In the Marquez-Pacquiao 4 rematch, the KO in the 6th round at the MGM Grand Casino and Hotel in Las Vegas was shocking. However, Juan Manuel Marquez knew a knockout of Manny Pacquiao, and nothing less, would make his case as the better boxer.
In its Dec. 9 report, the Los Angeles Times noted that even while Pacquiao was taken to the hospital for treatment and Marquez donned a battered and swollen nose, pundits were already talking a rematch.
The Saturday fight was being described as the modern-day “Thrilla in Manilla” (Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier). From the start, the Pacquiao vs. Marquez 4 fight sparked fireworks. But then, “Down goes Frazier,” in this instance, Manny Pacquiao.
Marquez was falling behind in score cards until he landed a shot to Manny’s temple in the third round. That blow sent him to the tarmac, but he immediately got on his feet. Then, the Mexican boxer was knocked down with a straight punch. From that point, it appeared that the fourth time around would end in misery again.
However, the Marquez-Pacquiao fight ended abruptly with a KO in the 6th round. When the smoke cleared, Manny lay face-down on the tarmac.
Juan Marquez said this after his shocking victory:
“I threw a perfect punch. I felt Manny was coming after me for a knockout in the last few rounds. I felt he could knock me down at any time. As soon as I saw my first opening I landed a hard right hand. After I knocked him down the first time in round 3) I thought I could knock him out.”
Marquez’s quest to prove he, not Pacquiao, was the best in their ring trilogy paid off heavily, in more ways than one.
While everyone knew Manny’s take from the HBO PPV bout was huge ($23M), Marquez will likely take home about $10 million or more from the fight. But even more so, his date in the ring with the Filipino champion was about retribution, something you can’t put a dollar sign on.
Their first boxing bout in 2004 ended in a draw. Then, Manny went on to win the next two rematches. The Pacquiao vs. Marquez 4 match was supposed to be their last. By all accounts, it will be and things are virtually even after the sixth-round knockout.
While a Pacquiao vs. Mayweather fight has been brewing for years, after Manny’s loss to Marquez Saturday and his June loss to Timothy Bradley it may not be in the cards. Some buzz is even out there that the Filipino boxer may hang up his gloves and retire.
Obviously, from his performance at the MGM Grand, he has lost his dominance. The fact that he fell to an opponent six-years younger doesn’t help his case for continuing on in pursuit of an unquestionable legacy.
However, if he still has an inkling of a thought about taking on Floyd Mayweather, Jr., his technical strategy in the ring needs a revisit.
Forbes suggests that Manny and Floyd are still the biggest two fighters in the game. While Pacquiao is eyeing a run for president in his country, his camp said he may stay in the ring for one or two more years.
Did the Marquez-Pacquiao KO in the 6th round signal an end to Manny’s career or proves that anyone can get a lucky shot in on any given day?
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