De La Hoya-Mayweather: Why You Should Care. Part I: History

May 2, 2007 – 12:01 am by Ryan Phillips

We’re going to be doing a few posts on the May 5th, Oscar De La Hoya – Floyd Mayweather Superfight to get you excited about it. We know it’s boxing, but we love boxing. Ok, let me clarify, we love good boxing. And this should be a great one.

So why should you care? Because this could be one of the best fights we’ve ever seen.

Many experts see this as the most anticipated fight since Julio Cesar Chavez and Meldrick Taylor battled on March 17, 1990. And that classic bout was not only named the top fight of 1990, but also the best of the ’90s by Ring Magazine.

For you non-boxing nerds out there, the the Taylor – Chavez fight was one of the most anticipated and most incredible fights in the long history of the sport. Chavez came in with a record of 68-0 with 56 KO’s, while Taylor was 24-0-1 with 14 KO. Chavez held the WBC Junior Welterweight champion, Taylor was the IBF’s champion.

The 28-year-old Chavez epitomized the “Mexican” style of boxing. He was a relentless fighter, who never seemed to get hurt or be phased by the punishment he took. He used body attacks to slowly wear down his opponents before focusing on knocking them out. He never tired, and had the reputation as a punishing “brawler” who was respected by the entire boxing world.

The 24-year-old Taylor was what Pierce Egan had in mind when he coined the term “the sweet science.” He was almost the exact opposite of Chavez. He had shocking hand speed and incredible natural talent. But as a Philadelphia fighter, he had shown the tendency to brawl when he should have boxed. But his natural ability and hand speed were almost impossible for opponents to handle. He was quite simply the best talent the boxing world had seen in years.

When the fight was between arguably the world’s two most exciting fighters. For a write up of what happened, go to the fight’s Wikipedia page here.

For this fight, it appears to be almost the same story. De La Hoya is 34, has a record of 38-4 with 30 KO’s and Mayweather is 30 with a record of 37-0 and 24 KO’s, he’s also regarded as the top pound-for-pound fighter in the world. De La Hoya has been a champion in six divisions (a record) to Mayweather’s four.

Of De La Hoya’s four losses, three were by controversial decisions (two to Shane Mosley and one to Felix Trinidad) and was knocked out by Bernard Hopkins when he was knocking out everyone. Anyone who saw Oscar’s return to the ring in May 2006 against Ricardo Mayorga knows how good he looks now. He appears to have more power and be in better shape than at any point in his career.

Floyd Mayweather fancies himself one of the greatest boxers of all-time, and to this point of his career, it’s hard to argue with him. He has been considered the world’s pound-for-pound best since July 18, 2005. Floyd likes to talk … a lot. But he has always backed it up, as he has dominated essentially every opponent. No opponent has come close to besting him so far. And Saturday night might be your last chance to see him fight, since he has said he plans to retire afterwards.

Mayweather’s hand speed, quickness and flash in the ring are eerily reminiscent of Meldrick Taylor’s. While De La Hoya’s chin, left hooks to the body and ring savvy remind many of Chavez. If this one ends up being 1/10th the fight that Chavez/Taylor was, we’re in for an exciting night.

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  1. 4 Responses to “De La Hoya-Mayweather: Why You Should Care. Part I: History”

  2. Boxing? Boxing? You wanna talk about boxing? Aw, c’mon! Boxing? Ugh! Who cares? I don’t watch Ultimate Fighting, either, but I think that’s where the future is.

    By Ed Valentine on May 2, 2007

  3. Floyd Mayweather may be the most entertaining athlete on the planet. He’s gonna be talking shit before the fight, during the fight, and afterwareds. I’m seriously considering purchasing the pay-per-view, which is something i’ve never done.

    By Gangsta D on May 2, 2007

  4. As a fellow boxing fan, I’m happy there is a huge buzz surrounding the fight. Unfortunately I’m a little worried the common viewer will come away disappointed. The common fan is used to watching heavyweights on PPV and seeing a KO. This won’t be the slugfest that most fans want to see, and when it goes 12 to a decision, many people will come away feeling disappointed.

    By Larry Brown on May 2, 2007

  5. Some people may think that Floyd Mayweather may be the most entertaining athlete on the planet, but he is not very entertaining in the ring. He does not bring a lot of excitement to the boxing ring and he irritates a lot of people with his mouth.

    By merjoem32 on May 31, 2007

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