Following Saturday night’s shocking events which saw Juan Manuel Marquez knock arch rival Manny Pacquiao out cold in a 6 round war which saw both men touching down there has been a lot of questions asked regarding a number of topics in the aftermath of this fight. I have attempted to address every issue regarding the next step for everybody concerned with this result, share my views on who I think this outcome benefits most and touch on the PED’s argument.
Juan Manuel Marquez
What a night in the career of the legendary Mexican, finally getting his much desired victory over his arch rival at the 4th attempt and almost certainly cements his place as Mexico’s number 1 fighter. The Ultimate question now is. “What next for Juan Manuel Marquez?”
If you ask Bob Arum he would most definitely say yes, as would most of the enthralled viewers, but from a Juan Manuel Marquez point of view is this fight worth it other than financial gain? I would say absolutely not. After three controversial results, surely a knockout victory from either side would have closed this chapter in both men’s career, and in my opinion that is what it has done. What does Marquez achieve by fighting Pacquiao again, after all in his mind he already won four times, and has a sensational knockout victory to close any doubt, so why does Marquez need to go down this route again, to please the fans? You have pleased us four times now… you now deserve better. Better he says, where could he go to get better…
Bradley is not a bigger name than Pacquiao, nowhere near, but he does hold a victory over Pacquiao, all be it, a highly controversial one. Surely after the most incredible knockout victory of his extraordinary career a world title shot up at Welterweight is the least the legendary Mexican deserves. There is a story here as well, an undefeated American off the back of a victory against Pacquiao, against the man who just knocked Pacquiao out cold. The intrigue will be there because people will be intrigued to see how good Marquez really is up at Welterweight and will want to witness who is the better Pacquiao conqueror.
Does this mean Manny Pacquiao is finished in the sport of boxing? Absolutely not! Yes he has lost two fights in succession, but the boxing world knows he was on the wrong end of a decision in the Timothy Bradley fight. His next fight will in my opinion be the most important in his career, as a sickening knockout defeat like he suffered is enough to damage any man’s state of mind, and a lot of fighters never recover. If Pacquiao can fight again which he says he will, it will be interesting to assess his performance, and approach, because most boxing fans predicted at some point, his wide open style was going to land him in trouble, most predicting against Floyd Mayweather, but it shows it only takes a couple of punches to hurt a man.
It would be tragic if Manny Pacquiao ended his career after a devastating loss, and frankly deserves to go out in a better way. He is a proud man, with the backing of an entire nation, for me it would be out of the question to see Pacquiao call time on his career now, but who is next?
It had been reported previously that win, lose or draw against Juan Manuel Marquez that a fight with Timothy Bradley or Brandon Rios would be next for Manny Pacquiao and for me that is more the case now than ever. Both are likely as both are signed with Top Rank, but I would go with Brandon Rios.
Mayweather vs Marquez II for me, no thank you. Yes this is a better Marquez in my opinion than the one that fought Floyd, due to the fact he is better accustomed at the weight and had more time to get used to his new weight BUT Floyd Mayweather is a different kettle of fish than Manny Pacquiao. Mayweather is a lot harder to hit as Marquez acknowledged, and is far more intelligent in the ring that makes less mistake, with a more awkward style for Marquez. Yes the fight will sell because Mayweather is in the fight and Marquez will have an even bigger following now. The fight will fall in May or September with both dates are big Mexican holidays, but for me Floyd wins comfortably again, and I personally wish to see Marquez go on and claim a world title at this weight to cap an amazing career, but sorry that would not be against Floyd Mayweather.
Floyd Mayweather shown a lot of class with his comments regarding the knock-out defeat for Manny Pacquiao and has made it clear that the Pacquiao fight in his mind is off the table as it is hard for Pacquiao to come back from a defeat like that. Folks, let’s put this in perspective, this fight was not going to happen anyway, not whilst Bob Arum is in the sport, so nothing has changed here. Floyd Mayweather will most likely go on and face Robert Guerrero in May and then assess the situation from that point on.
Bob Arum benefits most from Saturday’s results.
Manny Pacquiao is unquestionably the cash cow of Top Rank promotions, so most would expect Bob Arum to be extremely disappointed with his prized asset being knocked out on Saturday night. How wrong were we… he seemed surprisingly joyful when jumping in on Manny Pacquiao’s interview. This is in no way having a go at Bob but this result has worked out perfectly for him, and here is why:
A Top Rank Triple
It was reported before the Pacquiao vs Marquez that Pacquiao would go on and face Brandon Rios or Timothy Bradley and he almost certainly will, however the Marquez victory throws him in at the deep end in this money pool for Bob Arum. Pacquiao will always be a big draw in the sport between now and when he chooses to retire, so whoever he fights will do bigger numbers than anybody else in the sport not named Floyd Mayweather, but now Marquez has that added intrigue to his name and the working relationship he has with Top Rank promotions opens a number of doors to big fights.
A Top Rank triple fight scenario with Pacquiao vs Rios and Bradley vs Marquez with the two winners facing off for the world title that Bradley currently possesses. How does that sound? It sounds pretty good, logical and fair to me. Many people will say let’s see Pacquiao vs Marquez for the fifth time, not for me, as it is not beneficial for Marquez, or some say Pacquiao vs Bradley II, also not for me, as does a man off the back of two losses deserve a title shot? Not a chance. If Pacquiao can defeat Rios, then a revenge mission against Marquez, or Bradley whose stock will surely rise if he beats Marquez would be a big money spinner for all concerned, especially Bob Arum.
Of course many people will still ask to see Manny Pacquiao in with Floyd Mayweather, but as I said previously this is a fight that never looked like happening whilst Bob Arum is involved, as he realises he can make more money by pitting his fighters against each other knowing he has the security of Manny Pacquiao’s cemented legacy and appeal in the midst of it to bounce his fighters off in enhancing their reputations. For all of Bob’s faults, and for all those that despise his influence on preventing the Mayweather fight, he is a smart business man, even if many people can see through his antics to stop Pacquiao vs Mayweather.
PED’s accusations regarding this fight
I had to finish off on this subject, as I have been saying for years, until there is a consistent drugs testing policy in boxing, questions will always be asked. If this topic wasn’t so serious it would be laughable, especially regarding this fight.
In the build-up this fight, we heard Freddie Roach’s comments expressing his desire to see random drugs testing used for this fight. Whether Roach was saying this seriously or to get in the heads of the Marquez camp remains to be seen, but despite Heredia’s claims on the 24/7 series that they would be happy with random testing, it was never used. Bob Arum claimed nobody asked him to set up the random testing for this fight, so who is to blame? If you ask me, everybody can share the blame and here is why:
If Roach and his camp were concerned about Marquez’s size why not insist on drug testing when the negotiations took place to ensure everything is done fairly, especially how rumours circulated before fight number 3, and the presence of Angel Heredia in the Marquez camp.
Hindsight is a wonderful thing, it is easy for Marquez’s camp to turn round half way through the camp and after the fight and say we would have done the testing, but they would have been aware from fight three that accusations were floating around, so could they have took a stand and say “test us, let’s do it?” Quite possibly, but then again, with the history regarding Manny Pacquiao and random drugs testing, is it their place to do that if they are not suspicious of their opponent? You decide!
Bob Arum… now he has been very vocal over the last three years regarding the drugs testing issue. Espeically how the Pacquiao camp refused random drug testing with Floyd Mayweather for so long, then to claim in the media they are now ready to do it. Ask yourself this question, if they are ready to do random drugs testing for the Mayweather fight, why are they not using the method in the other fights involving Manny Pacquiao. Surely this would have been a good way for Arum and Team Pacquiao to make a statement to Mayweather “hey Floyd, we are using this system, we are waiting for you” but they haven’t, so that raises the question were they ever intending to use random testing for the Mayweather fight?
With the refusal to use the random drug testing for Mayweather and in other Pacquiao fights in recent times, it rally left Bob Arum in a bit of a pickle. We now have an opponent in Marquez that people suspect of illegal substance use, but what can Bob do about it? Use that testing for the first time and go back on everything he said previously? How hypocritical would it look if he tried to order Marquez to use that testing when he stated previously that Mayweather would not call the shots. So really Bob’s hands were tied, does he be hypocritical, does he back down from a stance he has taken for 3 years, or does he save face and allow his prized asset to go in with a man who people suspect to be on drugs. Maybe the possibility of a Marquez win opening up all these money spinning ideas was too good to risk.
Let me leave you with these final thoughts since people are questioning the size and strength of Marquez…
Juan Manuel Marquez accomplished this in his third fight at Welterweight, not his first. Marquez weighed 142lbs in his previous two fights at Welterweight, and 143lbs on this occasion. Is it not possible that over the last 15 months he has worked enormously on his strength? Of course it is possible.
Manny Pacquiao came from 134lbs to 142 to batter and stop Oscar De La Hoya in his first fight at Welterweight. Marquez came from 134lbs to 142lbs vs Floyd Mayweather in 2009 and had nowhere near the power, or speed. He came from 138lbs and 140lbs in fights 3 and 4 respectively against Pacquiao, so how can people accuse Marquez of drug use, but vilify Floyd Mayweather’s camp for making accusations of Pacquiao for gaining MORE weight to stop De La Hoya?
Oh maybe because Pacquiao is a bigger puncher than Marquez? Well it would seem so, but checking stats, who has the bigger KO percentage and who has more knockouts? That’s right folks, it’s Juan Manuel Marquez.
Why have we not seen this power before from Marquez? Well 40 knockouts (higher than Pacquiao) is not to be sneezed at. Maybe the reason we never seen it in his first fight at Welterweight vs Floyd Mayweather could be due to the fact he could barely lay a glove on Mayweather. It could also be due to the fact that maybe he was not adjusted or comfortable with the weight at that time. Why not in the third fight with Pacquiao? Who knows, maybe just maybe he was intimidated by Pacquiao’s speed and evident power up at welterweight considering in his previous fight vs Mayweather at welterweight he did not perform well so maybe this affected him mentally and did not want to get tagged often at that weight. After that fight it is quite possible that Marquez’s fear of the speed and power up at the weight had gone and felt easier in opening up, letting his hands go and decided to take chances, which he did and seen himself on his backside also.