After Sergio Martinez knocked out Paul Williams with a single punch to keep his world middleweight title, promoter Lou DiBella suggested Manny Pacquiao would be too scared to step up one more division to face the Argentinian boxer.
That’s a bit unfair.
There is no reason for Pacquiao to step up to middleweight (unless he wants to). If he keeps stepping up, he’ll eventually run into somebody who is simply too strong for him.
Anyway, the only fight for Pacman is Floyd Mayweather.
South African Hekkie Budler, who boasts some pythons and an anaconda for household pets, steps up in class when he takes on Filipino Juanito Rubillar in Johannesburg on February 27.
Rubillar, a compatriot of Manny Pacquiao, is an experienced campaigner with 68 fights in total, having won 48, lost 13 and drawn seven.
At 32 he is 11 years older than Budler, who comes with an unblemished record of 13 wins, five by stoppage.
On the other hand, the only Filipino fighters to beat South Africans are Pacquiao (against Lehlohonolo Ledwaba) and Nonito Donaire (against Moruti Mthalane).
Local fight critics will tell you that Budler has flaws and could be too wet behind the ears for a fighter of Rubillar’s calibre. Rubillar’s best years appear to be behind him, but at his peak he was a tough world title contender. However, he has lost three of his last five fights, two of them by stoppage.
They are fighting for the marginal IBO’s vacant junior-flyweight title.
Who do you think will win?
Manny Pacquiao will easily beat Floyd Mayweather jnr when – or if – they fight.
At least that’s what this poll shows (see below). Exactly 80% of respondents are tipping Pacman to beat Pretty Boy, with 64% even predicting the Filipino superstar to win inside the distance.
Only 18% think Mayweather will emerge victorious, of whom just 6% are tipping a stoppage triumph for the American.
Mayweather fans will undoubtedly poo-poo the poll results, but keep in mind that for the Pacquiao v Miguel Cotto showdown, 91% of 8,656 respondents polled had picked Pacquiao to win. An incredible 84% chose him to win by stoppage – I thought they were being optimistic, but they turned out to be absolutely correct.
Of course, democracy doesn’t always mean the right choice because once again. I reckon it would be a close fight.
Rumours have surfaced suggesting that Manny Pacquiao is having an affair with a starlet.
This is surely the business of only himself, his wife and the third party. Hopefully the children will be shielded from this potential mess.
I must admit that it’s not morally great for married people to have affairs, but it seems to happen a lot on this planet – whether you’re famous or not. And Pacquiao is famous – world famous. That’s why this story has landed in the public domain.
But the rumours shouldn’t dent Pacquiao’s reputation. According to one biography I read, Muhammad Ali was a lothario of note – and look at the legend he is today.
It had to happen.
Floyd Mayweather jnr has come out with his jaw blazing, taunting Filipino superstar Manny Pacquiao and his trainer, Freddie Roach. Read More…
Kaka is a colleague of mine, and I must admit he’s one of the more knowledgeable boxing fans I know.
And when he makes a prediction, you should listen. Kaka is tipping Miguel Cotto to beat Manny Pacquiao. His reasoning is simple: Pacquiao is going a bridge too far against a good, strong boxer like Cotto.
Whether you agree with Kaka or not, you’ve got to admire his conviction – he’s already bet my other colleague, Archie, to a lunch. The last time they bet – when Floyd Mayweather fought Ricky Hatton – poor Archie had to cough up.
Archie’s worried that he’ll be buying lunch for Kaka next week.
Trainer Freddie Roach has said he’s bet $1,000 on Manny Pacquiao to KO Miguel Cotto in rounds one, nine and 10.
I hope that $1,000 is small change to Roach, because if it isn’t, then it could spell trouble.
If Roach desperately needs to win that bet, it could well take his eye off the ball in the fight. Imagine if the fight is really even going into the 10th and Roach tells Pacquiao to go balls to the wall for a KO – and he gets nailed himself?
And if $1,000 is chicken feed to Roach, and if he wins the bet, then I hope he donates the winnings to a worthy Filipino charity. Actually, I’m sure he would do that.
Jake La Motta, the world middleweight champion from 1949 to 1951 whose life story was immortalised in the movie Raging Bull, reckons there are no stand-out boxers today.
That may be a bitter pill for fans of fighters like Floyd Mayweather, Manny Pacquiao and Miguel Cotto, but it’s an interesting view coming from a great who is now 88.
“Nobody stands out any more,” he told Reuters in an interview recently. “Maybe there’s a lull in the business. There hasn’t been anyone outstanding for a long time.”
Of course, there are many people – mostly old-timers – who would agree that boxing has slipped over the years.
I’m one of them, but equally, I’m looking forward to November 14.
The comparison between Manny Pacquiao and Bruce Lee has sparked much debate.
One reader sent in urls for two YouTube clips showing both men working out on punch bags.
They’re interesting to watch, although I’m not convinced it’s fair to compare the two men based on this footage – Pacquiao’s balance is better in my opinion, but I have an eye for boxing, not martial arts.
Check them out for yourself and then vote in the poll below!