MANNY PACQUIAO IN A NO WIN PREDICAMENT
By Greg R. Penilla, M.D.
Sun, 10 Jun 2012
A mere few hours from now, the boxing world will once again witness one of the greatest boxers of all time, Emmanuel Dapidran Pacquaio, in action.
The issue that had been raised and questions that had been asked so many times for the past several days by pundits and fans: Bradley looks great and confident. Is an upset in the horizon? Can Manny Pacquiao defeat a young, hungry and undefeated fighter who is at the peak of his career? Is Manny Pacquiao?s incredible run about to end?
Although Pacquiao remains at least a 4-1 favorite, there is a lot of chatter about an inevitable upset that will propel Timothy Bradley to superstardom.
There has been so much discussion about Bradley?s intimidating demeanor, ripped muscles and aura of confidence during the final press conference and weigh in, while Manny Pacquiao seems lackadaisical at best. Or simply, just being Manny.
Was it an intimidating persona by Tim Bradley or was it nervous energy?
Dan Rafael of ESPN, who is picking Bradley to win, said it best; this fight is the biggest and most important, career defining fight for Tim Bradley. On the other hand, for Manny Pacquiao, this may not even be his 5th, 6th or 7th most important fight of his career.
For the fighting Congressman from the lone district of Sarangani Province in the Philippines, this is just another fight. Will this prove to be the difference?
Unfortunately for Pacquiao, he is between a rock and a hard place. He is in a no win situation.
When (not if), Pacquiao wins decisively tonight by knockout, these detractors will simply say, Tim Bradley for all his youth, bulging muscles, ripped abs, training from hell and undefeated record, was handpicked for his style that plays in the hands of Manny Pacquiao. Tim Bradley was expected to lose to make Manny look good.
If Manny Pacquiao wins by decision, even in a rout, his detractors will say, he has lost his edge and has not knocked out anybody since Miguel Cotto. He is no longer a good fighter and obviously declining to the twilight of his boxing career.
If he wins in a close fight, his detractors will say, Tim Bradley was robbed.
However, if Tim Bradley wins, regardless whether by knockout or by decision, there will be a chorus of naysayers proclaiming, we told you so; Manny Pacquiao is an over rated one dimensional fighter.
To some people, Manny is never good enough.
When he went up in weight against an unheralded David Diaz, there were some boxing analysts who actually thought David Diaz can win. But when Manny won, same analysts said, oh well, Diaz really had no chance
When Pacquiao fought Oscar De La Hoya, the Golden Boy of boxing, Manny was not given a chance. Some pundits even suggested that ODLH will kill him. When Manny won and annihilated the Golden Boy, suddenly, ODLH was declared as an old, washed up and dehydrated fighter.
When Pacquiao fought Ricky, The Hitman Hatton, critics felt that Manny will finally meet his match. But after Hatton was knocked out cold and sent to dreamland in the second round after being down twice in the very first round, detractors felt Hatton was not really a good fighter with a style tailor made for Manny and was ?softened? by Mayweather.
When Manny fought the great Puerto Rican Miguel Cotto, once again, Pacquiao was supposed to lose, but when Manny overwhelmed Cotto and the fight mercilessly stopped in the 12th round, critics felt Cotto has not recovered from his beating by Margarito. Ironically, these very same detractors hailed Cotto as if he was at his peak when he lost to Mayweather last month.
When Pacquiao fought Margarito, same naysayers declared Margarito is big and strong and Pacquiao will not be able to handle a legitimate super welterweight. Not only did Manny prove that in spite of giving away 17 pounds in weight, Manny withstood the heavy bombs thrown by Margarito while at the same time breaking and reconfiguring the face of the American from Tijuana.
But once again, after the fight, pundits minimized Pacquiao?s incredible ring accomplishment.
When Manny went the distance, albeit shutouts, with Clottey and Mosley, the usual suspects considered Pacquiao on the decline without taking into consideration that both Mosley and Clottey went into a survival mode after feeling the heat of the Congressman?s punches.
It is well known now that Pacquiao?s cynics had a field day criticizing Manny when he had a subpar performance against the best Mexican counterpuncher, Juan Manuel Marquez. They have been very vocal that Pacquaio actually lost. Admittedly a very close fight but the compubox numbers support the verdict with Manny landing more jabs and powershots and clearly the aggressor. Personal problems aside, Manny won that fight fair and square, although a very close one
When Manny Pacquaio, the pride of the Philippines wins in a convincing and destructive fashion tonight, it will not be surprising if there will still be excuses from his critics.
We will find out tonight. Manny Pacquiao will once again show the boxing world while he is considered one of the greatest boxers of all time.
It?s unfortunate that this author will not be at the MGM to see the great Manny Pacquiao in action as he usually does. But he will definitely have a great time with boisterous friends and family watching the fight at suburbs in St. Louis, Missouri.
Prediction: Pacquiao by stoppage in the 7th round.
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