Manny Pacquiao on the Decline

I think Manny Pacquiao’s loss to Timothy Bradley is a clear indication that he is on the decline. He is now 33, so age-wise he is on that bracket where he is past his peak, and where you can expect him to slowly go down in terms of his athletic capability.

‘First Two Signs’
The first sign was in his fight against Joshua Clottey, Antonio Margarito and Shane Mosley. After a spectacular 12th round knock out of Miguel Cotto, he was unable to knockout his next three opponents. Although he did look impressive against Margarito and Mosley, he was unable to knock both of them out, and had to settle for just a dominating performance.

At that time, I thought his opponents were just getting too big for him. Punches that would’ve been enough to bring down lighter and smaller opponents now only sting these bigger and heavier opponents, not enough to bring them down for the count.
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Knocking Out Shane Mosley

The fight between Shane Mosley and Manny Pacquiao in Las Vegas had just ended, and Manny Pacquiao won by Unanimous Decision. By all accounts, it was a one-sided affair, with Manny dominating and winning all twelve rounds of the fight.

However, I am pretty disappointed with the result. I actually expected Manny to Knock Out Shane Mosley. The reason for that is not just in terms of my high expectation of Manny, but more importantly, I felt it would’ve had a significant impact in his negotiations for a fight with Floyd Mayweather.

‘Leverage Against Mayweather’
One thing to remember about Shane Mosley, is that he is one of the few opponents that is common to both Manny Pacquiao, and Floyd Mayweather. Everybody knows that Pretty Gay Floyd has been avoiding Pacquiao for as long as he can, wary of the only fighter that perhaps could not only beat him, but knock him out as well.

Floyd fought Mosley in May 1, 2010, and in that fight, Mayweather also dominated the bout, but it also lasted all twelve rounds, with Mayweather winning by Unanimous Decision.

My feeling is that if Pacquiao had knocked out Mosley, then that would’ve given the impression that Pacquiao was better than Mayweather, since Manny was able to do something that Floyd had not. Then that would’ve put a lot of pressure on Floyd Mayweather.
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Shane Mosley vs. Floyd Mayweather Fight

PRE-FIGHT
Mayweather enters the ring with a circus act, and three guy singing live. Mayweather theme is the same one used on “The Appentice”, the one that says, “Money-money-money-mo-neeey …”. Michael Buffer starts the introductions.

ROUND 1: Mosley slips, no knock down. Mosley going to the body. Mayweather’s body very quick in evading punches, but overall boring round, just lots of feinting, hugging, and jabs.

ROUND 2: Mosley tags Mayweather with a solid right straight, Mayweather looked hurt as he clung to Mosley’s right hand. Mosley lands another good right hook, Mayweather drops to one knee but gets back up. Mayweather now clinging to Mosley for life.

ROUND 3: Mayweather on the attack, tags Mosley with some good shots. Mosley breathing out of his mouth, not a good sign.

ROUND 4: Mayweather showing off his hand speed, tagging Mosley in and out, in and out. Mayweather looks like he’s ahead on points.
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The Sweet Science's "Deconstructing Manny"

“The Sweet Science” website came out today with probably the best article written about Manny Pacquiao so far. It is written by a writer named, “Springs Toledo”.

“Springs Toledo” is a strange name, even for a writer. If you reverse it, it ends up “Toledo Springs”, which is like a familiar-sounding place in the US.

This writer also writes irregularly, sometimes a month apart, indicating that the topics he writes are carefully chosen.

The strange name, irregular, well-screened subjects and extra-ordinary writing style makes me think that “Springs Toledo” is a pseudonymn of a great literary writer/boxing fan. Or perhaps it is the work of a pool of writers, sharing their work for a special topic. In this case, it is Manny Pacquiao.

Here are the first five paragraphs of the article. The rest of the article can be read at the link at the bottom of the page:
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Manny Pacquiao vs. Miguel Cotto

‘Fight Prelude’
– Miguel Cotto is being shown having his hands being taped, with Roach watching

– Foreman-Santos fight over, with Foreman winning the bout by decision. Foreman knocked Santos down on the closing minutes of the twelfth round.

– Inspectors shown signing Cotto’s gloves. Start of the fifth round between Chavez Jr. and Rowland.

– Trio sings the Philippine National Anthem in Yellow, Red and Blue National dresses. Nice, really nice. One of the most memorable National Anthems I’ve heard.

– Fat, ugly blonde girl sings the Puerto Rican National Anthem. LOL.
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Why Cotto Will Lose to The Pacman

Manny “The Pacman” Pacquiao will again be fighting this weekend on Saturday, November 14, 2009 (Las Vegas time), and based on what I have read and seen lately, I think Manny will beat Cotto relatively easily, similar to the Diaz fight, for a couple of reasons:

First, Cotto will obviously have problems matching Manny’s speed. His punching power in terms of doing damage to Manny I feel is also a bit overrated. Cotto wasn’t able to knock out Malignaggi, while a supposedly smaller fighter like Hatton was able to dispose of Malignaggi in the eleventh round of their match.

Second, that split with his trainer, who also happened to be his uncle, has a big psychological effect on Cotto. It was an ugly split, with Cotto breaking his uncle’s nose and ribs, and then Evangelista throwing a brick on Cotto’s SUV. Evangelista has reportedly now filed a USD 7.5 million suit against Miguel in Puerto Rico. That kind of family problem has got to be a major distraction.

Next, Cotto replaced his uncle, whom he has worked with in his corner winning title belts, with a nobody in Santiago. As a result, his performance against Clottey was not particularly convincing. In effect, Cotto is basically running his own show, with a mediocre trainer in his corner. Manny, on the other hand, has a genius in Freddie Roach in his corner.

I agree with mighty_lion that Cotto’s sparring partners were mediocre, basically unknowns. Manny, on the other hand, has been sparring with a boxing legend in Luis Castillo, and in legitimate future upcoming stars like Shawn Porter. Take note that Porter is a Jr. Middleweight, fighting at 154 lbs., heavier than Cotto who is only a Welterweight (147 lbs.). Porter is currently 10-0, with 8 knockouts. A bigger fighter, who can punch. I think this aspect alone shows the quality (or lack of) of the training camps of both fighters for this fight.
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Pacquiao versus Dela Hoya

I am oh so glad to live at a time when we get to see some of the greatest athletes the world has ever seen, like Michael Jordan, and now Manny Pacquiao, the greatest Filipino boxer of all time, and one of the greatest boxers of all time. His fight with Oscar Dela Hoya is now part of the history books, let me save the items I posted on various message boards in the internet here on my blog for posterity.

Here is my blow-by-blow account of the fight:

Pre-Fight
– Keyshia Cole sings the US National Anthem
– Karyll (Zsa-Zsa Padila’s daughter) sings the Philippine National Anthem. She did a lousy job of singing it. Missed some words, voice not that great (shakes head)
– Crowd cheering as Manny is shown sparring with Roach on video
– Manny entering the ring to the tune of “We Will Rock You”. He looked very relaxed entering the ring, smiling, waving around
– Dela Hoya looked VERY fit as shown on the weigh in videos. Could be bad news for Manny
– Oscar entering the ring. He still looks pensive, though

Round One
– Ring introductions over, start of Round One
– Manny more active on his feet, landed a couple of good punches. Dela Hoya ineffective. Manny dominates Oscar in Round One. Go Manny!!!

Round Two
– Manny again for Round Two. Manny too quick on his feet for Oscar. Shi_, this could be a repeat of the Diaz-Pacquiao fight
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