Pacquiao-Marques #3 - by Peter Leopeng
The Manny Pacquiao - Juan Manuel Marques III Was supposed to add another couple of tens of million dollars to the much anticipated Floyd Mayweather - Pacquiao bout. But instead the fight raised questions like:
So who got paid to fix this one? In fact the third leg of the trilogy did more harm than good. Pacquiao-Marquez III might have put the Mayweather-Pacquiao fight more in jeopardy than the instance of Floyd on drug testing. The bout suddenly doesn't have the same appeal it used to have anymore. To make a boxing match sell, there should be uncertainty as to the outcome. The biggest boxing match in the history of boxing, has lost that mystique so if anything, the fight on November 12 shouldn't have taken place as everybody ended up losing.
The fans lost because the result left a bitter taste in their mouths; Marquez felt cheated and rightly so because he thought he had done enough to win; Pacquiao was booed, the second time in a row after the Shane Moseley fuss; Mayweather has lost out on possibly the biggest payday of his boxing career, and this also goes for Pacquiao; and the television network HBO has lost out on possibly the biggest grossing fight of all time.
Pacman was supposed to dispose of Marquez in a spectacular fashion and set up a mouth watering encounter with Floyd. Why even his trainer Freddie Roach pleaded with his charge not to be too kind in the ring, referring to how Manny apparently "felt sorry" for Antonio Margarito and Shane Moseley by carrying them for 12 rounds.
Roach told everyone who would listen that the fight will not go past 6 rounds. Instead what we saw in the ring was what some of us suspected all along; and that is that Pacquiao has limitations.
Possibly his limitation don't go beyond speed and power. There is no doubt that the man is a master when it comes to combining the two attributes, something akin to most boxers. When a boxer has speed, he sacrifices on his power. When he has power, for him to execute it fully, he has to get the right balance and leverage and that takes away the speed. But the Filipino Express has the uncanny ability to do both with devastating results.
However, all that counts for nothing if the target is elusive. As Muhammad Ali said: "hitting power ain't nothing if you've got nothing to hit". Against Marquez the result was a frustrated Manny who ran out of ideas.
Unlike in their two previous fights, Pacquiao failed to drop the Mexican in any round. He ran out of ideas and this is where the difference between a good boxer and a great one comes in. The latter makes adjustments as Mayweather has done so many times when he fought difficult opponents. An excellent boxer will study his opponent and come up with a way to neutralize his strength and come up with a winning formula.
Pacquiao has relied mainly in overwhelming his opponents with a barrage of punches and nothing more. Marquez frustrated him with beautiful counterpunching and ring generalship, and the Filipino was exposed. At some point he seemed to lose concentration and became disinterested.
Some analysts say maybe, just maybe Pacquiao has lost the passion for boxing. He's now an elected congressman in his country and is rich beyond imagination. They say perhaps boxing is no longer as appealing to him. He hasn't stopped an opponent in his last 4 fights.
If Pacquiao could struggle like that with Marquez and Mayweahter practically toyed with the Mexican when they bought, it is not hard to imagine what will happen if the two ever meet.
If that fight does happen, unfortunately both boxers will have to settle for a substantial cut in their purses because the result could be obvious. In fact, Pacquiao-Marquez IV might be more appealing than the Floyd clash. Bob Arum, hearing the boos from the crowd, felt that the fourth leg of Filipino-Mexican journey will sell very well.
I seem to agree with the promoter because after 36 rounds of boxing, this one is yet to be definitively decided, whereas if you know your boxing you will understand why Mayweather-Pacquiao will be a one sided.