by Charles Jay
So Erik Morales figures he can beat Floyd Mayweather.
I’m sure the game plan has worked so well, over and over again in his imagination.
Photos: Hogan Photos
Then, of course, the bell sounds, and things take a dramatically different turn.
I don’t know that anyone would seriously sit down and analyze a Mayweather-Morales fight, other than to speculate that it could be a butchering to resemble that which Mayweather once administered to Arturo Gatti.
But Morales is with Golden Boy, which certainly will want to provide the opposition for Floyd’s prospective May 5 Vegas date, and Mayweather wants to make a payday.
Sometimes that’s all the magic it takes.
But who knows what could happen from here, because everyone aside from Manny Pacquiao has been discussed as a possible opponent on that date.
I’m exaggerating, of course, but we know that Canelo Alvarez would love to do it, and that Sergio Martinez is reportedly offering to go down to 150 pounds for the opportunity. Robert Guerrero wants to give it a go. Who knows if Amir Khan might be in such a mix, not to mention Devon Alexander, who for some reason unbeknownst to us is the WBC’s #1 welterweight contender.
Believe me, I respect Erik Morales an awful lot. There are not many guys who can win fights in different ways, and Morales have engaged in full-scale brawls and also played the role of the boxer. In fact, it was craftiness that paved the way for him to beat Manny Pacquiao the first time they fought.
But that was a long time ago. Morales lost four fights in a row after that, including two rematches with Pacquiao. After sitting out two and a half years, he came back with three fights against limited foes, one of which brought him the “WBC Silver light welterweight” title, which I’m not very familiar with, and don’t really care to be.
The fight with Marcos Maidana was a credible result, as Morales actually earned a draw on one of the scorecards, but the general consensus among real fight people is that it was more of a reflection on Maidana.
After the WBC gifted Golden Boy by stripping Timothy Bradley, who didn’t want the money offer to fight Amir Khan, Morales was himself gifted (1) with a shot at the 140-pound title Bradley vacated, and (2) with an opponent devoid of credentials (Pablo Cesar Cano), who was brought in on about ten minutes’ notice. and it was all Morales could do to escape with a TKO victory as things just got too bloody for the 21-year-old Cano.
This would be a gift from both Golden Boy and the WBC to Morales, who has fought at a full 147 pounds only once – after his long layoff.
No one would, should or could deny the kind of heart Morales takes into the ring with him. But this is one time when that would not be nearly enough. He’d be so outclassed here that I don’t know that it could even be sold to the non-Mexican boxing audience.
I know that Mayweather has been considering him for the May 5 date, but I don’t suspect he is at the head of the queue. Only if the other possibilities exhaust themselves would I expect that any serious steps forward would be taken, because as Floyd has absorbed his share of abuse for engaging with rather non-competitive opponents, this prospective matchup would fuel such criticism.
After all, I’m not sure that turning Cinco de Mayo into “Stinko de Mayo” is such a great marketing ploy.