By Steve Kim
So what did trainer Freddie Roach work on with Alberto Machado (19-0, 16 KOs) in the wake off his come-off-the-canvas victory over Jezreel Corrales for the WBA super featherweight title as they prepared to face Rafael Mensah this Saturday night in Las Vegas?
"The biggest thing we had to work on was footwork,"Roach told BoxingScene.com. "His footwork got a little sloppy and he gets too wide and then too short, keeps his feet together. So we're working on the footwork and putting them together and it'll help his punching power, eventually.
"He's hitting now with all his body weight and we did it over and over and over again, it was all footwork. Both feet have to work together. It finally sunk in and his footwork is really, really good now, similar to what I did with (Manny) Pacquiao a hundred years ago."
The lanky southpaw from Puerto Rico was down on the scorecards to Corrales going into the 8th round but he turned things around with his right hook, which is his preferred weapon.
"That's probably his best shot at this point. That hook will get anybody out of there," said Roach.
In Mensah, they are facing a fellow left-handed who is an adept boxer from Ghana.
"Very solid, he definitely likes to fight. There's not a lot of tape on him, we could only find one fight so far but he comes to fight and the thing is when we start to back him up, that's when we're going to take charge and we'll knock him out," Roach said.
The bout with Mensah will take place at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino. HBO will televised the fight, with WBO junior middleweight champion Jaime Munguia defending the title against mandatory Liam Smith in the main event.
Steve Kim is the news editor for BoxingScene.com.