I don’t usually write about sports but after the controversial results of Manny Pacquiao-Juan Miguel Marquez fight earlier today, I could not help but roll my eyes at what promoters are willing to do just to score a quick buck. In Manny’s post fight interview, amid a mineral water bottle throwing incident (did anybody get that?), Top Rank promoter Arum breached the idea that there could be another slugfest between the two boxers to put to rest once and for all the nigging doubts on the veracity of Pacman’s victory.
It was true that I was worried about the results before the judges gave Manny the victory, via majority decision. But I believe that Marquez, despite his excellent showing in the beginning, was not aggressive enough to knock Manny out. Pacquiao, on the other hand, had the power to do so, but used the earlier rounds simply evading Marquez’s attacks and being content to exchange punches with the Mexican counter puncher.
While the match was not by any stretch of the imagination, a showstopper, it was still a good one in my book because both athletes showed respect for the skills of one another, playing smart and not giving in to the jeers of the crowd. Marquez’s game has improved greatly and his technique proved to be a match against Manny’s strength and speed, while Manny on the other hand showed great maturity by looking for opportunities to throw combinations and launching flurries that are not at all comparable to any of his earlier fights.
In the end, it was Manny who gained the favor of the judges who awarded him a majority decision win. The outcome was still controversial, as as with the first two matches, but it was a match backed by statistics, if not the crowd.
As per official CompuBox computation for Pacquiao-Marquez III:
Pacquiao = 578 punches connecting 176
Marquez= 436 punches connecting 138
Pacquiao = 274 power punches connecting 117
Marquez = 254 power punches connecting100
Pacquiao = 304 jabs connecting 59
Marquez = 182 jabs connecting 38
This may not have been the type of ending I would expect but so far, while both boxers have improved significantly, they seem to return to the same form when they face off with one another, leading me to the conclusion that if they decide to fight again, I will not be seeing anything new. Same old strategies and defenses — so I would rather they move on from the trilogy and fight other boxers. They may be great warriors but I’ve had about enough of these two for now. Besides, if they do a fourth, they would be obligated to do a fifth, and this cycle may last well until both boxers decide to retire.