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If I Were a Boxing Matchmaker: Manny Pacquiao

If I ran his career

Howdy folks. Today I’d like to discuss some potential match ups for a legendary fighter.

Manny “Pacman” Pacquiao 62-7-2 (39 KOs)

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There’s not a whole lot that I can say about this great that most everybody doesn’t already know, but I will give my two cents anyways. This man is a living legend and unquestionably a first ballot Hall of Fame inductee. There are not too many notable names in the business that Pacquiao hasn’t been in the ring with. Pacman has squared off with the likes of Juan Manuel Marquez four times, Marco Antonio Barrera twice, Eric Morales three times, Timothy Bradley three times, Oscar De La Hoya, Ricky Hatton, Miguel Cotto, Joshua Clottey, Antonio Margarito, Shane Mosley, Brandon Rios, Chris Algieri, Floyd Mayweather, Jessie Vargas, Jeff Horn, Lucas Matthysse, Adrien Broner, Oscar Larios, Chatchai Sasakul, Keith Thurman, and others. There are about eight or more potential, or current Hall of Famers on this list, and many more past titleholders that he has put the gloves on with.

Pacquaio has technically won titles in eight weight divisions his resume is one of the best that this sport has ever seen. We all know that Manny is past his prime, but how many boxers can still perform at an elite level like this man has at his age? Considering he can still defeat top level opposition, why not keep going?

He makes millions of dollars any time he steps into the ring, yet probably gives away half of it to homeless people in the Philippines. Let’s see what some more suitable match ups for this living legend are.

#1 Matchup: Errol Spence 26-0 (21 KOs)

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This is assuming Spence recovers fully, as was stated by PBC

Errol Spence is currently the number one welterweight according to all major ranking boards after the tough victory over Shawn Porter. He is also the IBF and WBC belt-holder. Manny Pacquaio is the WBA titleholder. This would be a major challenge for an aged veteran like Pacquiao, but is there really a challenge that has been put forth for Manny that has turned out bad? Usually when a veteran is faded, you tend to assume the worst and it typically ends about exactly the way you anticipate, especially when you’re in the ring with an elite fighter. The good thing about this, is I’ve never been overly concerned for “Pacman”. He doesn’t really seem to ever look completely shot. His legs are still under him and his wits still seem intact.

Considering that he still has enough left in the tank, this could be an interesting match. Pacquaio is the faster of the two and has a high work rate. This can pose some problems for Spence, if Pacquaio can still pull the trigger. Spence is the bigger guy, but it’s pretty rare to see Manny really hurt. We would see if an aged legend is enough to defeat a rising star. This would be perfect in Dallas at AT&T Stadium.

#2 Matchup: Terence Crawford 35-0 (26 KOs)

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Questions are going to continue to linger until we can finally get some more clarification on who the best in this division is and nearly every other division in boxing. Can we PLEASE STOP THE BULLSHIT and just get these shows on the road? This has actually started to heat up and get exciting for all of us fans, with the recent pairings of Pacquaio versus Thurman match and the Spence versus Porter match. We all just want it to continue and hope it does. A round robin with these elite athletes is just a recipe for success and we are proving what can happen when you pin the best against the best. It provides great entertainment.

However, leaving a guy like Terence Crawford out of the mix is just criminal, so let’s get some negotiations going and complete the puzzle. As far as how this match would go, it would be very interesting to see if Crawford can match the punch output and speed of Pacquaio. Crawford would most likely try to stay at distance and wait for the counter shots on Manny, but he might have to turn it into a bit of a fire fight like Thurman had to, which would be very intriguing to watch. Las Vegas would be a good landing spot for this match, or what about a place like Colorado Springs where Crawford trains? Can’t think of a big match that has been set up there ever. Many people from the Colorado Springs and Denver area can fill up a big stadium like the Air Force academy. There are many former Olympians, you could add to this card, as Colorado Springs, is where Olympic training is.

#3 Matchup: Danny Garcia 35-2 (21 KOs)

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Danny Garcia is still a formidable opponent in the welterweight division. He can match up well against all of the top boxers at 147, or even some coming up from 140 to 147. Basically, don’t count him out against anybody right now. I know he lost to both Thurman and Porter, but he was still competitive. Pacquiao and Garcia are top-7 welterweights right now and this would keep both men in line to fight other elite welterweights for Championship pedigree.

Pacquaio’s key’s to victory are to use his speed and his in-and-out style to pressure and outwork Garcia. Garcia needs to use his catch-and-counter style to catch Manny with a few big shots. The problem is that Pacquaio has a legitimate beard and Garcia can’t count on one big punch to stop the “Pacman”. He will need to up his work rate drastically. Still an interesting matchup and would be great to land in Las Vegas, Philadelphia, or New York.

#4 Matchup: Shawn Porter 30-3-1 (17 KOs)

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Although Shawn Porter defeated Danny Garcia, I think the Danny Garcia bout would be an easier match for Pacquaio and probably get the same credibility for the win, or loss. Also, Shawn Porter is more of a bruiser than Garcia, which keeps Manny’s body a little fresher. This could be an interesting match from the standpoint of seeing if Shawn Porter can actually wear down a guy like Pacquaio. Would this end up being too taxing for Manny, or can Pacquaio stay far enough away, using angles and his in and out movement to pepper Porter with his speed? Both men are currently top-5 welterweights, so this would put either one in a position to fight on a championship level again. This would be good to set up in New York, or Las Vegas.

#5 Matchup: Amir Khan 34-5 (21 KOs)

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This might not seem like the most interesting bout now, but a few years back this was being discussed as a potential match. Which could have been a good one had it happened. I have still heard some small rumors about this happening not too long ago, so I think it could still be worth talking about. Even at this point in time of his career, Amir Khan still has some international pull when it comes to fans and generating revenue. Which is why this could be a possibility.

Both have respectable reputations in the fight game and both are past their primes. I would still be interested in this match, even right now. Both are very fast and it would be fun to watch these little speed demons go at it. The biggest question, obviously, is Khan’s chin. If Pacquiao can catch Khan clean, he goes down. However, Khan can make it interesting if he can move and stay away from Pacquaio with his quick combinations. This would especially be relevant if Manny Pacquaio cannot bribe Floyd Mayweather out of retirement, or if he were to lose to any of the other titleholders. I don’t think Floyd is coming out of retirement, otherwise I would have put him in this spot, but you never know if his funds start running short. This could be a huge money maker in the U.K. where everyone would show up; or in the Middle East somewhere, since they seem to want to spend some big money on entertainment (Joshua versus Ruiz), or in the Philippines where the entire country would probably tune in. Or even in China, or in Las Vegas.

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