No one is going to argue that Shane Mosley's 2010 went well. In May, he was overwhelmed by Floyd Mayweather Jr. in a mega-money fight in Vegas, and in September he returned to the junior middleweight division to face Sergio Mora in what turned out to be one of the worst fights of the year from a fan standpoint, as Mora seemingly refused to engage Mosley in any sort of fight, resulting in 12 rounds of non-action.
Mosley is now quite relieved to be facing another fighter who likes to mix it up, as he prepares for Manny Pacquiao on May 7.
"It’s gonna be a great fight," Mosley said on today's media conference call. "With Sergio Mora, he’s a middleweight, he’s a boxer -- a tall, rangy boxer, and now I get a guy who’s my weight and a little shorter, and it’s just a little different. We love to fight."
Top Rank promoter Bob Arum agrees about the matchup producing excitement.
"Contrary to what everybody, what some people have said, the reason Shane was selected for this fight is because we’re in the entertainment business, and we know that Manny Pacquiao versus Shane Mosley will be one hellacious, entertaining fight," said Arum. "The same reason we selected Shane Mosley to fight Miguel Cotto years ago, and selected Shane to fight Tony Margarito a couple years ago. Shane is an all-action fighter, and when he’s in with a guy who’s an action fighter as well, you’re going to see fireworks, and you’re going to see a really exciting fight."
"Nobody’s ever walked out and asked for their money back in a Shane Mosley fight," said trainer Naazim Richardson.
Mosley enters the fight as a massive underdog -- with the bookies, with the fight media, with the fight fans. And though Mosley has been through the battles with almost all of the top fighters of his generation, he sees Pacquiao as a challenge that reminds him of one very early in his career. It was March 26, 1994, Mosley's 10th professional fight.
"I fought a guy back in the day, when I went the distance the first time with Oscar Lopez. He was southpaw, same tempo, awkwardness," said Mosley. "That would be the one I would compare to Pacquiao."
Richardson had his own comparison for Pacquiao. "Aaron Pryor was an all-action fighter and had a decent punch," he said.
"You could see his energy level was just extraordinary. And Pacquiao brings that same kind of electricity to the ring. And he’s difficult to answer because he’s so consistent. As he’s fought bigger guys the fights have gotten easier."
Mosley is also familiar with the underdog role, and says it motivates him to prove the skeptics wrong. "Looking back in the day when I fought Margarito they thought I was gonna get killed and people were scared for my healthy, and you know, it just helped motivate me."
"Everybody’s different, Pacquiao’s a southpaw, a lot smaller than those guys I fought. Maybe a little faster. I can’t anticipate anything until I get in the ring. I can anticipate a great fight and fireworks," he said.
Shane is also aware that at 39, there won't be many -- if any -- more opportunities like this one. "When I go into the fight, my mentality is going to be to win. There’s not going to be too many more fights on the horizon."
"I have to make sure that when I leave the fight there’s no regrets. I have to give 100%. I’m going to give them everything."
Richardson isn't concerned about Mosley's advanced age, or the fact that most see it is a big point in Pacquiao's favor. "Most of you saw the Erik Morales fight. Most of you saw the Pascal-Hopkins fight. And we keep counting these older fighters out. These aren’t just old men who box. These are legendary fighters," he said.
"We keep counting out these olders guys, we keep forgetting they were special guys. When special gets old, it can still be extraordinary."
Naazim also isn't buying into any chatter that usually accompanies a Pacquiao fight -- that the fighter could be distracted, for instance. "I think Manny’s focused, I think his camp is totally focused. I don’t believe his job in the government is a distraction. I don’t think Freddie going to England with Amir Khan is a distraction."
And he doesn't want Pacquiao to be given excuses if Mosley beats him. "I don’t want Manny to be declawed, defanged, people to reduce it to distractions," said Richardson. "They say he’s a killer, they say he’s the most monstrous fighter today."
Mosley didn't give specifics, but does know he's going to need a great game plan to beat Pacquiao, an upset that would rock the sports world.
"He’s proven he has the power to hurt people, so I know he has the power," Mosley said of the smaller man. "There’s so many different things, combinations that are key in the fight, you can’t just think you can do one thing and think it’s going to win the fight."
"You can’t just do one thing with me and expect to win, same thing for me. I can’t do just one thing against Pacquiao, I’ve got to do a lot of things."
"Fighters at this level have had to do everything it takes to be successful," Richardson added. "And Pacquiao, too,can become a boxer and a mover and a jabber and a sticker (against Mosley)."
"Shane Mosley is special, you can say there’s age on him, but he’s still special."
For more quotes from the conference call, check out our live updates. We'll have more tomorrow at 1pm EDT with Manny Pacquiao and Freddie Roach.