Survival Of The Fittest: Will It Be The Strong That Survives?

Countdown Day #3 is in the books and today we find ourselves looking at a question that has been asked a million different ways. One of the reasons this question continues to reincarnate is because no matter what ‘shell’ you put on it, the contents remain the same. On one side you have perhaps the biggest draw the sports has seen in recent years and on the other side you have perhaps the most talented fighter the sport has seen in recent years. How this all plays out in the end will come down to the killer instincts of both men and quickly we’ll take a glimpse: Oscar De la Hoya: The ‘Golden’ Rules Rule #1. Stay away from the left hook. Rule #2. Stay away from the left hook. It’s that simple. With Oscar De la Hoya you can use just about any word that you wish. Although gutsy, courageous, and talented fit the bill, strong is the one most pertinent to his pending showdown with Floyd Mayweather Jr. Although to two started out at the same weight class (130lbs), Oscar has made the transition to life with the ‘big boys’ (154lbs) seem a bit easier. His punching power has appeared to travel north with his weight and has been a true claim to fame, as evidenced in his recent victory over ‘Wild-Man’ Ricardo Mayorga where Oscar’s patented left hook was on display until the typically granite-bearded Mayorga refused to have any more. Oscar, known for his good looks and suave style outside the ring is totally the opposite in the ring and none of his opponents would ever deny. There have been many times when Oscar has seemed to be out on his feet and out of no where a burst of energy allowed him to close out strong and in some cases even stop his opposition before the end of the final round. Perfect examples of this was the victories over Ike Quartey and Fernando Vargas where both fighters appeared to had gotten the best of De la Hoya and in the blink of an eye things changed and culminated in another De la Hoya highlight reel. This is the aspect of his fight game that Floyd fans fear the most because if it was enough to rock bigger foes who were established in this 154lb division, it should certainly be considered a ‘cloud’ hanging over a smaller Floyd who on his worst day walks around at no larger than 150lbs. Floyd Mayeweather Jr: A ‘Pretty Fatal’ Attraction What is it about Floyd Mayweather Jr. that attracts fight fans? With Floyd Mayweather Jr. his skill set in its totality is far more superior to most and is punctuated by his throwback style. Although he has good power, his true ‘calling card’ is his elusiveness. Prided on quickness, whether it be footwork, throwing punches, counter-punching, or ducking punches, Floyd’s ability to stick and move remains nearly unparalleled in the sport today. From a power standpoint, one thing that’s a bit tricky about Floyd is that his power is deceptive. Fighters like Oscar have power with more of a pure demonstration. With Floyd, his power has more to do with the velocity in which his punches come, sort of like a Roy Jones Jr. who was never really a knockout artist but managed to give many foes the perfect position to ‘star-gaze’ as the proper timed blow was too much to recover from within the confines of a standard 10 count. Floyd’s ability to combine speed with his regular attributes have been the perfect antidote to most of his opponents’ poison. This was never more visible than in the Diego Corrales fight when Floyd came from his corner (in what I believe was the 9th round) and floored Corrales less than 3 seconds into the round as Corrales came out flat footed, expecting to get the normal feeling out process. This shot exemplified everything about who Floyd is. Intelligence. Intelligence to know exactly how swift to attack, and when it’s time to plot and hold back. This attribute of Floyd’s on paper would seem to nullify Oscar’s power but as we know, (as will more than likely be the case), paper burns. Will It Be The Strong That Survives? How this turns out will come down to Oscar’s punching power against Floyd’s speed. Will it be the ‘Strong’ that survives? If he (Oscar) can find a way to combine that power with lightning quick speed, no doubt. The operative word there, however, is ‘FIND’, because what Oscar has to look for, Floyd already has, (speed). That fact alone could undoubtedly turn this subplot into the end result. Log in tomorrow to check out the latest installment of the countdown to Oscar De la Hoya and Floyd Mayweather Jr. Below is a list of the last remaining articles to be posted as we narrow this mega fight down:

  • 05/03 – Thu: “What They Say”: Talking Strategies With The Experts
  • 05/04 – Fri: “What The Say”…Volume 2: Fan Fight Poll From Fans Around The Globe
  • 05/05 – Sat: Big Bang Theory: Fight Night Projections/Celebrity Predictions
  • 05/06 – Sun: The Aftermath: Fight Breakdown and Results

About Tim Starks

Tim is the founder of The Queensberry Rules and co-founder of The Transnational Boxing Rankings Board ( He lives in Washington, D.C. He has written for the Guardian, Economist, New Republic, Chicago Tribune and more.