Now an underdog, Mr. Thurman is left guessing
There are those who believe Keith Thurman was initially pegged a favorite over Manny Pacquiao due to the manner he had sharply undermined the legendary fighting Filipino senator.
Home fans, mainly out in the street and the marketplace, have been awed and jolted by the menacing low regard Thurman had for Pacquiao.
A natural welterweight, Thurman found Pacquiao small for the division (“short arms like a T-Rex dinosaur”), and readily bragged he would crucify and retire his 40-year-old opponent in their July 20 encounter.
Thurman, 30, was enjoying the ride. He was having a field day belittling Pacquiao—until reality took over.
Latest info from bookmakers in and around Las Vegas say Pacquiao has been installed the new favorite in the WBA welterweight unification championship.
Himself speaking, Hall of Fame trainer Freddie Roach had wondered why Thurman, in the first place, dared to take on Pacquiao.
Roach said Thurman was terrible in his last fight—“I thought I was watching a four-round fighter.”
Majority of those who had witnessed that Thurman struggle against the underdog Josesito Lopez in January were also surprised how the WBA “super” champ was rated an early favorite.
Unlike the visibly faded Thurman, Pacquiao was nothing short of sensational in his last two fights.
Thurman, going against Lopez, looked every inch a creaky repaired aspirant who still had to recover from a two-year lay-off caused by injuries.
Now, there are those who also suspect Thurman’s elevation as early favorite was all part of the selling process used by Premier Boxing Champions (PBC).
Pacquiao, sensational in training at the Wild Card gym, had opted to disregard Thurman’s rude taunts by letting “him sell the fight.”
But came a new turn from trainer Freddie Roach, who swore an agitated Pacquiao becomes fiercer and doubly motivated against an opponent he dislikes.
Will it be an angry Pacquiao or a cunning and patient veteran warrior Thurman will be fighting in his first pay-per-view appearance?
Another thing that should baffle Thurman is Pacquiao’s rigid and seemingly unplanned attacks.
Does Pacquiao also use his blazing firepower to serve as defense?
It may be too late before Thurman realizes unpredictability is the core of Pacquiao’s nameless fury that has catapulted him to legendary superstardom.
There’s no such thing as a lucky punch in the Pacquiao arsenal.
Nothing has changed. Thurman said he’s going to knock out and dismantle Pacquiao.