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List of Articles by Edwin G. Espejo



PACQUIAO WATCH: SLAY him Manny

By Edwin G. Espejo
PhilBoxing.com
03 Dec 2008



This will probably be my last piece before I will again pound the keyboard of my still serviceable desktop for the result of the Dream Match between Manny Pacquiao and Oscar dela Hoya.

Like my friend eminent photojournalist Bobby Timonera, working on the desktop is still the most relaxing, stimulating and trusted piece of equipment ever invented for anyone who likes to churn out stories – real or fantasy.

Laptops are handy but it makes your neck stiff and your back ache pounding the not so friendly keyboard.

So what brought the desktop and laptops in this piece about Manny and his date with destiny?

It is the keyboards, stupid.

And there are several keys for Manny to score a monumental upset against the bigger, taller and stronger Oscar dela Hoya.

Pound the S key. Speed, stamina and strength. It is crucial for Manny to maintain his frenetic pace even when not engaging Oscar in close combat. Let Oscar earn every million he will take home by boxing 3/1 (three full minutes every round). Oscar may still pack a punch but his reflexes and stamina are now suspect. Manny's advantage over Oscar is his speed and stamina. No fighter, all weight categories considered, can keep up with Manny's pace. And his being a southpaw has created fits against all comers who have thought they could handle Manny's quickness.

The L key. The Lefts. Both guys are lefties but Oscar is a converted southpaw. His jabs still carry so much strength and had kept opponents at bay during his heydays. Take away those left jab and Manny will only have only the left hooks to contend with. Occasionally, Oscar will throw his right leads but this is only to set up his lefts. Manny of course packs so much power with his left but it is dangerous for him to throw his left lead straights against a taller dela Hoya. Manny should use his right crosses and hooks more often, preferably to the body of Oscar to take away those left jabs. Add luck, of course. Manny will need plenty of them.

The A factor. Manny has to adapt to what Oscar will offer on the table during fight night. Both camps have devised their own strategies to offset each other's advantages. Oscar will press for the kill in the early going. So it is crucial for Manny not to even consider testing Oscar's strength in the early rounds as he is wont to do in the past. Manny has to be active and keep away from Oscar's bullying tactics. In all his fights against top caliber opponents in the mold of Tito Trinidad, Shane Mosley and Floyd Mayweather Jr., Oscar showed tendencies to jumpstart his offense only to fade in the latter rounds. That would be one crucial thing to remember.

The Y key. Youth is on the side of Manny. Younger fighters have the ability to recuperate and recover faster. They are also easily coachable. Should Manny gets tag early on, he should not panic and pay attention instead to what Freddie Coach will tell him in between rounds.

Of course, this corner's take is that this is an unsolicited advice. Manny is better off doing what he does best atop the ring.

For whatever this is worth, however, how about the SLAY slogan come fight night?



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