|Extra Two Cents on Manny Pacquiao, Ricky Hatton, Floyd Mayweather Jr and More
By Jason Petock, DoghouseBoxing (May 7, 2009) Photo © German Villasenor
Now that all the smoke has cleared and the lights have dimmed, I’m going to throw in my extra two cents into the arena about Manny Pacquiao and what happened in general, and Ricky Hatton as well. First off, let me say that it was amazing to me how many predictors used their expertise and vast boxing wisdom to pick the defeated fighter in Hatton to annihilate Pacquiao. I guess none of you remember the horrible performance put forth by Ricky Hatton against Luis Collazo awhile back. Collazo should have won that fight.
That Collazo fight was supposed to be his showcase bout, exposing him to an American audience. We were supposed to be dazzled and amazed by Ricky Hatton when he stepped foot on American soil, and to be honest if you are and were a boxing fan and saw that fight, you’d know that this fight against Pacquiao would be even worse for Hatton in so many different ways. The storm was building.
As the commonly worn out adage, but appropriately useful one gets used once more here, we should take it to heart with: “Styles make fights” when looking at Pacquiao’s blowout of Hatton.
Hatton is a brawler who likes to come forward. He’s a pressure fighter but in several of his fights he’s relied on roughhouse tactics and an onslaught that has sometimes confused and disoriented his opponents, as well as frustrating them. But Pacquiao has all the elements that he needs to defeat a brawler in his arsenal, speed, power, footwork and fine tuning by the man himself, Freddie Roach. Not to mention the fact that Pacquiao can hit and lay power driven leather on you with either hand. Hatton’s soccer hooligan mauling style falls flat with a quick and responsive Manny Pacquiao. Say what you will but many of us saw this coming. Let’s just hope that all of our dreams are realized and Floyd Mayweather Mayweather, Jr. fights Pacquaio to settle all the questions once and for all.
I mean, I truly wasn’t asked my opinion as to who I thought would win the bout. Could be that I’m not an expert enough to make that call. Never claimed to be. But even a blind man standing outside on a cloudy day could see that Hatton wasn’t going to make it in that bout. Granted, I’m not taking anything away from Ricky Hatton or his career. He’s made his bones and proven himself above and beyond in the ring, and I extend nothing but the deepest respect and admiration to Hatton and his family.
The problem exists, however, when a fighter that is a marquee attraction in his country comes to the states and gets wiped out. Where do you go from that? I ask this because with such a critical media collective as there is in the U.S., one fight can destroy or build your career. That’s all it takes these days unfortunately. And those doing the judging never even laced up a glove before. Go figure…
True, Ricky had all the elements behind him to make it appear on paper, and in the hearts of many, that he had a shot against Manny. He’s determined, he trains like a madman and has become refocused and adapted under the tutelage of Floyd Mayweather, Sr. Like Pacquiao, he had a whole country behind him, showing their love and support. He could have won. But he didn’t. And the reason he didn’t win is because he faced a fighter in Manny Pacquiao that is at the pinnacle of success, and his career right now. He is the pound-for-pound fighter to beat. Period.
I was fortunate enough to see Pacquiao fight live when he beat Jorge Solis at the Alamodome in San Antonio a few years back. That bout was just another test run for “PacMan” really. Just another fight and element to build upon a foundation that has become solid as concrete in Manny Pacquiao. In his greatness, yes I dared to say it, he’s a humble and respectful man outside of the ring. Inside of it, he’s like an unleashed tiger that pounces on its prey and strikes repeatedly until there’s nothing left of the kill. Pacquiao brings excitement back into boxing every time he fights, and his humility outside of it is a truly rare and appreciated trait considering what we’re usually subjected to. Manny Pacquiao is one of the best fighters of our generation, and a true example of the determination of the human will, no matter what condition it may be put under.
Earlier in Pacquiao’s career there were some people who would make brief comparisons between Pacquiao and Tyson. They did this because there were a few comparative aspects between the two fighters, in terms of explosiveness, raw energy and power. That’s something that has been waning and missing in the sport that we love so much, and we’ve been lucky enough to see the career of Manny “Pacman” Pacquiao unfold and blossom before our very eyes.
Keep in mind that these are just my opinions, nothing more. But I will tell you that there were many of us that saw this coming. We knew who the victor would be. Hands down. Quiet victories are so much more bittersweet aren’t they? I think they are. Until next time, keep punching. Pays to stay humble.
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