“The One” Roundtable – Inside Fights Staff Predict Who’ll Win: Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Saul “Canelo” Alvarez

The biggest combat sports event of the year is happening this Saturday. That can’t be argued; no MMA, boxing or kickboxing event will come close to the sheer star power (and $20mm gate) that Mayweather vs. Alvarez is going to have. This is the event of the year and we’ll have full coverage here at Inside Fights, including round by round coverage. Until Saturday night all we can do is watch the weigh-in and argue amongst ourselves who will win in boxing’s biggest moment since Mayweather/De La Hoya.

Joining me are:

Mike Gallagher, Inside Fights Boxing Writer
Shawn W Smith, Special Contributor
Adam Keyes, Staff Writer

Sawitz: My instincts tell me it’s going to be a Floyd route, starting at about the 3rd and ending in the 11th. Everything I know about boxing tells me Floyd is going to dismantle Canelo in humiliating fashion, making him hit air and put on a boxing clinic until Floyd inevitably uses the final round to jog away.

But I can’t shake the tremendous marketing that Canelo may be “The One” to end the legacy.

My guess is Mayweather outclasses Alvarez, winning a fairly definitive decision, but part of me (for some insane reason) thinks the Ginger-headed Mexican might be able to shock the world somehow. Him winning four rounds or more would be an upset in my book and I wouldn’t be shocked if this is way closer on the cards than it is in the ring.

Gallagher: Floyd Mayweather will win a unanimous decision over Saul “Canelo” Alvarez on Saturday night. The bottom line is that Mayweather has too much experience and defensive skill to allow Canelo to do the things he needs to do to win the fight. Mayweather, back under the tutelage of his defensive minded father, will use his legs to avoid body shots when necessary and will counterpunch when Canelo’s aggressiveness allows for it. That will allow Mayweather to build an early lead and frustrate Canelo who will take more chances. Taking chances against Mayweather allows the man known as “Money” to land even more counter punches and will tire Canelo out, especially if the rumors about a tortured weight cut are true. In the end, Mayweather will win 8-10 rounds, never take any real chances or go for the knock out, and win a unanimous decision.

Smith: Floyd Mayweather is the best fighter in the world and Canelo Alvarez has done little to make me believe he can knock “Money” off his throne.

Mayweather’s experience, defensive skills and intelligence should be enough to avoid the heavy hands of Alvarez. He has shown an ability to land pecking shots and avoid staying in range against heavy handed opponents, a strategy I suspect we could see Saturday night. He’ll be aware of the power Alvarez has and will simply outwork Alvarez, who showed signs of tiring late in his last bout against Austin Trout.
Alvarez must hope that Mayweather’s age will finally begin to show, but that seems unlikely. Could he catch Mayweather and put him out? Sure, every fighter has a chance. But if history has shown us anything, it’s that Mayweather is able to avoid the big punch and work his game even if it’s boring. I’ll take Mayweather is a dominant but fairly bland unanimous decision.

Keyes: For me, pressure and all that it entails could well be key in this fight, particularly for Alvarez. Physically, will Canelo be able to impose his aggressive style and back Floyd up with those punches laden with ill-intentions; and mentally, will Alvarez be at all affected by the hype and lengthy build-up that this fight has experienced and freeze on the grandest of scales? Ultimately this one will boil down to a world class defence teamed with unrivalled timing and blurring hand speed up against bruising power, youthful exuberance and red hair.

While I would be keen to see Mayweather suffer his first legitimate knockdown in order to see him really tested and pushed to the brink so we can observe how Mayweather would react in such a situation, and with the punching power that Alvarez possesses that is not too farfetched, unfortunately this isn’t a scenario that will likely play out. Floyd will once again prove too slick for his opponent in the exchanges and with his famed defence, Mayweather will make Alvarez miss far too many times for the judges to favour Canelo in this ‘One’.

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