Originally Posted by The Gambler1981
Floyd may or may not age well, he has so far and given his skill level he will likely be able to hang on and still be a very hard guy to beat up or take out until the very end but someone will be able to fight him close enough to give him a loss sooner rather than later I reckon (Taylor-B-Hop Taylor can't really hold B-Hop jock strap in a boxing sense but he was young and athletic which allowed him to make the fights close that he got the nod, that could easily happen to Floyd).
Like I said already, I do expect Floyd to decline much more gradually than Manny. But that said, the guy still does rely on his reflexes and explosiveness to a large degree. How long past the age of 35 is he going to maintain those attributes as a WW/JMW?
I definitely thought was feeling the pace a bit against Cotto too, as Cotto's determination to cut off the ring and force him onto the ropes was taking a lot out of both of them. As the fight went on he recovered brilliantly and was clearly the stronger man going down the stretch.
He often controls such fights, where he's faced with an intelligent aggressor, with his footwork though. And I think part of the reason he ended up in uncomfortable situations against Cotto was because he wasn't quite sharp enough on his toes to wrong-foot Cotto and keep bringing the fight to where he wanted it. Again, that's understandable for a 35 year old.
Not taking any of the credit away from Cotto btw, he fought a smart and exceptionally disciplined fight on the night. But nevertheless there were little signs here and there that Floyd might not be quite as invincible as he once was.
A funny thing about sport is that a lot of the time, no one sees the end coming for great athletes and great teams. Sometimes a guy looks on top of the world and at that point in time, it can be almost impossible to believe that they would never be that good again. That's how it happens though, and the signs of deterioration can often only be detected with the benefit of hindsight.
I'm not saying Floyd is at that point yet, but you just never know. And as athletes get into their late 30s, the statistical likelihood of that abrupt fall from grace increases all the time.