Saturday, May 07, 2011

Boxing Battle Tonight!

May 7, 2011, MGM Grand Las Vegas
CBS/Showtime Pacquiao vs Mosley Fightcamp 360°

Tonight's WBO welterwieght title fight between champion Manny "Pacman" Pacquiao and "Shugga" Shane Mosley is much anticipated for many reasons. My cousin, the boxing guru of our east coast African-American family and also barbershop boxing analyst (a reputable position in the black community) gave me a take on the fight I'd never considered.

This morning I called my cousin to get his take on the fight. Mind you my cousin, who became a Manny Pacquiao fan after seeing him destroy Oscar Delahoya, has always judged fighters based on past performance and current skillset, nothing more. Cousin predicts that Shugga Shane will knock the Pacman out either early or late in the pay-per-view aired fight tonight at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. He gave two reasons why:

1. Pacquiao splits his focus on boxing with his musical and political careers.
2. Mosley is the first African-American Pacquiao has ever faced.

My initial reaction to the boxing guru of the old 'hood' was WHAT! I'd never heard of ethnicity playing a role in analyzing the outcome of a professional boxing match. Cuz was quick to point out that the dark-skinned Joshua Clottey, who Pacman's speed rendered punchless thirteen months ago, was from Ghana and not a "real" Brotha.

So I had to think about it. Had my Cuz been blinded by loyalty to stick with a Brotha over a filipino or does his theory somehow, someway hold a shotglass of truth in it?

I found myself pondering the notion of an opponent's racial superiority or inferiority like a "tale of the tape" statistic. What I came away with we're two conclusions that unfortunately, do not paint Cuz in the best of light:

1. Cuz is looking out for his reputation in the old 'hood' and playing it safe. As the Raiders saying goes, "win lose or tie, I'm a Raider 'til I die."

2. Cuz is so convinced of the psychological damage caused by a first encounter with a Brotha opponent in the ring, that skills become a moot point in such a match.

I didn't have the heart to tell Cuz that Pacquiao's sparring partner for this fight is a Brotha from San Francisco named
Karim Mayfield, who's also sparred with Mosley. Brotha Karim believes that Pacman has the edge over Shugga.

I've concluded that Color and/or Race alone cannot determine the superior or inferior performance of a professional boxer during a match.

Sorry Cuz, but that dog just won't hunt!

Update: Pacman floors Shugga in the 3rd Rd

Shugga runs ring avoiding Pacman power

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