Mosley and Berto meet the media
LAS VEGAS — It’s been so difficult for Shane Mosley to land a significant fight following his one-sided stoppage of Antonio Margarito in January the welterweight titleholder says he often felt as though he was on the same one-year suspension the Mexican mauler is currently serving for attempting to load his gloves before their fight.
However, with the announcement of his title-unification bout with Andre Berto, a fight that’s been on the backburner all year as Mosley aggressively — and futilely — pursued mega-matches with Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather Jr., the 38-year-old veteran will finally return to the ring on January 30.
Although Berto (25-0, 19 KOs) lacks the recognition and accomplishment of Mayweather and Pacquiao the 26-year-old fireplug possesses the kind of talent and style that could trouble Mosley.
When the two fighters met each other and the media at their kick-off press conference on Saturday, which took place at the fight site Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino, the prevailing comment was that Berto is like a young version of Mosley.
The similarities are obvious: blazing hand speed, explosive offense, and a fierce competitive spirit.
Berto says the obvious difference, their age disparity (12 years), is why he will prevail on Jan. 30.
“Mosley is not used to fighting guys who are fast as he is,” Berto told writers after the press conference. “Mosley is not as quick as he looked against Margarito, a guy who stood in front of him and was extremely slow. I think he’s slowed down a bit with age.
“My speed, movement and explosiveness will give him trouble.”
Berto also questioned Mosley’s focus.
“He’s got his mind on bigger fights down the road,” Berto said. “He’s not thinking about me. He’s thinking about tonight’s winner (of the Pacquiao-Miguel Cotto fight) and Mayweather. I think this fight means more to me than it does to him. I believe I’m more focused than he is.”
Mosley (46-5, 39 KOs) begged to differ.
“The only focus I have is on fighting,” the former three-division champ told the media. “It’s never about names. I’m never focused on any one fighter. Nothing is on my mind but boxing. I love to fight and I want to fight the best fighters. Berto is the best fighter who was willing to fight me, so now he’s my focus.
“I’ve said what I had to say about Mayweather and Pacquiao earlier this year. I called them out and that’s that. I’m done with that. I’m not going to chase these guys any more. I gave my peace.”
Mosley admitted that he once told Berto’s promoter, Lou DiBella, that the young man from Miami, Fla., reminded him of himself, however, he said that he made other observations on the up-and-coming boxer-puncher.
“I know Berto’s style,” Mosley said, “he’s a very talented boxer but he has flaws. He makes some mistakes that I will definitely take advantage of if he makes them against me.”