The odds don’t look too good for Manny Pacquiao in May’s superfight with Floyd Mayweather. But we’ll give you five good reasons why Pac-Man might bring more betting value for your boxing picks.
All the fine print has been read and agreed to, so we can finally look forward to the fight everyone’s been waiting for: Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao will touch gloves this May 2 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. It would have been better five years ago when both men were undoubtedly in their primes, but it’s not too late for the two most popular fighters in the world to get it on – even if the boxing odds have Pacquiao in the neighborhood of +250.
This could easily end up being the biggest one-day sporting event the books have ever seen. Early bettors have been willing to put down a few dollars here and there on Pacquiao, but the big money should come in much later on Mayweather, with single bets of seven-figures expected on the favorite. We’ll get you warmed up by giving you five reasons why the underdog may be the better boxing pick in this instance.
1. Betting Value
Before we even get into discussing the relative merits of the two fighters, we have to look at those boxing odds. Less than four years ago, Mayweather was a –150 favorite for this projected fight; now he checks in at around –300. Those odds could climb even higher by the time May rolls around, if all that cold, hard cash comes in on “Money” Mayweather. While Pacquiao has taken more abuse than Mayweather over the years, has the gap between the two men really grown that large?
Mayweather has avoided taking a pounding in the squared circle by employing a smart defensive strategy. He’s not devoid of power, but Pacquiao has a clear advantage in this regard. BoxStat has Pac-Man at 72 percent knockout power, delivering knockouts in 9.34 percent of his rounds fought. Mayweather checks in at 68.1 percent power with knockouts in 7.16 percent of his rounds.
This would have been unthinkable not too long ago, but now that Mayweather is turning 38, his staying power is decreasing more quickly than Pacquiao’s at the tender age of 36. We saw Mayweather have his issues going the distance in his last two fights against Marcos Rene Maidana, and even before that against Saul Alvarez. Pacquiao’s conditioning remains beyond reproach even at this stage of his career.
4. Unorthodox Stance
As a southpaw, Pacquiao brings and added element of confusion into the ring for most opponents. But it isn’t just his left-handedness that can make things awkward; Pacquiao also attacks from a wide variety of angles and uses unexpected combos, a style that has much in common with none other than Bruce Lee. Pacquiao will throw his left hand even if his feet aren’t set. He’ll throw a second left hand after landing with the first. He’ll throw an incredibly quick jab after blocking his opponent. Mayweather hasn’t had much experience dealing with this kind of attack – very few people have.
5. Fighting Spirit
Mayweather is no slouch when it comes to the mental game, but it’s fair to question whether he can muster up as much passion as his opponent. Both fighters have expanded their interests far beyond the boxing canvas; however, Mayweather is in greater danger of losing his focus. He spent two months in prison in 2012 for domestic abuse, not the first time he’s run afoul of the law. Legal troubles aside, Mayweather’s lifestyle is in sharp contrast to Pacquiao’s. While Pac-Man is emulating Bruce Lee in the ring, Mayweather is busy posing with Justin Bieber on instagram. That should be enough to make you think twice about adding Mayweather to your boxing picks, no matter what lifestyle choices you prefer.