Ex-lightweight king Mancini confident Pacquiao will win, but still warns of Thurman’s power
LAS VEGAS—Keith Thurman has fought only once a year since 2016 plus add the fact that he was sidelined for 22 months before he made his ring return in a lackluster performance against Josesito Lopez last January where he settled for a majority decision.
And that inactivity could haunt Thurman in his most significant and toughest battle yet against Manny Pacquiao on Saturday.
“This is the second fight of Keith Thurman in two years, this ain’t the guy you wanna come back against. Manny ain’t the guy you wanna fight if you haven’t fought regularly,” Ray Mancini, the former lightweight king in the 1980s, said Thursday.
Mancini also didn’t spare Pacquiao from a possible dangerous disposition come fight night where his age could suddenly show.
“Keith is probably the hardest puncher in the division. I always said every fighter grows old in one night if this is the night—which I don’t see for Manny—but if it is, this is the guy you don’t wanna grow old against,” he said.
With all things taken into account, Mancini still has the 40-year-old Pacquiao winning.
“Overall, I think Manny is gonna look sharp. He’s still at the top of his game so I think he will come out victorious. I don’t know how but I think it’s gonna be a stoppage somewhere along the way.”