WHO'S NEXT FOR PACQUIAO: SPENCE, PORTER, DANNY OR MIKEY GARCIA?
By Maloney L. Samaco
06 Aug 2019
Spence (L) and Porter.
Manny Pacquiao, 40, has recently dominated the 30-year old Keith Thurman by split decision last July 20 at the MGM Grand Garden, Las Vegas, Nevada. Prior to the WBA (Super) welterweight championship, Thurman was undefeated at 29-0, 22 KOs having fought 148 rounds with 73% KO rate.
Thurman was taller and heftier with a height of 5′ 7½ (175 cm) compared to Pacquiao's height of 5′ 5½″ (166 cm) and a reach of 67″ (170 cm).
Although he dealt Thurman his first career loss, Pacquiao's smaller size and advanced age took its toll in the middle rounds until he recovered in the tenth to hurt the American called "One Time."
This caused Buboy Fernandez, Sean Gibbons and even Freddie Roach to caution Manny against fighting bigger, younger, quickier and stronger opponents.
Aside from Floyd Mayweather Jr. who is still in doubt whether to agree to a rematch or remain retired, there are four champions or ex-champs whose names cropped up as probable next opponents for the fighter-legislator.
They are Erroll Spence Jr., Shawn Porter, Danny Garcia and Mikey Garcia.
Spence (25-0-0, 21 KOs) has a deadlier record than Thurman. Though he has fought a lesser 108 rounds but he has a higher KO rate of 84%. He is much younger at age 29 and is a southpaw like Manny.
Nicknamed "The Truth", Spence at 5′ 9½″ (177 cm) and with a reach of 72″ (183 cm) is 2 inches taller than Thurman and 3 inches longer in reach. That means the Desoto, Texas native has a 4-inch height and 5-inch reach advantage over Pacquiao.
Spence was the IBF welterweight title holder since 2017. He is ranked as the world's No. 5 pound for pound by The Ring magazine and No. 4 by BoxRec. He is also ranked as the world's best welterweight by The Ring, No. 2 by the Transnational Boxing Rankings Board, and No. 2 by BoxRec.
Shawn Porter (30-2-1, 17 KOs) has fought 33 bouts for 219 rounds for a lesser 52% KO rate. The 31-year old orthodox fighter nicknamed "Showtime" is about the same size as that of Thurman. He has a height of 5′ 7″ (170 cm) and a reach of 69½″ (177 cm).
He was defeated by Thurman and Britain's Kell Brook and drew with Mexican Julio Diaz.
The Las Vegas, Nevada native is a two-time welterweight world champion, being the WBC titlist since 2018, and previously the IBF titlist from 2013 to 2014. Porter is ranked No. 4 welterweight by The Ring, the Transnational Boxing Rankings Board, and BoxRec.
Spence and Porter will collide on September for the unified IBF and WBC welterweight championship.
Danny (L) and Mikey Garcia.
Danny Garcia (35-2-0, 21 KOs) has fought 246 rounds with a 57% KO rate. The 31-year old Philadelphia, Pennsylvania native has a height of 5′ 8″ (173 cm) and a reach of 68½″ (174 cm). The orthodox fighter nicknamed "Swift" lost to Thurman and Porter.
He was the unified WBA (Super), WBC, Ring magazine and lineal light welterweight champion from 2012 to 2015, and the WBC welterweight title holder from 2016 to 2017.
Mickey Garcia (39-1-0, 30 KOs) has fought 226 rounds for a 75% KO rate. The 31-year old orthodox boxer has a height of 5′ 6″ (168 cm) and a reach of 68″ (173 cm).
The Moreno Valley, California native has held multiple world championships in four weight classes, including the lineal light welterweight title since 2018, held the WBO and Ring magazine featherweight titles in 2013, the WBO junior lightweight title from 2013 to 2014, the WBC and IBF lightweight titles from 2017 to 2019, and the IBF junior welterweight title in 2018. He has also challenged Spence for the IBF welterweight title and lost in 2019.
Garcia is ranked the No. 8 boxer pound for pound, by ESPN, No. 9 by The Ring; and No. 10 by the Transnational Boxing Rankings Board.
Pacquiao's camp prefers lesser threats Danny Garcia or Mikey Garcia. At his age turning 41 by December, the senator's handlers are protecting him from permanent damage or injury.
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