After the third meeting between Manny Pacquiao 54-3-2 (38) and Juan Manuel Marquez 53-6-1 (39) concluded this past Saturday night, the HBO broadcast team of Jim Lampley, Max Kellerman and Emanuel Steward were quick to point out that Marquez’s trainer Nacho Beristain was the scapegoat and part of the reason why the decision favoring Pacquiao was met with disapproval by most of the fans attending the fight, simply because Beristain told Marquez he had the fight won. Yeah, no less than six, and probably more like seven rounds of Marquez out-boxing Pacquiao was unraveled by one sentence.
How transparent was that? Everyone reading this knows Marquez wasn’t going to get the decision unless he beat Pacquiao half to death and he was being held up by the referee when the fight was over. Nacho isn’t why his fighter didn’t win the decision – even if Marquez won the last round the fight would’ve been a draw. Prior to their third fight there wasn’t much separating them and depending on who you asked, either fighter could’ve been declared the winner of both bouts. And their third fight this past weekend was no different. It was a very close fight and I wouldn’t consider the decision favoring Pacquiao a robbery. However, I scored it for Marquez 7-5 or 6-5-1 and thought he clearly won.
Those who are blaming Beristain are happy that things went the way they did and Pacquiao won the decision. Blaming Nacho is a smokescreen and deviates from the fact that Pacquiao has lost a little quickness and was a step behind Marquez for the better part of the fight. Manny is befuddled by straight punches and is often knocked out of position by them. As it was stated here before the fight, you don’t have to hurt Pacquiao to beat him, you just have to bother him and make him think instead of react, and that’s what Marquez did.
Based on how Pacquiao looked against Marquez this past weekend, Floyd Mayweather better drop the Olympic style drug testing demands and make the fight. He’s already waited too long and with the consensus favoring Marquez as to who won this past weekend, Mayweather can’t even claim he was first to beat Pacquiao during his great run over the last six years if he does win when they fight.
It’s amazing how Mayweather toyed with a younger Marquez and Pacquiao had life and death with him two years later fighting at 144. Maybe it’s just one of those things and Marquez, like Ken Norton with Ali, has Pacquiao’s number. Then again maybe it’s more because Manny is bothered by fighters who throw straight punches and don’t try to take his head off.
If you’re a huge Pacquiao fan or a Mayweather hater, hope and pray that Manny and Floyd never cross paths. Because if they do, you’re going to have your feelings hurt. Mayweather will beat Pacquiao by a comfortable decision and control the action most of the way. Pacquiao will look as though he’s stuck in second gear the whole fight. And then we’ll have to hear Mayweather say he’s the greatest ever because he beat a fighter who was stopped twice, was out-boxed by Erik Morales one night and in three bouts with Juan Manuel Marquez, has yet to beat him one time conclusively.
Manny Pacquiao is an all-time great and if Mayweather takes him apart, he should get his due props. But the bottom line is, Floyd Mayweather is too big and has the perfect style to beat Manny Pacquiao (this is nothing new here) and the longer the fight takes to be made, the more it favors Mayweather.