Mosley-Berto set for Jan. 30
After Pacquiao-Cotto, the welterweight division continues to heat up
Report by Andreas Hale
Photos by Chris Cozzone
As the debris of Manny Pacquiao’s destruction of Miguel Cotto still lingers, fight fans can already begin preparing for what could be another barn burner. On January 30, at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, “Sugar” Shane Mosley will return from his year layoff to take on Andre Berto in a fight that will have major implications on the welterweight division.
It’s a matchup that could showcase a changing of the guard as the young lion Andre Berto looks to punch the clock on the 38-year-old Shane Mosley. Mosley, on the other hand, wants to prove that he continues to get better with age and show that his flawless performance against Antonio Margarito last year was no fluke.
Prior to Saturday’s fight between Pacquiao and Cotto, Berto and Mosley began to stir the pot as they announced their upcoming showdown to be shown on HBO.
Berto’s promoter Lou Dibella noted that Mosley may have looked excellent against Margarito, but, given the circumstances, he should have.
“You looked sensational against Margarito,” Dibella said during the press conference at Mandalay Bay. “But you had a guy in front of you. He came right at you and had no speed. Right before the fight, he got caught for the cheater he is.”
Dibella did all he could to diffuse Mosley’s January 24th performance that saw him TKO the then-lauded Margarito in the 9th round. He made it a point to mention that Margarito was clearly a different fighter after he got caught for loaded gloves and that is the reason that Mosley had the upper hand in their fight.
“As good as you looked, he let you look better than you are,” he continued before opening the door for what he would like to call the “Berto Era.” “Father Time is not any of our friends and on January 30th in my heart I believe that the Shane Mosley era ends and the Berto era begins.”
With an impressive record of 26-0 (19 KOs) Andre Berto has been talking about stepping into the ring with Mosley for some time now. He’s coming off a unanimous decision victory against Juan Urango back on June 5th and is salivating at the opportunity to finally face Mosley.
“This is the fight I’ve waited my whole career for and now it’s finally a reality,” the WBC welterweight champion said. “Shane Mosley made me chase him for a while, but he won’t be able to run when we get into the ring on January 30th, I can’t wait!”
Mosley enters the fight as a sure fire Hall of Famer with an impressive record of 46-5 (1 no contest) and 39 of his wins coming by knockout. Some may say that his career is winding down, but Golden Boy Promotions’ Oscar De La Hoya says that he’s just as good today as he was when he fought him nearly a decade ago.
“38 is now the 28 of today,” De La Hoya said as he flashed his million dollar smile. “(Mosley) is still young and fresh. That’s what sets him apart from all the fighters today.”
Never one to be rattled, Mosley is appreciative that Berto holds him in such high regards. However, he thinks that Berto is simply not ready to step into the ring with a fighter of his caliber.
“Andre Berto’s a good young fighter but he’s bitten off more than he can chew with all the talking he’s been doing,” the WBA welterweight super world champion said. “I’ve forgotten more about the fight game than he knows and the world will see that in January.”
Mosley is also aware of the comparisons between the two fighters. Although he does agree that Berto may be a younger version of him, he also believes that there are some holes in Berto’s game that he is prepared to exploit.
“I always thought Berto fought like me and I did say he made a lot of mistakes,” Mosley said. “He still makes those mistakes and its going to be a problem when we fight. I’m so excited to be able to fight on January 30th.”
What also makes this fight interesting for fight fans is the fact that it will not be a PPV clash. Instead, the fight will be seen on HBO. To make the pot even sweeter, for those fight fans who complain about prices, tickets for Mosley Vs Berto start at $50 and go up to $300.
For these reasons, there is no reason to miss this monster bout that will kick off 2010 with a bang.