super.fight.must

Manny Pacquiao (right) fights Juan Manuel Marquez for the WBO welterweight title at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on Nov. 12. Pacquiao edged Marquez in a majority decision, stretching his win streak to 15 fights, but adding more controversy to their heated rivalry.  (AFP photo/Jewel Samad)


MANILA — There’s only one fight that has to be done and that’s the fight the whole world wants to see: Manny Pacquiao vs Floyd Mayweather.

Oscar De La Hoya said there’s no point staging a fourth fight between Pacquiao and Juan Manuel Marquez because nothing’s going to change.

“So, the fight that has to be made is Mayweather vs Pacquiao,” De La Hoya said in Los Angeles a couple of days after Pacquiao defeated Marquez for the second time.

De La Hoya said the fight with Mayweather could take place on May 5 if both camps agree.

“We want the fight. Golden Boy wants the fight. I know for a fact that Pacquiao wants the fight. I know for a fact,” said De La Hoya, representing Mayweather.

Then he put the blame on Pacquaio’s promoter, Bob Arum.

“The one that doesn’t want the fight is Bob Arum. He’s the one that doesn’t want the fight — for what reason I don’t have an idea,” said boxing’s golden boy.

Arum said Pacquiao vs. Mayweather “will never, ever happen” because the undefeated American is scared of Pacquiao, and the latter will never run out of reasons to dodge Pacquiao, from the doping procedures to the splitting of the purse.

But following the fight between Pacquiao and Marquez, Mayweather may no longer be afraid of the Filipino champion, if he ever was.

Marquez exposed Pacquiao’s weaknesses when up against a counter-puncher, and whoever faces Pacquiao next will only have to look at the recent fight.

“It’s so funny how people say Marquez matched Pacquiao’s speed. It’s not speed, it’s timing,” said De La Hoya, who added that he saw the fight at 7-5 in favor of the Mexican.

De La Hoya said while it was a good fight, he thought that Marquez won.

“I thought it was a good fight, the way I expected. Everybody knows that Marquez and Pacquiao are made for each other. I think the fight was very close,” he said.

“But I personally had it 7-5 for Marquez,” he added.

That’s how many fights fans saw the fight, too.

But the judges saw it otherwise, one scoring a draw, and the two others 115-113 and 116-112 for Pacquiao.

Marquez’s trainer, Nacho Beristain, has demanded $25 million for Marquez if Pacquiao’s camp wants a fourth fight to happen.

“That only shows that they realize that Juan Manuel had a clear win over Pacquiao. Otherwise, they wouldn’t show much interest (in making a fourth fight),” Beristain said in an article that came out of www.boxingscene.com.

Looking closely at the fight, however, showed that Pacquiao was the aggressor, and Compubox numbers showed that he threw more punches and landed more.

Experts believe that the 38-year-old challenger, who waited all night for his chance to counter, did not do enough to take the title away from Pacquiao.

The 32-year-old congressman from the Philippines notched his 15th straight victory and retained his World Boxing Organization (WBO) welterweight title. He deserved it.

A couple of Pinoy scribes caught up with De La Hoya, who retired after being stopped by Pacquiao in 2008, when he dropped by the Wild Card Gym the other day.

“So, you finally got off your couch,” he was told, and he laughed hard.

De La Hoya said judges could have scored it a draw.

“Maybe a couple of rounds were close or were even. You know it’s no secret that Marquez has Pacquiao’s number. It’s no secret. He knows what to do. Marquez is a counter-puncher,” he said.

“Marquez is the fighter who waits for you and he’ll wait for you all night. And a fighter like Manny, he wants to fight. He wants to prove to the people that he wants to fight and he’s gonna go and that’s what Marquez capitalized.”

De La Hoya said the expectations were too high on Pacquiao, the 11-1 favorite over Marquez, and when the Mexican hit him with clear shots all night, many thought he lost it.

“I think people were in shock probably because people are used to seeing Pacquiao dominate everybody in recent times and the fact that he had a close fight and people are saying ‘Oh my God! Oh!’
“But it’s understandable. There are people who’s gonna cry foul and there are people who will say Manny won. That’s the beauty of having a style of Marquez and a style of Pacquiao. You will always have a good fight,” he said.

There’s no need for another Pacquiao-Marquez because nothing’s going to change.

“What for? You know. There’s nothing better Marquez can do and there’s nothing better Pacquiao can do. We’re gonna see the same fight. Same result, probably,” he said.

Not all Mexicans thought Marquez won.

“Marquez was the challenger. He should have gone for the knockout. But he played it safe in the last few rounds. I think that was his mistake,” said a Mexican who moves around the boxing circle.

“I’m a Mexican and I love Marquez. But he did not do enough to win the fight. And his corner made the mistake of telling him he was ahead. In a close fight, and you are the challenger, you tell your fighter to go for the win,” he added.

“Everybody thought Pacquiao would demolish Marquez the way he demolished De La Hoya or (Miguel) Cotto or (Antonio) Margarito. So when Marquez lasted 12 rounds, and landed those shots, people thought he won the fight.”

But that’s not the way the judges saw it.