Filipino great Manny Pacquiao is currently staring into the abyss of what looks to be the greatest crisis in the eight-weight champion’s career as he struggles to secure his main Mexican rival for a fifth bout this coming September.
At 34, and with two straight defeats, many are throwing the once formidable star on the scrap heap as Pacquiao fights to claim a viable opponent for his first non-US bout in seven years. And with Juan Manuel Marquez not playing ball, options look grim.
Promoter Bob Arum has recently indicated that he would like to give the ‘Pacman’ an opportunity to overturn one of his most recent defeats and all signs now point to the Asian legend facing either Marquez or controversial welterweight belt holder Timothy Bradley.
In my view, Pacquiao has beaten both of those fighters before and should not be in the current position he is in, whereas his boxing prowess is in question, and I would fully expect a backlash from the Congressman against either of his former foes – with nothing motivating a fighter more than a bad defeat.
Marquez is fast approaching the end of his career, and he knows it – so is attempting to avoid a meeting with the wounded Pacquiao, as on the other side of the coin, Bradley would like the chance to prove his first ‘win’ was no fluke on the scorecards.
For my money, I would say either of those returns would suit Manny down to the ground and whatever odds you can get on a Pacquiao win in the fall – take them, as a winning return for the likeable fallen champion is readily on the cards.