Floyd Mayweather Jr. said that he plans to impose his size on Marcos Maidana as the "naturally bigger man," take away his best attribute — which is the ability to punch hard — and that welterweight counterparts Manny Pacquiao and Tim Bradley fought like amateurs in their recent clash.
Mayweather's comments were made during a national conference call on Wednesday.
Mayweather (45-0, 26 knockouts), who turned 37 in February, has fought three times as a junior middleweight, dethroning Oscar De La Hoya as WBC beltholder following a split-decision in May 2007, beating three-division titleholder Miguel Cotto by unanimous decision in May to earn the WBA's title, and taking a majority decision over Canelo Alvarez in September, adding Alvarez's RING and WBC 154-pound championships to the WBA belt he already owned.
Meanwwhile, the 30-year-old Maidana (35-3, 31 KOs) will be fighting as a 147-pound for only the fifth time after having campaigned mostly at junior welterweight. He is 4-0 with three stoppage wins at welterweight.
"We must realize that I am the bigger guy," said Mayweather, who will put his RING and WBC welterweight championships on the line against Maidana's WBA title. "I walk around at 150, and I don't go no higher than 152. I'm naturally the bigger guy because I've been at 147 for almost 10 years now. So I'm naturally the bigger guy."
Mayweather also addressed his radar-like ability to anticipate the punches of opponents and the angles from which they will throw them.
"I think that the game plan will be to stay in the pocket and to make the guy miss and to make the guy pay. I can see shots. I can see shots coming from the guy. I can feel the guy when he's going to throw a punch. I don't have to see it, I can feel it. When he stands there, I'm in front of the guy when he's ready to throw the shot," said Mayweather.
"Some guys telegraph their shots and what side they're going to throw it to because of how they position themselves. You know because a guy is standing a certain way which shot he's going to throw. But my thing is that whatever a guy's best attribute is, and whatever he does best, I take that away from them and make them resort to doing something else. Maidana obviously punces extremely hard. That's obviously that his best attribute. But a lot of times, when a guy throws a lot of big shots, you can get fatigued like that."
During a unanimous decision loss to Amir Khan in December 2010, Maidana had to rise from a first-round body shot.
"I am pretty sure that he's going to be well-rounded and ready for this fight, because he's fighting at a totally different level. I can't just go in there just to look for the body. The guy could have been doing a lot of situps to get his body into tip-top condition and tip-top shape, and I think that Amir Khan could have just caught him with a good shot," said Mayweather.
"My body is in very, very good condition, but sometimes, I can get hit with a good shot and I can feel it. How we're going to approach the fight is that we're going to go out there and take our time and if the guy leaves an opening on his face or leaves an opening on his body, we'll take it. We can't just make everything going for the body."
After Maidana (35-3, 31 KOs) suffered a one-sided loss to southpaw Devon Alexander in his 147-pound debut in February of 2012, his manager, Sebastian Contursi was a catalyst for switching to trainer Robert Garcia, under whom Maidana was transformed from a demoralized boxer into a rejuvenated winner of three straight fights by knockout: in the eighth round over Jesus Soto Karass, the third against Angel Martinez and the sixth opposite Josesito Lopez.
That run culminated with December's unanimous decision over previously unbeaten Adrien Broner, flooring him once each in the second and eighth rounds to earn his current belt.
"What's different is that Maidana may not be accustomed to fighting southpaws, so that may have played a major key against Devon Alexander. Also, he was fighting on Alexander's turf. I think that the difference is that Devon Alexander is a more straight-up boxer," said Mayweather.
"I think that the Maidana who is facing me, his confidence has been built up after he beat Adrien Broner because he feels that our styles are very, very similar. So we'll see how the fight is going to play out. I think he's more confident now than he was when he faced the kid from St. Louis, Devon Alexander, so I think that he will be more rugged and more tough. If you're more confident, it's going to make you fight harder."
Mayweather also addressed the April 12 bout between Pacquiao and Bradley, who lost the WBO belt to Pacquiao by unanimous decision after having dethroned him by disputed split-decison in June 2012.
"Actually, I did watch the fight. I hadn't seen Pacquiao fight in years. I hadn't seen Pacquiao fight since he fought Miguel Cotto," said Mayweather, referring to Pacquiao's 12th-round stoppage win for the WBO 147-pound belt in November 2009.
"Congratulations to him. I thought that he was the better man…I think that Bradley went out there and fought his heart out, but I think that he was throwing a lot of shots like an amateur…I think that both of fighters fought like amateurs. I think that Pacquiao fought like an amateur, also, and I wasn't pleased with his performance. He got the victory the best way he knows how, but I wasn't pleased with his performance."
Mayweather also implied that Bradley's muscularity hinders him as a fighter.
"They need to make a lot of changes in Bradley, because he's lifting too many weights. I think he's more worried about how he looks on that scale instead of how he fights inside that ring," said Mayweather. "He made a lot of mistakes, and he was very, very fatigued early on. I think that he was making a lot of mistakes and falling off balance like an amateur."
Mayweather re-iterated that he is not ready to fight Pacquiao because he is promoted by Top Rank CEO Bob Arum.
"I'm seeing a totally different Pacquiao," said Mayweather. "But that don't make me go and say that I'm ready to go out there and fight him. He's with Bob Arum and I'm with Mayweather Promotions."