Before every big HBO fight, HBO boxing analyst Max Kellerman has a meeting with the boxers during the press tour to get their opinions on the upcoming fight and their thoughts on their opponent.
In this installment of HBO Face-Off: Manny Pacquiao vs. Antonio Margarito, Kellerman also interviews the trainers Freddie Roach and Robert Garcia, who sat side by side with their fighters.
During the face-off, Kellerman touches on a particular subject that remains controversial, the issue of the illegal handwraps that Antonio Margarito was caught with before his loss to Sugar Shane Mosley, which later caused him to get a year long suspension by the state of California. Margarito says he didn’t know the handwraps were loaded by his former trainer, but his opponent Manny Pacquiao thinks otherwise and believes Margarito knew what was in his wraps.
The preview ends off with an awkward moment, as Freddie Roach looks at Antonio and tells him Manny Pacquiao will knock him out inside of 8 rounds, causing Antonio to laugh at Roach’s prediction. The full segment of Face-Off Pacquiao-Margarito will air on HBO in the coming days.
HBO 24/7 Pacquiao/Margarito premieres October 23, 2010. The Pacquiao vs. Margarito fight is on November 13, 2010 on HBO PPV at the Dallas Cowboys Stadium.
Watch HBO Face-Off Pacquiao-Margarito with Max Kellerman:
Saturday, October 9, 2010
There is a heaviness to Bob Arum these days, to his walk and his voice, as if a cassette recording was just a touch low on juice.
On Monday, he was at the Biltmore Hotel in downtown L.A., doing what he has done since 1965, trying to sell tickets and pay-per-view buys for a boxing card.
This one features Julio Cesar Chavez Jr., and two other title fights in Anaheim on Dec. 4.
"And, don't forget, we've priced these seats right because of the way the economy is," Arum said, dutifully rasping into the microphone. "Almost every seat will be either $50 or $30. So I think it's going to be a great crowd and a great night of boxing."
Arum had a decent audience in the ballroom, but not like the old days. No longer does every major newspaper in the nation employ a full-time boxing writer. It is a website-media sport now. ESPN, which sets the agenda that most sports editors heed, basically ignores boxing.
There are two real stars now, and thanks to Floyd Mayweather Jr.'s erratic and allegedly lawless behavior, they are not scheduled to meet.
The other is Manny Pacquiao.
He will fight Antonio Margarito in Cowboys Stadium on Nov. 13. That fight, although not Pacman-Mayweather, was significant enough to prompt the requisite 24/7 preview series from HBO, and a nationwide media tour, just like the old days.
The tour began at the Beverly Hills Hotel on Aug. 31.
Two days before, someone at Top Rank, Arum's promotional company, took a call from Seattle.
It was a Monday, and the news was that John Arum, Bob's 49-year-old son, had been missing all weekend.
He was an environmental attorney, and he had been climbing Storm King, in his campaign to climb the 100 tallest mountains in the state of Washington. Sunday was his 11th wedding anniversary.
The Top Rank employee who took the call went to Bruce Trampler, the company's matchmaker.
"We're going to have to take care of The Chief," Trampler said.
Through the shock, Arum kept asking two questions. What's the best-case scenario? What's the worst-case scenario? He was told that John might have gotten hurt and was waiting for help. That was the best case.
Arum immediately flew to Seattle to be with John's wife, Susan. On Wednesday, searchers found the backpack and on Friday they found the body.
The memorial service was last Saturday.
"It was wonderful," Bob Arum said at the Biltmore, sitting at a table, making sure that his companion sat by his right ear, the one that hears.
"He had done a lot of work with Indian tribes. There were representatives of four of them. Usually, each one has a different person to pay tribute to that they adopt. All four had designated John."
John Arum devoted much time to securing fishing and hunting rights for various tribes. Bob remained proudly bemused over his son's original career choice.
"He grew up on 72nd Street and Seventh Avenue in New York," Arum said. "Then, when he was a teenager, he went to a wilderness camp one summer. That was it. He wanted to be outside from that day on. He went to Reed College, in Portland, and began working on his career. I don't know where he got it."
Arum is 78. To stay atop the treacherous boxing game for that many decades takes a level of ferocity that recedes with age.
But without Mayweather-Pacquiao, where does he go?
"With all his legal problems and after that ridiculous, racist rant of his (on video), I don't know if it happens," Arum said. "It certainly looks like Floyd doesn't want to fight him. I just think he would feel a lot of emotional trauma if he lost his zero (as in his 41-0 record)."
For the first time Arum is not completely dismissing a Pacquiao-Paul Williams fight, although he isn't endorsing it, or a fight with Tim Bradley, provided Bradley gets healthy and beats Devon Alexander.
But at some point Pacquiao will walk out of the room. That might be the day the lights finally go out.
In 2002, Arum survived a plane crash at Big Bear Lake and then boarded another plane to Las Vegas because "the odds are with me. It can't happen twice in one day."
A couple of years ago, he described Edwin Valero and Hugo Chavez "as two idiots from Venezuela," and when the audience gasped, he bellowed, "I'm 76 with a bad ear. I can say anything I want."
Perhaps that lion will roar again. On Monday, Arum passed Trampler in the hall and asked if he wanted a lift to Vegas.
"Private plane," Arum said, temptingly.
"Nah, I enjoy driving four hours in the rain," Trampler said.
Arum grinned and waved him off, then slowly walked down the hall, 12 rounds at a time.
The price of knocking Manny Pacquiao down has just gone up.
After Coach Freddie Roach offered any and all Pacman sparring partners in Baguio a bounty of $1,000 if they can score a knockdown with the big gloves and protective headgear in the Shape Up Boxing Gym inside the cozy Cooyeesan Hotel in the strawberry capital, agent Michael Koncz decided to match the trainer's offer.
"I raised the stakes, the ante a little," Koncz just told me by phone from Baguio, where it was late Saturday night.
"I pushed Freddie's bounty up to $2,000, so let's see if any of these guys can collect."
This is said to be the second training camp in which Coach Roach has offered the bonus money but so far no one has cashed in.
In camp with Manny noware Michael Medina, Glen Tapia, Vanes Martirosyan and world champ also trained by Roach, Amir Khan. (Actually, Glendale, Calif., based Martirosyan, who fights Pawel Wolak Dec, 4, is said to be in the air.)
Martirosyan, who is trained by the ubiquitous Roach and is angling for a big bout, proclaimed himself most likely to grab the bonus money.
"I respect Manny a lot and I have learned a lot from him. He is a great fighter but I feel I am up to the challenge," Martirosyan continued. "That is why I always say I want to fight the best. I want to prove how good I am. It doesn't get much better than sparring with Manny Pacquiao. I hope some of these other champions man up and accept my challenge," Martirosyan told Boxingscene.
There continues to be skepticisim as to whether Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. is flying to the Philippines to join the happy campers.
Koncz said that Baguio Media Day remains set for Monday, Oct. 18 and that Bob Arum, winding up a humanitarian visit with a group from his Las Vegas temple in Cuba, will be in attendance.
Right now, though, Arum is playing Our Man In Havana.
The Canadian agent also said will leave the mountain air of Baguio Oct. 22 and shoot down to Manila where he may train just one day before flying to Los Angeles. Baguio is a five hour drive from Manila.
Pacquiao will wrap up his training at Roach's Wild Card Gym in Hollywood and then just taper off when they get to Arlington, Texas, for the Nov. 13 Cowboys Stadium bout against Antonio Margarito.
Koncz also reported that Pacman's previously sore left foot is fine and that a sinus headache/cold has subsided.
"It's been a solid camp so far," Koncz said. "Trust me, Manny is not taking Margarito lightly, not at all. Manny is very focused, as focused as I've ever seen him."
Unlike their previous camp in Baguio, before the Miguel Cotto bout, Koncz and conditioning guru Alex Ariza have not engaged in any "unofficial sparring" of their own.
No one gets any bonus for knocking Mr. Koncz down, especially if he is wearing his Jacques Plante Montreal Canadiens goalie's mask which is made of reinforced vulcanized rubber mixed with bulletproof Kevlar.
Friday, October 8, 2010
It was Manny Pacquiao’s turn to allay fears of trainer Freddie Roach and his team that he was in no shape to complete his second week of altitude training in Baguio City.
Showing all is well following a brief bout with flu that cancelled his scheduled workout Wednesday, the Pacman appeared at the Shape Up Gym inside the Coyessan Hotel yesterday for his scheduled sparring that had Roach smiling from ear-to-ear after a three-hour session.
“He was still gasping for air, but that’s explainable after suffering from cold and slight fever the day before,” Roach said. “He’s okay and I’m sure we can recover lost time by week’s end.”
Pacquiao, who will be facing Mexican Antonio Margarito Nov. 13 in Texas for the vacant World Boxing Council superwelterweight title, sparred three rounds each against junior-welter Glen Tapia and junior-middleweight Michael Medina and looked still tired.
As Roach promised, a stricter measure to avoid fans entering the gym despite having the doors closed, was implemented with no allowed one inside, except his handlers.
Even the HBO television team filming the training for its 24/7 program was barred from entering the gym during sparring.
The four-time ‘trainer of the year’ honoree of the Boxing Writers Association of America did not say whether he will push through with his plan to impose curfew on all members of Team Pacquiao to avoid anyone from contacting virus prevalent in the rainy season.
Roach blamed Pacquiao’s contact with so many persons inside and outside the gym as well as in basketball court as reason for suffering from slight flu.
That raised the seven-division champ’s total sparring rounds to 14 counting the eight he did in the first two days with Tapia and Medina, which Roach said was just enough to reach their target before the slated date for his duel with the tough, hard-hitting Mexican set at the Texas Cowboys’ Dallas Stadium in Arlington.
“That’s just right. We don’t intend to cover 150 rounds which we did last year in our preparation against (Miguel) Cotto anyway,” Roach said. “We’ll be making less than 150 rounds in this fight. Maybe 110 or a bit more.”
Short stretching session with physical conditioning coach Alex Ariza and a brief shadow boxing completed the day’s work. To preserve his ward’s strength, Roach canceled doing the routine mitts.
Among those admitted during the workout was Pacquiao’s Wild Card stablemate Amir Khan who flew in yesterday from Los Angeles.
Contrary to earlier reports, Khan will be here to train with Roach for his coming fight this December and not as one of Pacquiao’s sparring partner, although if and when the need arises, he might also utilize his younger ward.
Pound-for-pound king Manny Pacquiao is back in the gym after missing his workout Wednesday due to a cold. Pacquiao did four rounds of sparring with super welterweight prospect Michael Medina and another two rounds with the undefeated Glen Tapia. A contented Freddie Roach said there was no cause for him to be concerned after seeing Pacquiao do his usual routine which lasted for nearly three hours. And based on the testament of one of his sparring partners, Pacquiao will be a tough opponent for the physically bigger Antonio Margarito of Mexico once they meet on November 13 at the Dallas Cowboys Stadium in Texas.
Medina said the Filipino sensation possesses not only the speed but also the power that will lead him to success in his first-ever stint as a 154-lb fighter. Pacquiao has dominated the sport of boxing by being a skinny world champion at 112lbs to a dynamic 147-lb kingpin. According to Medina, he was awed with Pacquiao’s tremendous timing in throwing punches that is made more potent by the Filipino’s ability to combine it with blinding speed.
Meantime World Boxing Association (WBA) super lightweight champion Amir Khan arrived in the Philippines Thursday morning and immediately went to Baguio City to be at the Pacquiao training camp. Khan said he will be in Baguio primarily to train under Roach and conditioning coach Alex Ariza.
Khan is preparing for his title defense against the once-beaten Marcos Maidana of Argentina on December 11 in Las Vegas. The 23-year-old British sensation however would be willing to spar with Pacquiao if Roach asks him to do so.
BAGUIO CITY, Philippines – Just like that, Manny Pacquiao, after showing signs of weakness the other day, is back in shape.
The world’s greatest boxer showed up at the Shape Up Gym yesterday and sparred six rounds against Mexicans Glen Tapia and Michael Medina a day after skipping his roadwork and gym session due to colds.
“Wala naman (It’s nothing),” an insider quoted Pacquiao as saying.
True enough, whatever kept him inside his hotel suite the whole of Wednesday hardly showed in his sparring session that left his Pinoy trainer Buboy Fernandez saying he’s close to 85 percent ready.
Pacquiao did not go out for his morning roadwork yesterday but his handlers said he should be out at the Burnham Park today, a non-sparring day, and be with his team, including strength and conditioning coach Alex Ariza.
Even Freddie Roach was so happy to see Pacquiao back in the gym.
“It’s normal. It happens to every boxer. Maybe it’s because of the changing weather,” said Fernandez, who doused fears that Pacquiao’s training camp has been stalled by his reported bout with sinusitis or colds.
Fernandez said Pacquiao even played basketball Wednesday evening at the Cooyeesan Plaza Hotel to shake off the virus.
“All he needed was to sweat it out and a glass of hot calamansi (lemon) juice. Now he’s okay,” added Fernandez.
Amir Khan, the reigning WBA super-welterweight champion, is now in Baguio to join the training camp as he also prepares for his Dec. 11 fight with Argentine Marcos Maidana at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas.
“I’ve always wanted to join Pacquiao’s camp and learn from it,” said the rising star from Britain.
He said he’s behind Pacquiao all the way as the Filipino icon gears up for his Nov. 13 showdown with rugged Mexican Antonio Margarito.
“I’m totally behind Manny Pacquiao. I think Manny is the best fighter in the world,” he told www.insidesports.ph, adding that he doesn’t see the fight lasting more than nine rounds.
“Whoever you put in front of Manny Pacquiao, I think Manny will beat easily. He’s got the skill, he’s got the speed, he’s got the footwork. This fight I think Manny will stop him maybe in round eight or nine,” he was quoted as saying.
MANILA, Philippines – The trainer of Antonio Margarito is confident that his Mexican ward will go the distance against Manny Pacquiao when they face off for the vacant World Boxing Council (WBC) super welterweight title in November.
“Manny has proven he’s best in the world pound-for-pound,” Garcia told Yahoo! Sports reporter Kevin Iole.
“I know that. You have to give him credit for what he’s accomplished, because he’s done so much. But he’s going against a fighter who is so much bigger and who is going to be on him every single second for all 12 rounds,” he stated.
Pacquiao and Margarito will fight in the $1.2-billion Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas on November 13 (November 14 in Manila).
“A guy who is that much bigger is going to be on him the entire night. Manny has fast, powerful combinations, but once Margarito takes those and keeps coming, it’s going to be a long night for Manny,” said Garcia.
The Filipino boxer-turned-congressman is currently training in Baguio City while the Mexican fighter is holding his training camp in Oxnard, California.
According to Garcia, Margarito’s preparation for the Pacquiao clash has been good.
“Camp is going great; Margarito is looking really good, really strong," Garcia told Ricardo Conde of FightNews.com.
"His conditioning is great, very impressive. It’s a real pleasure working with Margarito, we’re very happy to have him here with us and I’m confident we’ll win November 13th,” he added.
Pacquiao, on the other hand, skipped training on Wednesday after suffering from sinusitis. – With reports from Kevin Iole, Yahoo! Sports and Ricardo Conde, FightNews.com
Wednesday, October 6, 2010
MANILA, Philippines - Coach Freddie Roach said Manny Pacquiao is far from his best.
But if it was true, it didn’t show yesterday when the 31-year-old Filipino icon sparred five rounds with Mexican Glen Tapia at the Shape Up Gym in Baguio City.
“He almost went down,” said Team Pacquiao’s Nonoy Neri of the Mexican sparring partner who, according to Roach, may be just as good as Antonio Margarito.
Roach described Tapia as “cocky” and that he did “very, very good” when he sparred four rounds with Pacquiao last Thursday, the first day of sparring for the awaited Nov. 13 showdown.
The other sparring partner, Michael Medina, also did four rounds with Pacquiao last Saturday, and took some solid shots from the pound-for-pound champion that he looked ready to go as well.
A couple more sparring partners are coming in with reigning WBA super-welterweight champ Amir Khan probably on the way to Manila as of presstime, and Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. on standby.
Pacquiao has always done so well in sparring, even when Roach threw taller, bigger partners at him. He had a couple of boxers bloodied in his previous camps, and yesterday he was all over Tapia.
Still, Roach said Pacquiao is far from tip-top shape.
“The direction I want him to move is a little better. The stuff we were doing yesterday came through today. He’s not 100 percent; we still have a long way to go,” Ted Lerner of Ring Magazine quoted Roach as saying.
“We’re just beginning to get the game plan down and get the timing and so forth. He did what I wanted him to do a couple of times. It’s a work in progress,” added Lerner, embedded in the Pacquiao camp.
Roach said if Pacquiao fought today, chances are he’d lose, but that won’t really happen in November.
“If that Manny Pacquiao went into a fight, we’d probably lose. But that’s why we have an eight-week training camp, so we can improve. You can’t expect too much out of a guy who hasn’t been in the ring since last March,” Lerner wrote.
Roach said Pacquiao was at 50 to 60 percent of himself when they arrived in Baguio more than a week ago, and said the Pinoy icon should be close to 90 percent before they fly to Los Angeles later this month.
Roach said Team Pacquiao should be in LA on Oct. 23, a Saturday, so Pacquiao could rest the whole of Sunday before plunging back into training the following day.
The truth hurts so much more than a Pacquiao cross. A perfectly timed punch delivered with the exact amount of speed and power may knock you out cold as it did the pride of Hyde Ricky Hatton in Vegas twice but the truth is something else. It digs deeper into your conscience and saps your self esteem and gradually destroys you. The truth is like a phantom punch with a stigma.
If I was the most hardcore Antonio Margarito fan in the world these days I would have a difficulty in dealing with honesty. This is not in reference to the hand wrapping issue prior to the Mosley fight in the past which Margarito has vehemently denied any knowledge of. I’m talking about the hurt the truth shall bring come November. If I was that kind of fan I would know how it feels by this time how die-hard Manny Pacquiao fans felt years ago when the word Pacnut had been coined to describe that all-out, blinded following to their Pound 4 Pound idol, except that there isn’t a word I know of that describes Margarito’s hardcore fans. May I suggest the word Margatonto? Or, how about, Cheatolava? Nevertheless, if I was a blinded fan of the Tijuana Tornado who follows him like a worker ant and truly believes at this point that a victory over the Pacman is imminent, Honesty must have been tucked in somewhere in the dark corners of my room and the only way to evade it when I’m all alone in bed at night is to have some of those Tequila Gold shots with a pinch of salt and lemon to boost my confidence and numb the pain. Now I wonder why coach Robert Garcia sounded so confident in stating that they are going to shock the world when they fight Manny come November. Isn’t that phrase a cliché already?
Behold the truth!
Antonio Margarito is a rugged edifice built on technical faults. He has not fought for a year after being suspended when he was found to have loaded up his wraps and his last fight was far from interesting in a ten round match that ended in a Unanimous Decision in his favor against Roberto Garcia whom Freddie Roach described as a nice guy who just couldn’t fight. Margarito at best is more hittable than Oscar Dela Hoya. He has practically no defense and just keeps on coming forward that way, and if he continues to do that he will become Manny’s perfect fodder, who thinks Margarito is so slow he throws a punch on Tuesday and lands it on Friday if it ever lands on anything at all with Pacquiao ducking and weaving, firing back with combinations in between.
I do not believe that speed is something the Tijuana Tornado can substantially increase at this point in his career but if he intends to have a shot and stay in the game against the Pacman he must build up some defense while he continues what he does best, which is to hurl so many punches. He must cut the ring more effectively to put on the pressure as the bigger guy, and I hear he’s been working hard on his leg work, and keep his punches crisp and snap it, snap it back up to protect him from counters, instead of his usual looping shots that takes so much travel time to reach its target. He may as well give Manny that feeling of confidence in the first few rounds as he tends to showboat and fool around, lead him to a trap and work on it. Who knows what could transpire from there? But all these are easier said than done, and the chances of a 32 year old fighter changing his game makes this even tougher. From an objective point of view it is so difficult to imagine Margarito pulling off an upset against the Manny Pacquiao we’re all accustomed to seeing fight- a guy blessed with natural hand speed, speedy footwork, devastating power in both hands, decent defense, unfathomable energy reserve, etc… all a Margarito fan has at this point is hope rather than factual basis for victory… and that is the painful truth.
BAGUIO City—Celebrated trainer-coach Freddie Roach allayed fears on reports that the leg injury Manny Pacquiao suffered two weeks ago while jogging near his residence in Sta. Rosa, Laguna had worsened.
“There is really nothing to worry about. Everything is under control,” Roach said.
“It might still be hurting, but I’m sure it’s not that serious as some people think,” Roach added after Pacquiao, who is gunning for an eighth title in as many divisions against Mexican Antonio Margarito for the World Boxing Organization super-welterweight crown on Nov. 13 at the Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas did not do his usual morning run for the third time since arriving here nine days ago.
The Filipino pound-for-pound king also canceled his roadwork last Saturday, but Roach said Pacquiao did not appear to be hurting when they did 14 rounds of the mitts later that day. Pacquiao also sparred with the lanky Michael Medina for four rounds.
“Yesterday (Monday), I gave him 16 rounds with the mitts and we ended up as if nothing serious was going on,” Roach said, adding he will still give the reigning WBO junior-welterweight champion the benefit of the doubt by allowing him to play basketball, which observers blame as the major reason why his (Pacquiao’s) leg continues to hurt.
Since setting foot here, Pacquiao and members of his team have been playing basketball almost nightly after training.
“I have been saying this time and again and I’m saying this again. We have a deal that he’ll stop playing basketball in the last month of our preparation and I expect him to respect that, as he had been doing the past several fights” Roach said.
“He really loves and is happy playing basketball as he loves boxing. If he’s happy, he gives me everything I ask him so that’s been our arrangement. He can play the game as long as he wants to, but when I say stop, he’ll have to stop, ‘” he said.
Roach said Pacquiao has already consulted a doctor, who prescribed massaging and applying ice on the injured leg every morning. He said he had no doubts that the injury will be completely healed in the next few days.
The trainer also said that Pacquiao wearing a leather shoe as part of his attire as congressman may have contributed to the pain the Filipino experiences from time to time during training.
“He’s not used to that kind of footwear (leather shoes), so his heels somewhat swelled. It aggravated when he jogged for a few miles inside the subdivision where his family residence is located,” Roach added.
Yesterday, Pacquiao proved skeptics wrong when he arrived on the dot for his 2 p.m. workout at the Shape Up Gym inside the Cooyessan Hotel along Naguillian Road to get ready for his sparring sessions against Medina and Glenn Tapia. Eddie Alinea
BAGUIO CITY – “It’s under control. There’s nothing to worry about.”
This was how trainer Freddie Roach reacted to fears made by some sectors as to the extent of Manny Pacquiao’s leg injury suffered two weeks ago while jogging in a posh subdivision in Santa Rosa in Laguna.
“It might still be hurting, but I’m sure it’s not that serious as some people think,” Roach told this writer yesterday after the seven-division world boxing champion, again, cancelled his schedule roadwork.
It was at least the third time that that phase of his training in preparation for his November 13 World Boxing Council superwelterweight championship fight with Mexican Antonio Margarito had been put off since his team arrived here nine days ago.
Last Saturday, Pacquiao, likewise, cancelled his roadwork set at the city’s Burnham Park due to his aching left heel, but Roach attested his ward didn’t show any trace of the pain in the subsequent 14-round work with the mitts later that day when he also sparred with lanky Michael Medina for four rounds.
“Yesterday (Monday), I gave him 16 rounds with the mitts and we ended up as if nothing serious was going on,” the multi-awarded mentor assured, adding he will still give the reigning WBO welterweight titlist the benefit of the doubt by allowing him to play basketball, which many blame for the slow process of recuperation.
Since setting his foot here, Pacquiao and his team have been playing the game almost nightly after training.
The 1976 Montreal Olympics U.S. boxing team alternate bared that the problem started when the Pacman attended Congressional Session wearing a brand new leather shoes.
Pacquiao was elected congressman in the last election representing the lone district of his wife Jinkee’s home of Sarangani and has dividing his time attending sessions and training the past two weeks.
“I have been saying this time and again and I’m saying this again. We have a deal that he’ll stop playing basketball in the last month of our preparation and I expect him to respect that, as he had been doing the past several fights” he said.
“He really loves and is happy playing basketball as he loves boxing. If he’s happy, he gives me everything I ask him so that’s been our arrangement. He can play the game as long as he wants to, but when I say stop, he’ll have to stop, ‘” he said.
Roach said Pacquiao has already consulted a doctor, who prescribed massaging and applying ice on the injured leg every morning. He said he had no doubt that the injury will be completely healed in that four-month span.
“He’s not used to that kind of footwear so his heels somewhat swelled. It aggravated when he jogged for a few miles inside the subdivision his family residence is located,” he recalled.
Yesterday, Pacquiao himself proved the skeptics wrong when he arrived on the dot at his 2 p.m. workout at the Shape Up Gym inside the Cooyessan Hotel along Naguillian Road which he and his team call home in his scheduled four-week stay in this, the county’s summer capital.
He was supposed to work at least seven rounds against Medina and Glen Tapia whom Roach personally picked as sparring mates for reason that both fight like Margarito does.
Tuesday, October 5, 2010
Pound for pound king Manny Pacquiao's November 13th clash with Antonio Margarito at the Dallas Cowboys stadium in Texas is still seen by many as something of an easy fight.
Predictions of very early finishes are rife, and even the bookmakers seem to think that the most likely outcome is a knockout win for Pacquiao before the end of the tenth round.
Part of this is down to the fact that Margarito has had a shaky couple of years with his suspension and bad performances either side of it. Part of it is down to the fact that Pacquiao has thoroughly dominated all of his recent opponents, and has never really been pushed in a fight for several years.
Despite the fact that he is making fast progress during training though, and according to sparring partners is growing steadily sharper and stronger, Pacman trainer Freddie Roach has begun to close the gym during some sparring sessions, which is likely for several reasons.
The reason Roach gave to Ring correspondent Ted Lerner is that Pacquiao tends to showboat when the crowds and media are watching, which understandably he wants to keep to a minimum.
All four of Pacquiao's sparring partners tower over him and if his concentration isn't where it needs to be there is a danger of either getting caught with a big punch or getting cut, both of which could set his training schedule back.
Another similar concern that Roach might have had about the usual crowds filling the gym is that he has instructed Pacquiao's sparring partners, namely Julio Chavez Jr, Glen Tapia, Vanes Martirosyan and Michael Medina to use rough house tactics and to fight in a similar way to Margarito.
At this early stage of the training camp, and against much bigger fighters, this may well result in Pacquiao taking more punishment than usual or than he would towards the end of a training camp when in full fighting shape.
If regular reports went out that Pacquiao was taking a lot of punishment in training, fans might begin to question whether or not he will be able to deal with Margarito on fight night, and the fact that he now has a second career as a politician would again be called into question. Neither of which are things conducive to making Pacquiao confident and focused for November.
Tactical reasons for closing the gym to the public on certain days aren't that likely given that Margarito has historically been fairly easy to prepare for. He technical ability will never be confused with Floyd Mayweather's, but what Margarito does, he does well, and most of his opponents have struggled with him as a result.
Most of all, the fact that Roach is being more strict than usual with Pacquiao's training means that he is taking Margarito as a serious threat. Despite his usual prediction of an easy win for Pacquiao, which he tends to make as much to unsettle or irritate opponents as anything else, Roach knows it will be a tough fight.
If nothing else, Margarito has a great chin and a lot of size on Pacquiao, and will be more motivated than ever. Those attributes coupled with a new trainer he works well with, and this could be Pacquiao's toughest fight since he last took on Juan Manuel Marquez.
Bobby Guilimen, Philly: "Mayweather more or less has to fight the winner if he wants people to ever take him seriously again, and he's terrified of both"
Renton Draugtner, Pittsburgh: "I still can't see this lasting the distance, Pacquiao wins inside ten rounds"
It is customary for true competitors to relish opportunities to go up against the best. Although some do duck and dodge, but true winners are those who can only find real value in the level of competition associated with victory. Well, Antonio Margarito's trainer Roberto Garcia is no stranger to competition; He is after all a former World Super Featherweight Champion. I can still recall his classic battle with the much bigger and superior Diego Coralles and how the tough and feisty Garcia gave him all that he could handle when he kept coming forward and rocked the late boxing great only to come up short in the end. Garcia relishes competition, and would never quit or pull a Dela Hoya at the first sign of defeat. He is what a true Mexican Warrior in every sense of the distinction.
So it isn't a surprise that the 35-year-old trainer from Oxnard, California is bringing the same fiery and competitive mindset when he guides his ward Margarito into battle against the best fighter in the planet as of the moment. Not only that, Garcia is chomping at the bit to go head-to-head anew with the man who is widely considered as the best boxing trainer of this era in Freddie Roach. I spoke to Garcia recently and this is what he had to say about facing Pacquiao and Roach:
"I've had a couple of fighters fight fighters trained by Freddie Roach, for me I consider it a big challenge going up against the best trainer in the world, because for me I consider him the best trainer in the world and he's proved it with Manny Pacquiao, with Amir Khan and he's made Chavez Jr. look great, so he is a great trainer but both times I've gone against him with fighters he trained, I beat him and now this is the real test: Margarito against Pacquiao. Pacquiao is the man, not only for Margarito, but also for me. I'm also excited about it. Not only am I studying Manny Pacquiao, I'm also studying Freddie Roach. I already have an idea how he thinks, how he works, so all that is going to be working in our advantage. I know very few people give us a chance but we will prove everybody wrong on November 13. We are going there and show that were in there for the long run, for a good win and hopefully be a champion after that."
Margarito and Garcia both have a lot to prove while Pacquiao and Roach have been the staple of excellence for quite some time now. We definitely know which camp will be more motivated coming into November 13, but will it be enough to upset this era's best boxer-trainer tandem? Like former Dallas Cowboy Terrell Owens said, "get you popcorns ready". And this Texas gunfight will definitely be nothing like the one-sided snoozer Pacquiao-Clottey turned out to be last March.
What's the definition of afraid? - 1. scared, fearful, disquieted, apprehensive, timid, timorous. Afraid, alarmed, frightened, terrified all indicate a state of fear. Recently Antonio Margarito went on the record and said that he's not worried about Manny Pacquiao at all. He said that's he is not worried, and he's more focused on knocking Manny out. Oh really? Well that's all well and good, but what he is focused on and what's going to happen are two entirely different scenarios.
Pacquiao is currently in the Philippines training like a beast and according to my sources, he means business. Pacquiao has been the recipient of racial attacks, accused of taking steroids, and has been dragged through the mud by team Mayweather for months now. He's not in a good mood about all of that, so if I were Antonio Margarito I would keep that in mind. Pacquiao is not the type of guy that stoops down to a lower level. Manny handles his business in the ring with his two fists. He's proved this time and time again, and this November 13th, it will more than likely be no different.
Mayweather denies racial attacks - Read that here
Margarito is going to have a plate full come November 13th, and he's not going to know what to do with it. He actually won't have much choice once the bell rings. I can almost guarantee that Tony's face will be swollen and bloodied by the 5th or 6th round because he does not move his head fast enough, and he stands in front of his opponents. Standing in front of Manny Pacquiao is like standing in front of a shotgun with birdshot loaded in it. Margarito will be peppered with nasty punches from multiple angles.
I don't see how Margarito will be able to deal with the speed of Pacquiao. When you fight Pacquiao you are guaranteed to face a ton of punches, very fast punches, and punches in bunches from crazy angles. Of course the one and only chance that Margarito has is if he can catch Manny with something on the way in. This theory has been tossed around with most of Manny's previous opponents though. Each time Manny fights a bigger guy, the writers including yours truly mention that Manny has to be careful of bouncing in on a larger guy. Freddie and Manny both knows of this danger, and will be prepared.
One of the things that makes Pacquiao such a dangerous fighters is having the great Freddie Roach in his corner. The two men have shared this journey together, and both have benefited from hard work and preparation. Roach will have Manny ready, and on the flip, Manny will execute the plan.
OK, so what do my fellow Mississippians say about this match? I posed it to a few fans this past weekend in Jackson. I stopped by a few gyms in Jackson and tossed this topic around. Not one person predicted a victory for Margarito, and each person had the same theory. As the great NFL former Oakland Raiders coach John Madden said, "Speed kills" and speed will do in Margarito too. Timothy Barber of Jackson, MS said it best, " This fight Vs. Margarito will remind Floyd Mayweather why he chose to duck Pacquiao."
Speed + conditioning + Roach ='s a knocked out or soundly defeated Antonio Margarito.
RING correspondent Ted Lerner is in Baguio City, a mountain town in the Philippines, as Manny Pacquiao opens training camp for his Nov. 13 fight against Antonio Margarito. This is Part III in a three-part series.
BAGUIO CITY, Philippines -- Freddie Roach says that he likes to conduct Manny Pacquiao’s sparring sessions in private, not because he’s trying to hide anything in particular from the always-prying eyes of the press, but because Pacquiao tends to showboat when people are watching.
“I want him to concentrate on the task at hand,” Roach said just before Pacquiao’s second sparring session of camp on Saturday.
But just as about a dozen members of the press and a few other hangers on were about to get the proverbial boot from the Shape Up Gym, somebody on Team Pacquiao decided that everyone could stay and watch Pacquiao face sparring partner Michael Medina for their four-round session.
“Stand back here and no pictures or videos please,” said Pacquiao’s chief personal adviser and assistant, Michael Koncz, while pointing to a spot about 10 feet from ringside. Moments later, with the small crowd on hand hushed and glued to the ring, the gym bell rang, and Pacquiao and Medina, both clad in protective headgear and groin protectors, began to get it on.
Mimicking the style of Pacquiao’s upcoming opponent, Antonio Margarito, Medina plodded forward and immediately started attacking the much smaller Filipino, who came up to Medina’s chin. The two engaged in some spirited exchanges. At times Pacquiao stood and fought back, and other times he landed blinding combinations then spun and moved away. The action got extremely fierce in the second round as the two wrestled and exchanged punches toe to toe. When the round ended, the wide eyed audience spontaneously erupted into applause.
The final two rounds continued in similar fashion. Pacquiao was breathing heavily, but he continued darting in and out, feinting, then throwing various combinations, all the while having to contend with the rough tactics of Medina. Pacquiao landed some huge shots, a few from almost impossible angles, but he also stood and exchanged and took a few big punches as well. When the bell for the final round sounded, the two hugged and touched gloves, while the crowd once again applauded.
My initial reaction when it all ended was much different from my observations when Pacquiao worked the mitts with Roach the previous day. On the mitts, Pacquiao is dazzling and downright scary, displaying ferocious power and lightning speed. He also brings these traits to sparring, and indeed watching him up close can leave you breathless. But it all appeared different with Pacquiao in there against a big scrapping dude who was willing to mix it up. As the fighters got toweled off and removed their gloves, Nov. 13 suddenly became crystal clear. Assuming Margarito brings his “A” game into the ring, this fight is going to be a big time war.
“It’s going to be real aggressive and physical,” said Pacquiao’s strength and conditioning coach Alex Ariza afterward. “And I think that’s what Michael brought today. Hopefully Manny chooses not to stand in front of Margarito and let him do that. The thing is Manny’s got balls. He’s not a runner by nature, he’s a fighter by nature. At some point Manny’s going to say, ‘Let’s get it on.’ He does that with everyone. He’s not going to take a step back. Margarito’s not going to step back. That’s when the fireworks will start.”
Roach liked what he saw, but admitted his boy is not quite at the level he wants.
“The timing was a little better,” Roach said. “The direction I want him to move is a little better. The stuff we were doing yesterday came through today. He’s not 100 percent; we still have a long way to go. We’re just beginning to get the game plan down and get the timing and so forth. He did what I wanted him to do a couple of times. It’s a work in progress. If that Manny Pacquiao went into a fight, we’d probably lose. But that’s why we have an eight-week training camp, so we can improve. You can’t expect too much out of a guy who hasn’t been in the ring since last March.”
Although the main game plan for Margarito is to make sure Pacquiao doesn’t stand and make himself a target, Roach said it’s not always about being elusive.
“Sometimes we will take him to the ropes to set him up also. We’ll walk him into a power shot. It’s a fine line,” Roach said.
The 24-year-old Medina admitted that he was very nervous before getting in the ring for the first time with Pacquiao, but he was generally happy with his performance. His observations of the four-round scrap offer insights into Pacquiao’s style.
“I knew I needed to bring a little toughness in the sparring,” Medina said, “because he’s going to fight Margarito, and talking to Freddie he told me a little bit of things he wanted me to do inside the ring so I tried it out. His footwork was incredible, his punching speed was good. It was a good experience. I gave him hard work, and that’s what I came here for. He got me a couple of times. I didn’t feel stunned. I tried to move a little bit. He countered with some left hands to the body. I think I got him with a couple of right hands too. The thing is his footwork was incredible. He was moving one way to another, doing those angles that he is a master at. It’s an awkward style. He throws a punch then he moves, he has good waist movement, he moves his head. He doesn’t wait there to get hit. He hits you, he moves away, he throws another combination, then he’s out. To beat Manny Pacquiao I think you have to be fast, you have to be tough, you have to have a lot of things to be able to hit him back.
“I expect Margarito to come and try and rough him up and try to hit him. I can tell right now that Manny Pacquiao can take a punch. Because I was throwing a couple of bombs in there, and he took them like a man and came back throwing more punches. I know this is going to be a tough fight. But the way I see the skill and footwork, he should be able to outbox Margarito in the late rounds. He (Pacquiao) has the perfect leverage, the perfect technique for throwing a punch. Like Mike Tyson, he had that perfect technique. That’s why he was knocking everybody out. It’s the same with Manny Pacquiao."
Medina (24-2-2) also can make a fascinating comparison with authority: He sparred with Floyd Mayweather Jr. in his preparations for Oscar de La Hoya 3½ years ago.
“He’s [Mayweather] a great fighter,” Medina said. “They’re both pound for pound, and they both proved that to me. Mayweather was the same kind of thing: I was in there trying to rough him up in the ring, trying to make it hard for him. But he’s pretty fast, quick with his hands. Mayweather has a different technique when he throws the punches. Mayweather snaps the punches, he’s too fast, he’s got perfect timing. Pacquiao has a little bit more strength and more body into those punches and he’s fast too.
“The thing is, Mayweather is more of a calm fighter. He will look for those counter punches and try to frustrate you. Manny will try to outbox you and do those lateral movements. Plus he’s southpaw, so it’s even a little harder.”
So who would win if and when the two greats decide to fight?
“Right now, after I just got down from the sparring with Manny Pacquiao, it just make me want to see that fight even more,” he said. “Now I know that’s going to be a great fight. They’re both excellent fighters. I think Manny Pacquiao has the fierceness, he’s attacks, he’s strong and he’s very smart. Mayweather has that perfect technique where he’s never exposed. He throws a punch and he’s always protected.
“It’s going to be a tough fight for both of them. It’s going to be Pacquiao trying to break down that defense and Mayweather trying to counterpunch. It’s super difficult to predict. “
Pacquiao can’t just leave the gym after his grueling workout. He first has to satisfy the media and his wide-eyed fans, which he does without complaint.
About 30 people poured into the gym after sparring and watched Pacquiao complete his workout on the speed bag, jumping rope, sit ups and then stretching. When he finally finished, he climbed out of the ring and faced a media scrum for 20 minutes. Then he sat on a bench by himself, sending text messages, making a few calls, while a wall of fans with cameras and cell phones stood 10 feet away. Occasionally, people would get past their fear and ask Pacquaio for a picture or an autograph. When he stood up and headed for the door, he was immediately surrounded by a circle of fans. He never turned down anyone.
It took Pacquiao nearly an hour from the end of his workout to finally leave the gym. Followed by an entourage of about 10 people, he walked out the back door of the gym and down the hall of the Cooneysean Plaza mall, past the elevator and up a back stair well, hopping up two steps at a time for two levels until he finally reached his hotel room on the third floor.
Pacquiao is booked into a large suite for the month. In the living area, several people lounged on the couch watching TV. On the table in the kitchen, a spread of Filipino dishes waited to be devoured. Inside his bedroom, Pacquiao leaned on his bed with his back up against the headboard and his legs spread wide in front of him. He looked exhausted but relaxed, happy to have his workout over.
Next to his laptop on his bedside table, an assistant delivered a huge tray of food; Bulalo (beef shank and bone marrow in an onion broth), pork adobo and plenty of white rice. Pacquiao didn’t eat right away, perhaps letting his stomach settle down after his workout. He was more focused on the TV, which was tuned to a national channel that broadcasts direct from the Philippines Congress. The Appropriations Committee was conducting its afternoon session.
“I’m on this committee,” Pacquiao said. “I know that lady. She’s the chairman. This committee has the money.”
He laughed when he said that and then related how he is now a member of 12 committees in the Congress. “But my main focus is on energy.” Pacquiao then told of a recent energy committee hearing during which he questioned a government secretary who was involved in approving a coal fired power plant for his province of Sarangani before Pacquiao became a congressman. Pacquiao admitted that his province, like the rest of Mindanao, is in desperate need of energy sources as they are experiencing up to 12 hours of power outages a day.
“But I am also an environmentalist,” said Pacquiao, still dressed in his workout clothes. “This kind of power plant is not good for our people. We need power, but we want clean power. Like hydro, bio gas, wind.
“I said, ‘Sir, we are very concerned that this coal fired plant will be very bad for our people,’” Pacquiao said with a smile. “The secretary said, ‘We have a new technology that will make it clean.’ I said, ‘Sir, can you tell us how this technology works?’ He said, ‘No, but I’m sure it will work.’ I said, ‘Sir, you are promising us that it will be clean but you can’t tell us how it works? You must do your homework first before you come here.’”
The handful of people in the room laughed out loud with Pacquiao.
“We have recalled all the papers and contracts for that project,” Pacquiao said, noting that he will do everything in his power to stop the construction of the plant from proceeding.
The idea that he now sits on 12 congressional committees, and mixes this in with all the other activities he loves to do, was mind boggling. Pacquiao said that he juggles his many commitments with good time management.
Just a few moments around Pacquiao makes it very clear that he’s a master at it. While sitting on his bed, Pacquiao not only followed the congressional hearings, he also did a live interview via cell phone on nationwide television, wishing his daughter happy birthday. Then Koncz, his advisor, walked in and showed Manny a contract. Some friends came in and then they started up an animated conversation about the popular computer game, Plants and Zombies. Apparently Pacquiao plays the game relentlessly on his laptop. Then one of Pacquiao’s friends handed over an Ipad and Pacquiao’s eyes lit up as he tried out his favorite game.
Then it was time to eat. Afterward, Ariza came in with Pacquiao’s protein shake. A few more tasks, some more greetings to well wishers, then it was downstairs to tape an interview. Later he would head six hours to Manila to make a speech before the Philippine Military Academy, then meet up with his daughter who was celebrating her third birthday. He would drive back the next day to Baguio to resume training on Monday.
From the seriousness of public policy making to the silliness of Plants and Zombies and everything possible in between, all the while preparing relentlessly for one of the biggest battles of his life. There’s not much Manny Pacquiao can’t do.
Some people still believe the world is flat.
Many of them also probably think that Antonio Margarito's corner is in a strategic mismatch against Coach Freddie Roach, Manny Pacquiao's Svengali.
To the contrary, because I'm among those who believe that former IBF junior lightweight champion Robert Garcia is the Next Generation successor to Roach.
Roach turned age 50 on March 5 while Garcia became 35 on Jan. 29.
Apparently, Filipino Flash Nonito Doniare agrees, since he is being tutored by the Oxnard, California, ex-fighter.
Many don't know Garcia's early background as I do, having been his co-manager when he was a world champ. "Grandpa" was practically raised in the confines of La Colonia Boxing Gym by his father, Eduardo.
Poppa G took two skinny kids, his son and one named Fernando Vargas and brought them to world titles.
The innate toughness of Robert must come from his father who wound up in Oxnard because he was a migrant worker, whose hands bled every day from picking fruit, mainly strawberries, in the fields.
So there's no worry about Robert's work ethic.
Garcia and Margarito seem to have a certain chemistry working for them in the runup to the Pacman bout Nov. 13 at Cowboys Stadium. It's a natural fit since they literally speak the same language and both know what it takes to become a world champion.
But Margarito is meeting a monster in peak career Pacquiao.
Garcia got crunched when he ran into a whilrwind named Diego "Chico" Corrales.
In compiling a 34-3 pro record with 25 KOs, his only other losses were to Joel Casamayor and Ben Tackie.
One of Garcia's most impressive outings came against Cuban toughie Ramon Ledon in Atlantic City in 1998.
Garcia, floored in round two, bounced back twice deck and stop Ledon in the fifth round.
Even against the great Corrales, who dwarfed him in size, Garcia was competitive, trailing on two cards and being even up on the third when the bout was halted in the seventh round.
Yes, Corrales was the much bigger man when he fought Robert just like Antonio is the much bigger man in the ring with Manny.
The Garcia fistic tradition doesn't end with "Grandpa."
His older brother, Danny, is training hot contender Vicious Victor Ortiz and we might have a brother in opposite corners bout forthcoming if and when Golden Boy's Ortiz tries to settle a feud with Robert Garcia-trained, Top Rank prospect Brandon Rios.
(Rios and Ortiz both used to live in Garden City, Kansas, of all places.)
Roach obviously knows his fighter better than Robert does Tone Loc. This is the second time Garcia has handled his fellow Mexicano. Garcia was in the TJ Tornado's corner in a meaningless tuneup bout against a Roberto Garcia (no relation to the trainer).
But a mismatch of trainers?
I don't think so. His guy may lose but Garcia is up to the task and I'm convinced his fighter will make a strong showing, win, lose or draw.
Wouldn't that be crazy?
MANILA, Philippines — As he had promised, Manny Pacquiao returned to his high-altitude training camp in Baguio City on Sunday night in time for another punishing session under the watchful eyes of top trainer Freddie Roach and conditioning coach Alex Ariza on Monday afternoon.
Pacquiao bolted out Baguio Saturday afternoon after bringing sparring partner Michael Medina to school in their four-round encounter at the Cooyeesan Hotel so he could fulfill a speaking engagement in Metro Manila and spend some time with his daughter Princess, who had just turned four.
Roach had given him the go-signal to take a break after Pacquiao assured him that he will be back the next day as the build-up for the Nov. 13 clash with Antonio Margarito is fast approaching.
Pacquiao honored his word, got back in Baguio around 8 p.m. and did his morning roadwork in Sta. Lucia Village on Monday, far and away from the maddening crowd at Burnham Park.
Since Monday is a non-sparring day, Pacquiao’s morning jog was tough as he had to do it in inclined roads.
But on sparring days – Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays – Pacquiao will do his roadwork on the flat surface of Burnham Park, a favorite destination and meeting point among locals and tourists alike.
Pacquiao has sparred a total of eight rounds since kicking off his first session with Glen Tapia of the Dominican Republic. Last Saturday, it was the turn of Michael Medina of Mexico.
Ariza said that while Pacquiao toyed with Medina the first time, he (Medina) will only “get better” in the coming sparring days.
Tapia, who is 5-foot-10, and Medina, 5-foot-11, and who fights very much like Margarito, have been in the country since Sept. 20.
Meanwhile, Bob Arum is arriving in the country on Oct. 16, in time for a media day that he and Pacquiao will host on Oct. 18 in Baguio.
"That should be a huge event," said Arum, who will be joined by her stepdaughter Dena DuBoef and Mexican promoter Fernando Beltran.
Arum is very pleased that Pacquiao has been pretty impressive in his training.
Sunday, October 3, 2010
In a practice session in his private boxing gym in Baguio City, Philippines this weekend in preparation for his November fight with Mexico's Antonio Margarito in Dallas, Texas, Representative Manny Pacquiao of Sarangani, Philippines show off his jumping prowess reaching the ceiling of the gym to highlight the strength in his legs to the serious observation of trainer Freddie Roach and conditioning trainer Alex Ariza. Photo: PINOY GONZALES/ PNS.
MANILA, Philippines – Boxing champion Manny Pacquiao had another 4-round sparring session on Saturday, this time against a taller fighter who ended up with a slight bruise on his face.
The 6-foot Michael Medina sustained a small bruise over his left eye due to his exchanges with Pacquiao at the Cooyesan Sports Complex in Baguio City.
"He was fast and strong,” said the Mexican Medina, who is helping Pacquiao prepare for his bout against a taller boxer from Mexico, Antonio Margarito.
“I gave him my best work. I tried to go forward and tried to fight like Margarito," said Medina, a professional boxer with 24 wins under his belt.
Pacquiao said he is happy with his training, and that he has learned a lot about how to fight taller guys like Medina.
Pacquiao said the sparring sessions will definitely help him evade Margarito’s “pressure attack”.
"Reach advantage [ni Margarito] ay first concern…kailangan lang naka-focus [kung] paano counterin. (Reach advantage is my first concern… we need to focus on how to counter-punch),” said the reigning World Boxing Organization (WBO) welterweight champion.
His trainer, Freddie Roach, is also pleased with how his prized fighter adjusted against Medina.
However, he said they still have work to do, and the techniques that will be employed have to be perfected.
"It takes time to get everything back to timing," said the boxing coach.
Saturday's session was made in full view of his fans and several media people. The attendees, however, were prohibited from taking pictures and videos.
The night before Saturday’s sparring session, Pacquiao again played basketball and showed no indication of the leg pain he earlier complained of.
He had also skipped jogging on Saturday morning because of the bad weather in Baguio City.
Prior to Medina, Pacquiao sparred with 5’11” Glen Tapia, who wields a strong right hand like Margarito.
Tapia admitted that he was impressed with Pacquiao’s ability to circle away from his opponents.
“What people don’t know, he’ll throw his punches and turn, and then he will hit you some more,” he said in a report by Examiner.com. (Click here for related story).
Pacquiao will take a day off on Sunday. He will be going to Manila for a speaking engagement in Camp Aguinaldo in Quezon City.