Floyd Mayweather's Biggest Keys to Defeating Robert Guerrero

Mike HoagCorrespondent IIApril 24, 2013

May 5, 2012; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. reacts after the end of the eighth round against Miguel Cotto at MGM Grand Garden Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports
Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

Forty-three opponents have tried and failed when pitted against Floyd Mayweather in the squared circle.

On May 4, 30-year-old Robert Guerrero will become the latest fighter to be on the unfortunate opposing end of Mayweather’s gloves.

Don’t expect Guerrero to go down without a fight, though.

“The Ghost” has lost just one fight throughout his career—a split decision to Gamaliel Diaz in 2005. He also fought Julian Rodriguez to a draw in 2004.

Guerrero is a talented southpaw who is confident heading into the biggest fight of his career. He gained momentum prior to receiving his shot after an utter dismantling of Andre Berto in November 2012.

The loss—Berto’s second professional slip-up—came after a punishing evening that started with knockdowns in the first two rounds by Guerrero. Despite dominating the fight, Guerrero was unable to land a knockout blow that would have ended things much sooner.

If Guerrero, who has 18 TKOs in 33 professional fights, is going to beat Money then he’s going to have to put him to the mat. It’s hard to imagine that happening given Mayweather’s sound technical skill and ability to dissect opponents’ strategies.

Let’s take a look at a couple of things Mayweather will need to do in order to avoid an unanticipated letdown on May 4.


Set the Tone

Mayweather is near the top of his game physically despite being 36 years old. Still, he needs to fight at his pace and control the tempo as only he can.

He may be flashy outside of the ring, but inside it he’s a tactician who picks and prods and uses his strategy and solid fundamentals to gain the upper hand.

Expect Mayweather to try to use everything in his arsenal to stifle his opponent by dictating the pace and tone of the fight.


Avoid the Early Barrage

Like any challenger fighting in the biggest bout of their lives, Guerrero is going to be emotional from the get-go. He will throw an onslaught at Mayweather while hoping to pick up some early points or perhaps score an upset TKO against his seasoned and dominant opponent.

Surviving that initial surge will put Money in a good position to break Guerrero’s spirit and ease him into his game plan.


Go the Distance

Money doesn’t have to knockout anyone in order to continue to be one of the greatest champions in the current boxing landscape. It might be more exciting, but ultimately it isn’t something he needs to do in order maintain his unblemished reputation.

Guerrero is a hard puncher who needs the knockout in this bout. Southpaw’s have given Mayweather problems in the past, making that combination dangerous for the champ.

Mayweather’s best bet is to fight safe by working his strategy while allowing the challenger to come after him. He needs to force his opponent to get desperate, to think too much, and to be too aggressive.

After all, that’s what Money does best.