The November 12th PPV third encounter between boxing’s brightest star, Manny Pacquiao, 53-3-2, 38 KO’s, and Juan Manuel Marquez, 53-5-1, 39 KO’s, is the next big thing in the sport. The Floyd Mayweather, JR.- Victor Ortiz fiasco left the boxing fans with a bad taste in their mouth and has hurt the sport immensely. The fans now look for rescue with this upcoming fight and they have reason to believe that they will get a sportsmanlike, competitive scrap. Unfortunately, we will most likely have more disappointment.
The first bout in 2004 was a war, with Pacquiao dropping Marquez three times in the first round. The courageous Marquez fought on and battled his way to a well-earned draw. It was the fight of the year in the estimation of many and as the Filipino sensation easily dismantled everyone else, a rematch with Marquez became a high demand. After all, Marquez did the best, used his boxing ability, and grit to subdue and remain competitive with Pacquiao. If anyone, outside of Mayweather, JR., could beat Pacquiao, it was Marquez.
In 2008, the two would reunite and have another epic war with Pacquiao squeaking by with a split decision win. Both bouts can be debated and there is a large group that believes that Marquez won both encounters, and that has led to this latest showdown.
Manny has been dominant and with Mayweather, JR., not interested in a fight, Marquez is the logical choice, but the signs are there for a one-sided beating with Pacquiao standing above another mangled opponent.
When Pacquiao fought Erik Morales, he struggled and lost the first encounter. Adjustments were made and Morales would be stopped in the rematch. In the third encounter, Pacquiao steamrolled him and stopped him early. Marquez has done better, but he has said some things that are raising some eyebrows.
Marquez talked very highly of Pacquiao, speaking of his improvements and it appears as if he’s already conceding. He is 38 years old and will be trying to fend off a stronger opponent. The reflexes of Marquez are not what they were, he doesn’t have the punch to scare Manny, and he may not be mentally right going into this fight. He will have to be at his best and I’m not sure that he will be able to get there, even if everything in training and preparation go according to plan.
The plan of attack for Manny is to systematically break down Marquez, and fight intelligently to achieve the stoppage in the middle rounds, which is the most likely ending to this trilogy. There are certain times when the demeanor of a fighter tells all, and Marquez does not seem confident going into this fight. He may be in this strictly for the payday and he will make a pretty penny, but the fans will be ripped off again, and this will not be any sort of road to Floyd Mayweather. Floyd has zero interest in the Pacquiao challenge and judging by his recent actions, he could care less about the sport or his fans.
Pacquiao fans, if you want to see you’re hero destroy another foe, this will be it. Boxing fans, if you are looking for another epic war, you will not find it here. There is no way that Marquez can hold off Pacquiao this time. He will be lucky to make it 8 rounds. Look for a middle round stoppage and an immediate announced retirement from Marquez.