By Mark Vester
Hall of fame trainer Emanuel Steward is giving WBA welterweight champion Shane Mosley a very good shot to beat Floyd Mayweather Jr. this Saturday at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. At a recent HBO meeting, Steward was surprised that most of the HBO crew had Mosley (46-5, 39 KOs) as an 8-1 underdog in the fight. He thinks Mayweather (40-0, 25 KOs) is going to have a very tough time.
"This shapes up as a great bout -- better than Manny Pacquiao and Oscar De La Hoya or Mayweather and De La Hoya, or Mayweather and Juan Manuel Marquez. Mosley will test Mayweather, get him out of his comfort zone. At 38, Mosley is still an exceptional human being. There's something special about him. He'll bring out the best in Mayweather," Steward told Detroit Free Press.
"I had a lunch meeting a few weeks ago with the HBO boxing crew -- Jim Lampley, Larry Merchant and Harold Lederman. They thought Mosley [was] an 8-1 shot. I said, I think you guys are crazy -- this isn't any runaway fight."
While Steward is predicting that Mayweather is going to have a tough time, he gives the flamboyant fighter the minor edge to win a decision with his counter-punching and boxing ability.
"Floyd will pick his spots -- keep the fight outside. He'll counterpunch and fight a technical bout. He has superior speed and movement," Steward said.
"The intensity of this fight will be more than Floyd has ever faced. This is definitely his biggest test. Mosley is just big enough to attack him. It's hard to call. I believe it's a dead-even fight. ... The officiating will be the key: Mayweather, possibly, by decision."
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