Boxing experts say Pacquiao must win big

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CEBU CITY — Boxing luminaries in this fight town are one and the same in the belief that Manny Pacquiao doesn’t only need a win but a resounding one at that when he goes up against the brash Mexican-American slugger Brandon Rios on Nov. 24 in Macau.


Two members of Team Pacquiao – training assistants Buboy Fernandez and Nonoy Neri – and promoter Wakee Salud said the Filipino icon badly needs an emphatic victory to resurrect his career following the heartbreaking loss to Juan Manuel Marquez last year.

“It has to be a very impressive victory and not just an ordinary win,” said Salud, who put up last night’s big show at the Waterfront Hotel featuring a world bantamweight title fight between Namibia’s Paulus Ambunda and Japanese Tomoki Kameda.

Fernandez, Pacquiao’s boyhood friend and Freddie Roach’s No. 2 man in training camp, said such is very doable.

“Rios will be there to fight and Manny’s going to hit him and he won’t be able to take it,” said Fernandez.

Neri likens Rios to a smaller version of Antonio Margarito, the plodding 5-11 banger who the 34-year-old Pacquiao beat to a bloody pulp in late-2010 in Texas.

“Rios doesn’t move much so Manny won’t have a hard time landing his big punches,” said Neri.
“He’ll end up like Margarito,” said Neri, who has an idea of what Rios will look like after the scheduled 12-round welterweight war at The Venetian.

From what Neri sees, Rios, much younger than Pacquiao at 27, will likely be rescued by the referee or by his handlers from taking unnecessary punishment.

Salud said that Pacquiao is going to conduct a punching clinic come fight night.

“It will be eat-all-you-can, buffet-style for Manny,” said Salud. (Manila Bulletin)

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