Keith Thurman believes his defeat to Manny Pacquiao was simply down to who was the smarter on the night and that the Filipino Senator was never a serious threat.
‘One Time’ surrendered his WBA welterweight title to the 41-year-old legend at the MGM Grand almost exactly one year ago.
Firstly, discussing the reverse on Sirius XM’s ‘AK and Barak Show‘ recently, Thurman outlined what went wrong from his point of view.
Pacquiao dropped him in the very first round of a session Thurman believes he won, but just couldn’t contain the elusive eight-weight champion.
“Yeah, definitely I wasn’t hurt by the knockdown,” said Thurman. “I certainly didn’t feel threatened.
“There was a time, early on in my career, that I was knocked down in the first round. It was a fight that was not televised, nobody got to see it.
“What happened was, I knocked that dude down that round. And then the next round and the next round. But at that time I felt like my life was on the line. I felt like so much was at stake at that moment when I got up.
“With Pacquiao, it wasn’t the same. Moving backward helped that knockdown. He kinda jumped in at the right time.
“He was very inactive in the first round, I felt like he was feeling me out and maybe he was gonna let it go. I think at that moment, I felt like he’s doing nothing, that’s when he sprung in to do something.
“That’s where I keep saying he threw the right punch at the right time. It’s really hard to do that when I was dominating the whole round.
“I’m in it really nice, I felt focused, the one moment I take my focus away is the moment he attacks, the moment he strikes.
“It was just a well-placed punch. A punch that landed at the right time that caught me with the momentum. It is what it is,” he added.
Concluding by giving Pacquiao his props, Thurman stated: “He just got me, man. I think the whole performance came down to Pacquiao throwing the right punches at the right time. Then keeping his hands up and seeing the bigger picture, seeing the W.
“He wasn’t like ‘I’m gonna destroy this kid.’ He was just real nice and easy.
“Pacquiao did everything by the book. He probably listened to the corner, probably listened to Freddie (Roach, trainer) over there. They executed a good gameplan.
“Like my old trainer always used to say, ‘Smart fighters win, dumb fighters lose’, and I give him credit. Because regardless of how close the fight was, he executed a smart gameplan.
“The judges gave it to him, it’s his fight.”
Despite his kind words towards the ‘Pacman’, Thurman is still hoping to land the rematch at some point.
Manny Pacquiao, on the other hand, is looking at a possible unification or maybe a crossover with Conor McGregor – who knows?