Saturday, May 18, 2013

Manny Pacquiao appears to have been on a downward career spiral since his third fight with Juan Manuel Marquez in November of 2011 in a fight that pretty much the entire world saw Pacquiao losing, but yet he was still give a victory by the judges.

Since that fight, Pacquiao has lost his last two fights to Tim Bradley and Marquez, and things are starting to look desperate for the Filipino.

His promoter Bob Arum resisted the notion that Pacquiao needed a tune-up fight to make sure that he’s still able to take a heavy shot following his brutal 6th round knockout loss to Marquez last December.

Arum saw no point in a tune-up for Pacquiao; hence that’s why Pacquiao is fighting Brandon Rios on November 23rd in Macau. China.

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It’s an incredibly risky thing to do in my view, and reminds me a little of how Antonio Margarito was put in with Miguel Cotto in December 2011 after Margarito hadn’t fought in over a year and was coming off of three separate eye surgeries.

I still don’t know why Arum didn’t have a tune-up bout for Margarito to see if his eye could take the wear and tear of a fight because putting him in with Cotto after three eye surgeries and no tune-ups seemed to be a recipe for disaster for Margarito.

Related Story : Manny Pacquiao Accused of Assaulting Political Official and Vote-Buying

We already know what happened in the Cotto-Margarito 2nd fight. Margarito’s surgically operated on right eye swelled shut and it cost him the fight.

Now we have Pacquiao going into a tough fight with Rios without a tune-up after having been knocked unconscious by Marquez last December. It doesn’t look like a smart thing for Pacquiao to do, and I’m wondering why he doesn’t want a tune-up. It’s not just Arum and Pacquiao who feel he doesn’t need a tune-up.

Pacquiao’s trainer Freddie Roach also doesn’t see any point in Pacquiao taking a tune-up bout. If Pacquiao goes out there and looks great and destroys Rios, then all of them will be looked at as geniuses. But if Pacquiao goes out there and gets knocked cold by Rios, then boxing fans will wonder why Arum and Roach didn’t have Pacquiao fight a tune-up bout to see if he could still take a shot without hitting the deck hard.

I think if Pacquiao gets knocked out in this fight with Rios then he’s going to need to consider retirement because that would be his second straight knockout loss, and I doubt he’s going to want to sit idle for another 11 months before fights again.


Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Manny Pacquiao's boxing career may be on the downturn after consecutive losses, but his political career could be in danger as well, as Pac-Man is being accused of assaulting an official and using his considerable wealth to buy votes.

According to Jerry Adlaw of The Manila Times, Pacquiao allegedly attacked a barangay chairman by the name of Alfredo Belgica on Saturday night in General Santos City, Philippines. Pacquiao, who is seeking reelection as a representative for the Sarangani province, was reportedly delivering rice and cash to voters in the area prior to the incident.

Adlaw reports that Pacquiao and his bodyguards allegedly beat Belgica "almost to a pulp" after he tried to stop them from making deliveries. Belgica claims that Pacquiao and his entourage attacked him after he threatened to file charges against Pacquiao for buying votes.

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According to Adlaw, however, General Santos City is not part of Pacquiao's constituency. Rather than campaigning for himself, Pac-Man was helping friend Ronnel Rivera, who is running for mayor in the area.

Pacquiao was reportedly allowed to leave the police station after being brought in for investigation. He was never questioned, according to Adlaw, and it remains to be seen what punishment, if any, is handed down to the former eight-division world champion.

Related :Tecate Ties in Garcia vs. Juanma with Pacquiao vs. Rios

According to Dan Rafael of ESPN, Pacquiao is scheduled to fight Brandon Rios in Macau on Nov. 24.

It is unclear if Pacquiao's incident in the Philippines will have any effect on his upcoming bout. Also, it will be interesting to see how or if it will influence the voters. Pacquiao is obviously a hero in the Philippines, but this situation certainly reflects poorly on him as a politician.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

It doesn’t take much motivation or marketing to get fans interested in the June 15 featherweight showdown between Miguel Angel ‘Mikey’ Garcia and Juan Manuel ‘JuanMa’ Lopez. The bout – which takes place at the American Airlines Center in Dallas and will air live on HBO – already has boxing fans buzzing about its potential as a Fight of the Year candidate.

That won’t allow the event’s handlers and leading sponsor to allow the promotion to run on auto-pilot. Quite the contrary, as Top Rank and Tecate have found a new way to promote the show while also enticing fans about another event down the road – and on the other side of the world.

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“Tecate is a great, great sponsor of boxing,” acknowledged Hall of Fame promoter Bob Arum of his long time promotional ally. “To tie in June 15 with an event we’re having in Macao on November 23 – Manny Pacquiao against Brandon Rios - Tecate is going to organize (a raffle).

“Anyone can sign up, and there will be a drawing on June 15. The winner will get a roundtrip (ticket) for two from Dallas to Hong Kong/Macao and two ringside tickets to the fight, plus a hotel stay at the beautiful Venetian Macao. No purchase will be necessary.”

Related :Pacquiao vs. Rios To Have USADA Drug Testing

Details will come in future promotional sweepstakes commercials.

The November event in Macao will mark Pacquiao’s first fight back since suffering a one-punch knockout in his epic fourth fight with Juan Manuel Marquez last December in Las Vegas. The Filipino legend has lost two straight after going more than seven years without a defeat.

Rios also comes in on the heels of a loss, dropping a decision to Mike Alvarado in a fever-pitched rematch this past March. He will also be moving up in weight for the fall showdown, his first fight outside of the United States.

The winner of the drawing will be announced on fight night prior to Garcia and Lopez stepping into the ring. Garcia makes the first defense of the featherweight belt he acquired from Orlando Salido earlier this year.

Salido won the belt from Lopez, knocking him out in eight rounds in 2011. He repeated the feat less than a year later, this time stopping the Puerto Rican southpaw in ten rounds.

Lopez served a suspension for accusations made towards the referee following the loss, but has since returned to the ring and is coming off of a tune-up win last month in Mexico.

Michael Koncz, adviser to eight division world champion Manny Pacquiao, has exclusively confirmed to that USADA [US Anti-Doping Agency] will regulate a random drug testing protocol for the upcoming fight with Brandon Rios, scheduled to take place on November 24th [November 23rd in the United States] at the Venetian in Macau, China. Pacquiao (54-5-2, 38KOs) vs. Rios (31-1-1, 23KOs) will be carried by HBO Pay-Per-View.

Koncz indicates that his team requested the testing protocol.

"Yes, I can confirm that we requested the USADA testing. We've never had anything to hide nor do we have anything to hide now," Koncz stated exclusively to

Pacquiao is coming off a devastating sixth round knockout loss to Juan Manuel Marquez last December. Marquez was trained by controversial strength and conditioning coach Angel "Memo" Heredia.

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Because Marquez, at 39-years-old, appeared to be in the best shape of his life with a newfound muscular body, and because of the sheer brutal nature of his victory - rumors quickly spread that Marquez was potentially using performance enhancing drugs.

In fact, the rumors began to surface before the fourth Pacquiao fight even took place. Marquez was often questioned on the subject and he was very firm that his muscular was the direct result of Heredia's tough training regimen.

Related :Pacquiao vs. Rios: Brandon could give Manny more than he bargained for

Rios, trained by Robert Garcia, is now working with Heredia.

Koncz indicates that Heredia's working relationship with Rios is not the reason for the involvement of USADA in this fight.

"We just want to give the fans a clean fight and avoid any type of speculation or accusations once this fight is done," Koncz said.

Random drug testing was often the sticking point in finalizing a potential mega-fight between Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather Jr. The two sides were eventually able to agree on a testing protocol, but unfortunately the monetary split between the two fighters became an even bigger issue in making a deal.

Source :
Manny Pacquiao (54-5-2, 38 KO’s) hasn’t had an easy fight since his one-sided 12 round unanimous decision win over a completely shot Shane Mosley two years ago in May, 2011. Since that fight, Pacquiao has gone downhill himself and looked bad in his two fights against Juan Manuel Marquez and his fight with Tim Bradley. Pacquiao lost two of those fights, but you can make strong argument that he deserved to lose three of them because his win over Marquez in November 2011 was a controversial one. Pacquiao now will be fighting Brandon Rios (31-1-1, 23 KO’s) on November 24th in Macau, China.

Rios isn’t the type of fighter you want to be taking on when you’ve looked as bad as Manny has in his last the fights. He’s someone that has a good chance of continuing Pacquiao’s losing streak by giving him another tough fight and then possibly knocking him out. I’m guessing Pacquiao’s promoter Bob Arum is counting on Pacquiao being able to come back from his loss to Marquez and looking like the old Pacquiao from years ago.

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I’m not so sure if that’s possible at this point. It’s one way streak with aging in the sport of boxing, and the way that Pacquiao looked in the Bradley and Marquez fights, he just doesn’t like the same fighter. It’s strange because Pacquiao didn’t take much punishment in his win over Mosley, but in his next fight against Marquez, Pacquiao looked like a shell of his former self.

It’s possible that he’d been slipping for a while and his deterioration had been covered up with the soft fights Arum had put him in with an over the hill Antonio Margarito, Joshua Clottey, who didn’t throw many punches, and with Mosley. Whatever the case, Pacquiao hasn’t looked good since his win Miguel Cotto in 2009. That’s long time ago, and Marquez kind of exposed how badly Pacquiao has slid.

Related : Manny Pacquiao vs. Brandon Rios: Would Win Restore Pac-Man to Superstar Status?

Rios could very well really dominate Pacquiao and knock him out even quicker than Marquez did. Rios won’t shy away from contact with Pacquiao and he’s going to be really nailing him. Pacquiao can’t get out of the way of shots like he used to, not that he was ever a good fighter defensively. But he’s getting hit a lot more and not reacting well to the shots he’s getting hit with.

Against Bradley, Pacquiao looked like he couldn’t fight hard for more than a fraction of each round without needing rest breaks. That’s not good if he fights like that against Rios because he won’t let Pacquiao get any rest.

Monday, May 6, 2013

Manny Pacquiao vs. Brandon Rios

Manny Pacquiao has his mind back on his business.

He is getting back in the ring in late November with an eye toward regaining his past glory in the boxing ring. He will take on hard-punching Brandon Rios (31-1-1) in Macau, China (per Kevin Iole of Yahoo! Sports).

Pacquiao, a Filipino native, is a huge name throughout Asia. The fight will be the first available to Chinese viewers on pay-per-view.

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While the venture has the potential to change the parameters of the way high-profile boxing matches are sold, it's all about regaining traction in his career for Pacquiao.

While there are no doubts about his popularity and charisma, Pacquiao has been tagged with losses in his last two fights.

Related:Manny Pacquiao vs. Brandon Rios: Would Win Restore Pac-Man to Superstar Status?

The first was a split-decision loss to Timothy Bradley last June that most observers felt was a brutal outcome, but the second was a sixth-round knockout suffered at the hands of Juan Manuel Marquez.

These last two losses make this fight pivotal for Pacquiao (54-5-2). While there is no three-strikes-and-you're-out rule in boxing, if Pac-Man were to lose a third straight fight at the age of 34, it might be pointless for him to continue with his boxing career.

However, if he were to take on the hard-charging Rios, 27, and knock him out or beat him decisively, that would elevate Pacquiao to a level where he would be ranked among the best fighters in the world once again.

Pacquiao almost certainly has designs on fighting Floyd Mayweather before either fighter hangs up his gloves for good

An impressive win over Rios could be enough to put him on track for that fight once again.

Related: Manny Pacquiao-Brandon Rios set

There are no guarantees that Pacquiao would get that fight, but a solid win would at least put him in the discussion for it once again.

Pacquiao was not completely off his game in either the Bradley fight or his fourth fight against Marquez. Bradley did very little offensively, and Pacquiao was the fighter who was dishing out most of the punishment.

Pacquiao also was faring quite well against Marquez until he got careless late in the sixth round. After suffering an early knockdown, Pacquiao had basically turned the fight around. He registered his own knockdown and was getting the best of Marquez in the sixth round as he delivered a series of hard punches.

Shortly before the end of the round, it was as if Pacquiao believed Marquez could no longer hurt him. That temporary loss of respect for his opponent caused Pacquiao to wade in and look for a knockout shot of his own.

Before he could throw that punch, he was in Marquez's wheelhouse. The Mexican fighter threw a perfect straight right hand that landed directly on Pacquiao's chin. He was knocked out before he hit the canvas.

Rios is an aggressive fighter who will come straight at Pacquiao. If Rios can avoid taking punishment, he could prove to be a very dangerous opponent. He has knocked out 23 fighters

Pacquiao has to show he can avoid absorbing big hits. His hand speed and aggressiveness have not been in question in his last two fights; his ability to avoid a big shot is now an issue after getting knocked out by the powerful Marquez.

Rios is a good fighter, but he has not proved to be a great one. He lost a decision to Mike Alvarado in March. Alvarado got revenge after suffering a technical knockout to Rios in December.

Rios should be available for Pacquiao to hit. Rios likes to stay in the pocket and is willing to eat a couple of shots in order to deliver one of his own.

Pacquiao has always been the same kind of fighter who is not afraid to mix it up with his opponent if it will allow him a chance to deliver hard and damaging punches of his own. His experience and skill set should give him a nice advantage in this fight.

Related:Manny Pacquiao Will Fight Brandon Rios in November

But Pacquiao must show he can avoid Rios' hard punches. If he can, he should be able to punish a fighter who is not overly evasive.

A big win in this fight should put him back among the best fighters in the business and return him to superstar status.

Anything else could prove quite damaging.

Manny Pacquiao will look to break a two-fight losing streak when he returns to the ring on Nov. 24 (Nov. 23 in the U.S.) at The Venetian in Macau, China, to fight Brandon Rios in a 12-round welterweight bout, Pacquiao adviser Michael Koncz exclusively told Yahoo! Sports on Monday.

The bout will be distributed on HBO pay-per-view in the U.S. Significantly, though, Koncz said it is going to be sold online in China in something of a test run for the American equivalent of $5 or $6.

Pacquiao had also been considering Mike Alvarado, but Koncz said the choice to go with Rios was made because of the style matchup. Rios is a straight-ahead fighter who loves to get into a slugfest and it should make for a sensational television bout.

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"Rios isn't going to get in there and dance around and run around," Koncz said. "He's going to come to fight. He'll move straight forward and try to brawl with Manny, and that's the kind of fight that will be very entertaining for the fans. Anyone who knows these two guys knows there's really no other way for them to fight."

Related: Manny Pacquiao Will Fight Brandon Rios in November

It will be Pacquiao's first bout since Dec. 8, when he was knocked out late in the sixth round by a crushing right hand in his fourth fight against Juan Manuel Marquez. Pacquiao was interested in a fifth bout with Marquez, but Marquez didn't have the same interest.

Marquez will fight Timothy Bradley Jr., a bout now tentatively set for Sept. 14 at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas. However, Floyd Mayweather Jr. said he also plans to fight on that date, at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, and if he does, Top Rank will move the Marquez-Bradley fight to another date.

Pacquiao remains one of boxing's biggest stars, both at the gate and via pay-per-view. He's extraordinarily popular in Asia. Casino operators throughout the region were hoping to land a Pacquiao fight. He appeals to many of the high-rolling Asian gamblers, who would come out in bigger numbers than they traditionally do for a Pacquiao fight in Las Vegas.

Top Rank promoted a small show on April 6 at the Venetian Macao. The casino win on the night before the fight and the night of the fight was nearly 70 percent higher than normal. That win figure for two nights was more than some Las Vegas casinos win in a year, according to Top Rank chairman Bob Arum.

He said casino officials wouldn't allow him to leave without committing to another fight.

"We had a party and they insisted I bring another fight there or they said they wouldn't let me go," he said.

Related:Manny Pacquiao-Brandon Rios set

As a result, Top Rank will bring a show to the Venetian on July 27. After that show, it will take Pacquiao on a barnstorming media tour throughout Asia to promote the Rios fight.

Major League Baseball Advanced Media will distribute the online pay-per-view in China, Arum said.

"This is what I've been talking about for a while," Arum said of bringing the pay-per-view to computers and mobile devices world-wide. "Can I guarantee it's going to work? No, but this is a massive country and they're very online savvy. If we even get a small percentage [to buy], it will change the parameters of boxing forever."

Pacquiao trainer Freddie Roach said Pacquiao plans to prepare for the fight in General Santos City in the Philippines in order to avoid distractions. He said he was glad to see that Koncz and Arum opted to go for Rios over Alvarado.

"Rios is a good fighter who fights well in the pocket, but he's more hittable," Roach said. "I want to see Manny with a good performance. I think he can knock this guy out, and this guy is one of the new generation of fighters coming up. It's a fight that if he wins it, would keep Manny in the pound-for-pound Top 10 and Brandon Rios made some remarks about me a couple of years ago, so seeing him get knocked out by Manny would be some sweet revenge."

Zou will headline the July 27 card in Macau against Jose Ortega, Arum said. Also on that card will be an IBF featherweight title fight between Evgeni Gradovich against Maurcio Javier Munoz; a flyweight title fight between Juan Francisco Estrada and Milan Melindo and a heavyweight bout between Andy Ruiz and Joe Hanks.

Arum said he's also planning to do a show in Singapore after the Zou show in Macau.

Manny Pacquiao-Brandon Rios set
Former pound-for-pound king Manny Pacquiao, seeking to get his mojo back after being knocked out cold by rival Juan Manuel Marquez in December, will return to action to face brawler Brandon Rios this fall, Pacquiao adviser Michael Koncz told on Monday.

The fight, the first for Filipino icon Pacquiao outside the United States since 2006, will take place at the CotaiArena at the Venetian Macao Resort Hotel in Macau, China on Nov. 24, which is Nov. 23 in the United States.

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 The fighters have both agreed to terms and the contracts are being finalized, according to Koncz and Top Rank promoter Bob Arum. Pacquiao agreed to terms last week and Koncz, who is traveling to the Philippines to see him, said he is bringing him the paperwork. Arum said Rios agreed to terms on Monday morning.

Manny is definitely going to get his mojo back with this fight.

-- Freddie Roach, trainer for
Manny Pacquiao

Koncz said that Pacquiao will face Rios at the welterweight limit of 147 pounds in a scheduled 12-round fight that will be televised on HBO PPV in the United States.

Because of the 12-hour time difference between Macau and the United States the pay-per-view will take place in the morning in Macau for a normal primetime telecast in the U.S.

"People know what Rios brings to the table," Arum said. "People want to see a real fight and that is what you get with Rios. We're building a business in Macau and China and these are the kinds of fights -- real action fights -- that they want to see."

Rios, a former lightweight titlist, has had his last two fights at junior welterweight and split a pair of all-action battles with Mike Alvarado. Rios knocked out Alvarado in the seventh round in an October barn-burner and lost a close unanimous decision to him in a March 30 rematch, which was for a vacant interim junior welterweight title, that is the leading fight of the year candidate.

"I think it's a good match. People who watch boxing have differing views of the sport," Arum said. "Some like to see an artistic performance like Floyd Mayweather gave [against Robert Guerrero on Saturday night] and other people like to see two guys knocking the s--- out of each other. Me, I love a match when the guys go after each other and throw bombs. That's my preference. It doesn't mean it's the right preference, but this is one of those kinds of fights."

Although Rios (31-1-1, 23 KOs), 27, of Oxnard, Calif., is coming off a defeat, Pacquiao (54-5-2, 38 KOs) picked him to fight, Koncz said.

"The two fights with Alvarado were both very close fights and either guy could have won either fight," Koncz said. "We looked at styles and Rios has the better style for Manny. He'll come forward and throw a lot of punches. Whether it goes five rounds or 12 rounds, it is going to be entertaining for the fans and that is what Manny wants. Rios was Manny's choice after Marquez and [Timothy] Bradley turned it down."

Pacquiao's selection of Rios met with the approval of Hall of Fame trainer Freddie Roach, who said Pacquiao would train for six weeks in the Philippines and the final two weeks in Macau.

"Manny is definitely going to get his mojo back with this fight," Roach told "Brandon Rios likes to fight in the pocket and exchange, and Manny is very good in the pocket too. I think it'll be an exciting fight but that Manny is going to land in the pocket at some point and knock this guy out somewhere along the way. Rios likes to exchange and his style is not really difficult to figure out, so Manny's gonna hit him."

Pacquiao, who has not fought outside the United States since he returned to the Philippines for a decision win against Oscar Larios in Manila in July 2006, has officially lost two fights in a row.

Marquez badly knocked him out in the sixth round on Dec. 8 in a stunner. The action-packed fight was the 2012 fight of the year. But in his previous fight in June, Pacquiao, the only boxer to win world titles in eight weight classes, lost a split decision and his welterweight title to Bradley in a highly controversial split decision.

Koncz and Arum said Marquez and Bradley were both offered career-high purses for rematches with Pacquiao but when both turned them down, Pacquiao opted for Rios. Bradley will instead defend his welterweight belt against Marquez in the fall in Las Vegas on HBO PPV.

"After Marquez and Bradley turned down our offers, Rios was next in line and he took the fight," Koncz said. "Manny is happy to get back in the ring, so he's looking forward to this but right now his major focus is on politics.

We looked at styles and Rios has the better style for Manny. He'll come forward and throw a lot of punches. Whether it goes five rounds or 12 rounds, it is going to be entertaining for the fans and that is what Manny wants.

-- Michael Koncz, adviser to
Manny Pacquiao

Said Arum, "Bradley and Marquez preferred to fight each other and they didn't really want to go to Asia. The only one that benefits from the fight being outside the U.S. is Pacquiao because an American like Bradley still has to pay taxes in the U.S. and for Marquez still has to pay taxes in Mexico, where the rate is about the same as in the U.S. For Pacquiao it's a big deal because the tax rates in the Philippines are much lower."

Terms of the deals Pacquiao and Rios agreed to were not disclosed, but Arum said that Rios would earn "more than Robert Guerrero made to fight Floyd on Saturday night." Guerrero's purse was $3 million.

The fighters will hold news conferences in New York and Los Angeles to promote the fight, although they are not yet scheduled, and they will also go on a five-city publicity tour in China, where the fight will be the country's first major pay-per-view for a cost of what is equal to about $4 or $5 in the U.S., Arum said.

"What's gonna happen with this fight and event will be monumental from the standpoint of economics in boxing," Arum said. "We have a whole program of how to market pay-per-view in China and we're gonna go on a barnstorming tour of China. In the United States we market essentially only through cable and satellite systems but in China, where they have about 1.4 billion people, it's all on the internet, on iPhones, iPads and computers. If this thing works like we expect that it will the boxing business will never be the same."