Super claims for superfight | Inquirer Sports
Bare Eye

Super claims for superfight

/ 03:54 AM April 30, 2015

Upon arrival in fight site Las Vegas, Manny Pacquiao yesterday soothed over-anxious fans with a cheerful claim and a bold assurance.

He asked over a thousand admirers who flocked to the Mandalay Bay Convention Center to cool it and relax.

“I’m sure to win this fight [inside the ring],” Pacquiao announced with the firmness of a ruler issuing a decree.

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While trainer Freddie Roach has been touting since Day 1 that Pacquiao would surely conquer the unbeaten Floyd Mayweather Jr. this weekend, it was the first time the Filipino boxing superhero has blithely claimed he has no doubt about winning at the Las Vegas MGM Grand on May 2.

It was not a prediction. Pacquiao claimed victory ahead of the superfight as a statement of fact.

Not that his fans back home needed that super claim, but Pacquiao was also quite aware how practically all his countrymen, mainly those who live below the poverty level, have invested their dreams and hopes on him.

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Many market place fans of Pacquiao would in fact dismiss, often shabbily, any doubt about him scoring a victory.

The sentiment and preference in other places of work and life were no less different.

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“Mayweather is an OK defensive fighter, me isasabay ba siya, can he stand it once Manny rains fiery punches all over him,” asked elite painter Antonio Austria from his cool, tree-shrouded studio on A. Bonifacio, San Juan.

Sir Tony, who says he would watch the bout on free TV, plans to work on a commissioned canvas in between lengthy commercials.

“Baka Ma-weather-beaten kalaban,” he quipped.

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Anyway, it’s worth noting what conditioning coach Justin Fortune stated two days back that Pacquiao “will destroy Mayweather without letup from the 9th to 12th round.”

Fortune pointed to Pacquiao’s incredible conquest, with an average of 54 minutes, of the snaking 8-km ascent and descent of the steeper Bronson Canyon route around the Griffith Park, thereby leaving behind more experienced runners.

However, upon hearing this super claim, one stray pundit took time out to say Pacquiao could be fantastically swift he might end up missing his actual target.

“It’s not a marathon title they would be disputing,” said the observer, adding many of Team Pacquiao’s loud claims bordered on the unrealistic.

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Later after Pacquiao’s reception, Mayweather, a 2-1 favorite, showed up before a bigger festive gathering at the MGM Grand Garden.

He did not have to soothe or assure nervous fans the way Pacquiao had to earlier in the day.

“Everybody’s game plan is to come forward with a lot of punches,” Mayweather said. “It hasn’t worked after 19 years and 47 fights.”

Mayweather said he respects Pacquiao, a strong and fantastic athlete.

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“But he is reckless, while I am a complete, calculating competitor,” Mayweather tried to make it clear.

TAGS: pacquiao vs mayweather column, Pacquiao vs. Mayweather, Sports

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