hatton from getting into any kind of a rhythm.
Referee Joe Cortez took a point away from Hatton in the sixth round for hitting Mayweather behind the head. It was a definite sign of frustration from Hatton as Mayweather set up the Hitman perfectly for it. Hatton got a little more desperate after the point deduction and that would leave to his downfall. It’s not wise to take a style that already has a lot of openings in it and become even more aggressive against a technician such as Floyd Mayweather Jr. Floyd battered Hatton in rounds eight and nine and put the finishing touches on the game challenger in the tenth. Mayweather knocked Hatton into the ringpost with a left hook. Hatton got to his feet at nine but didn’t have solid legs beneath him. Mayweather sent him to the canvas again and Joe Cortez stopped the fight at the same time that Hatton’s corner was throwing in the towel.
As usual, Mayweather sought adulation after the fight by saying he wasn’t going to fight for a while. Should Floyd decide to fight again, his toughest fight would come against Miguel Cotto, provided Cotto survives a likely showdown with Oscar De La Hoya. Hatton, on the other hand, stated he will be back to fight again. That should please his legions of fans that continued to cheer Hatton long after he suffered his first professional loss.
Jeff Lacy vs. Peter Manfredo Jr
So much for an intriguing affair. Lacy defeated Manfredo by unanimous decision in a mostly uneventful fight. The only real piece of action came in the fourth round when Manfredo was dropped by a right hand. Lacy went in for the kill but Manfredo did a good job of surviving. It seemed like this fight was hanging there for either man to take but neither showed the true desire to win. Since the judges had to award the fight to someone, they gave it to Lacy with scores of 95-94, 96-93, and 97-92.
Daniel Ponce De Leon vs. Eduardo Escobedo
Ponce De Leon was surprisingly unable to knockdown Eduardo Escobedo. De Leon did get a unanimous decision in retaining his WBO Super Bantamweight Title. The knockout wasn’t lost for a lack of effort. Ponce De Leon attacked and fought an aggressive style as usual, but Escobedo showed a good chin and an excellent defensive boxing acumen. The final scores were 115-113, 117-111, and 118-110 all in favor of Ponce De Leon.
Edner Cherry vs. Wes Ferguson
This was a rematch of a unanimous decision won by Edner Cherry in June. It didn’t make it to the scorecards this time around as Edner Cherry disposed of Ferguson in the sixth round. Cherry knocked Ferguson down twice in the round with the second of the two ending the fight. Ferguson landed awkwardly on the final knockdown and the referee didn’t even bother with a count.