Pacman seeks short fight with Marquez
‘I need a Knockout’By Roy Luarca
Philippine Daily Inquirer
Having gone the full route in his last five fights, Manny Pacquiao knows he’ll have to find a shortcut when he wages a fourth battle with old rival Juan Manuel Marquez on Dec. 8.
“I want to make this fight short,” Pacquiao told ESPN.go.com. Monday (Tuesday in Manila). “I want to knock him out.”
Fans are pining for the hungry, angry, feisty Pacquiao who used to stop opponents with combinations or one-shot sledgehammers.
And Marquez remains an irritant, claiming that he won all their first three bouts which actually ended in a draw and then a split and majority decision for Pacquiao.
Trainer Freddie Roach believes Pacquiao has all the tools and the skills to finally put Marquez on the canvas for good. It’s Pacquiao’s refined ring demeanor that worries Roach no end.
“I don’t want the nice Manny Pacquiao, touching gloves with the other guy and everything,” said Roach, perhaps recalling Pacquiao’s fight with Shane Mosley last year when they touched gloves more than 20 times.
Pacquiao heard him loud and clear.
“I want to be the other Manny Pacquiao, like when I was 24, 25 years old,” Pacquiao said during the kickoff of their promotional tour at Beverly Hills in Los Angeles, insisting that the hunger to fight and win is still there.
For starters, Pacquiao decided to train full time at Roach’s Wild Card Gym in Hollywood for the welterweight bout set at MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada.
There will be no title at stake, but Pacquiao’s reward (a guaranteed purse of $23 million plus) will be much higher than what the eight-division world champion stood to get if he opted for a rematch with Timothy Bradley, surprise winner of their battle for the WBO welterweight title last June 9.
Conceding that Marquez is technically better, Roach said the key is for Pacquiao to outfight the Mexican four-division world champion.
“I want to make it a slugfest,” Roach told latimes.com. “Manny has knocked this guy down four times. If he wants to be the No. 1 guy in the sport, he needs a knockout.”
Pacquiao agreed, scribbling “I need a knockout” on a piece of paper he handed to Roach.