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Weight gain will add power to Pacquiao’s punch–trainer

By Roy Luarca
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 02:29:00 09/17/2008

Filed Under: Pacquiao, Boxing

MANILA, Philippines?Manny Pacquiao?s power is proportionate to his weight. As he gains poundage, so does the wallop of his punches.

Strength and conditioning coach Alex Ariza reportedly made the discovery during his stint at Pacquiao?s training camp in June, when the Filipino ring icon challenged and eventually beat David Diaz for the World Boxing Council lightweight crown.

Ariza, who also monitored Pacquiao?s nutrition, power and speed from Day One of training up to fight night in Las Vegas, affirmed that Pacquiao is endowed with superior strength.

And, unlike before when Pacquiao?s killer punches emanated mostly from the left, both hands now wield lethal power capable of knocking out even a heavyweight boxer.

In a Pacland Forum post Tuesday, Ariza supposedly measured Pacquiao?s power at the start of camp when the four-division champion weighed between 147 and 150 pounds.

The finding startled Ariza, who?d worked with other boxers, and turned him into an instant believer of Pacquiao?s widely recognized brutal power.

But as the training progressed, Ariza also made another startling finding: Pacquiao?s strength declines as he loses weight.

Fact is, in the same post, Ariza supposedly noticed that from being a heavy banger Pacquiao turned into a light hitter after the weigh-in, when he tipped the scales at 134.5 pounds. Expectedly, the decline in power of his developed right was even more pronounced.

Ariza, of course, can?t explain what happened in-between, when Pacquiao slowly stuffed himself with nutritious food, vitamins and drinks before he fought and knocked out Diaz in the ninth round.

Ariza merely concluded that Pacquiao is more dangerous if he doesn?t lose weight during training.

And since Pacquiao is slated to fight Oscar De La Hoya at 147 pounds on Dec. 6, he no longer needs to go on diet because he normally weighs 144-147 pounds.

Ariza may be at a loss to describe the phenomenon of losing and regaining power, but the explanation may have come from Pacquiao himself.

In an interview made before his WBC junior lightweight title fight against Juan Manuel Marquez early this year, Pacquiao likened himself to a sponge.

He can shrink fast, but also bulk up fast.

Against De La Hoya, Pacquiao needs to be just his natural speedy, deadly self.

Meanwhile, Pacquiao arrived in Los Angeles Sunday night to begin his long and arduous preparation for his megabuck bout against De La Hoya.

As always, Pacquiao will train at the Wild Card Gym of celebrated trainer Freddie Roach in Hollywood.

Pacquiao will also take time off to help promote the 12-round fight, a sure sell-out at the MGM Grand Grand Arena in Las Vegas and a certain pay-per-view blockbuster.

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