|09-09-2007, 10:07 PM||#1|
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: icy undertow
Pacquiao Can Be Another Sugar Ray Robinson
PACQUIAO CAN BE ANOTHER SUGAR RAY ROBINSON
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Freddie Roach and his prized possession Manny Pacquiao have begun to take a fresh look at the strategy and tactics that must go into their fight plan against Mexican legend Marco Antonio Barrera when they clash at the Mandalay Bay Resort Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas on October 6.
Viva Sports/Viva Prime which is producing a two-part pre-fight special on the fight entitled “Repeat or Revenge” which will be telecast over RPN 9 on September 23 and 30 at 4:00 p.m. presented by Tanduay, the No.1 Rhum, Pagcor and PCSO has chronicled the training camp “ Up Close and Personal” and has begun to feel the urgency and determination in Pacquiao’s training camp.
Pacquiao’s Chief-of-Staff Jake Joson says they have imposed a 9:00 p.m. curfew for visitors while we were informed that Ilocus Sur governor Luis “Chavit” Singson has quietly made sure that Pacquiao, who occasionally likes to try his luck at the poker table at the casino located in the Waterfront Hotel, doesn’t gamble anymore and is not allowed to enter Casino Filipino.
With Pacquiao’s amazingly quick recovery from a weekend bout with the flu which caused some subdued concern in Roach and worried WBC president Jose Sulaiman who told us he was “very, very happy” to know that Manny had recovered and was back in training. Sulaiman in an overseas telephone conversation with us from his home in Mexico City predicted that the devastating southpaw was too strong and too fast for the ageing Barrera although he made it clear that the Mexican icon could not be taken lightly.
Obviously both Manny and Freddie are also not taking anything for granted. In fact Roach isn’t relying on the same tactics that Pacquiao used to demolish Barrera in eleven brutal rounds in their first clash at the Alamadone in San Antonio, Texas in November 2003. Together, both mentor and student are working on several new aspects of Pacquiao’s style, both offensively and defensively that will make the Filipino idol, an almost complete fighter in the mould of the fighter many boxing experts believe was the greatest of them all – Sugar Ray Robinson,
Roach told Viva Sports/Manila Standard Today going into this past weekend that he told Pacquiao he “could be as great as Sugar Ray Robinson if he concentrates, uses that speed, uses both hands and puts combinations together.”
Roach said that despite his improvement over the years and his achievements in the ring Pacquiao “is still learning. He can get better.”
There have been a couple of priorities. The first is the right hook which he began to use against Erik “El Terrible” Morales in the second and third fights of their epic trilogy in which Pacquiao smashed the Mexican into submission. Now Roach says “its working better all the time.”
But that’s not the only aspect they are working on. We’ve watched Pacquiao slipping punches like never before and getting under the jab while ripping hooks to the body and doubling up to the side of the head with blinding speed. Roach also revealed that Pacquiao was “moving much better than before, that’s for sure and is a better fighter than he was some six months or one year ago.”
Manny hasn’t had any problem absorbing what Roach is teaching him. As Joson observed “Manny learned the new techniques immediately.” He is also working on a strategy to counter any effort by Barrera to run which is what WBC president Jose Sulaiman says he will do and try to outbox Pacquiao and frustrate him like he did Rocky Juarez and steal a decision.
Pacquiao is ready to cut off the ring and corner Barrera with a variety of devastating punches which have been added to his arsenal.
Roach’s problem is to “hold him back a little bit because I want him to get his strength back first before I let him go.” The eminent trainer’s plan is to build up gradually “to make sure he doesn’t get sick again.”
Last Thursday Roach noted there was “still a little congestion in his chest” when Pacquiao worked out at the gym but added “he was a lot better” after a morning run. Like a pure thoroughbred chewing at the bit and wanting to take off Pacquiao went nine rounds non-stop on the punch mitts and “wanted to go another round“ but Roach said “no.”
Roach said Pacquiao then “wanted to go more rounds on the speed ball I said no.” One of the other happy notes as far as Roach is concerned was that ”Wakee” Salud has kept his promise and cleared the gym so they could train in peace. “No problem, everyone is out.”
Apart from his grueling conditioning routine where he does the killer run up the steep incline of the Alta Vista subdivision road next to the picturesque golf course on his non-sparring days and the flatland speed run at the IT Park opposite the Waterfront on days that he spars, Pacquiao now even throws punches while doing sit-ups.
Picking up tempo Pacquiao sparred nine rounds on Friday and was itching for more but once again Roach stepped in and halted it. Roach was obviously pleased, saying “he did well, he’s getting better everyday.”
Roach once again had a problem with some 25 people who showed up at the gym. Calmly he told us “I threw them all out” because they needed privacy. Saturday was a different story since it was, in Roach’s language, “a light day.”
Pacquiao lightened it up by what Roach described as “a great work out before a bunch of some 40 kids” who were in awe as they watched him train and later sang one of Manny’s popular songs to their idol.
Pacquiao later boarded a private plane of Ilocos Sur governor Luis “Chavit” Singson for a quick weekend trip to Manila to reportedly finalize an agreement with Solar Sports and GMA 7 on the telecast of his rematch with Barrera and to also tape some interviews and to appear on the popular entertainment show of the network – SOP.
Pacquiao was at a news conference announcing his switch from the giant broadcast network ABS-CBN to bitter rivals GMA 7 for which he will star in a sitcom with the extremely popular Rufa Mae and also on other entertainment shows besides having his fights for which the rights have been acquired by Solar Sports, telecast on GMA.
Manny was all smiles when we had a brief interview with him for HBO Sports and didn’t seem to have any qualms of the switch from one network to another even as he pledged he is now part of the Kapuso family and happy to be a part of the family in his new home after being warmly welcomed by another big star Joey de Leon.
In the HBO interview Pacquiao made it clear that his own family – meaning wife Jinkee and their three kids – mean “everything to me” just like the millions of Filipinos. He said “I fight for them because I want to make them happy.”
Roach didn’t object Manny’s weekend trip to Manila because he accepted the reality that its something Pacquiao had to do and he would be back running on Monday morning and working out and pushing himself relentlessly.
Even Jinkee left Cebu City for their home in General Santos City telling us Manny’s training was now moving into a far more serious and important stage and she didn’t want him to have any distractions at all because of the importance of the Barrera rematch. It means the world to millions of Pacquiao fans who are hoping he will repeat the brutal beating inflicted on Barrera in November 2003 and prevent the ageing Mexican from exacting revenge. “Repeat or Revenge” the fight should be a dandy.
|09-09-2007, 10:12 PM||#2|
ESB Jr Member
Join Date: May 2007
Re: Pacquiao Can Be Another Sugar Ray Robinson
Wow sounds like a lot of the talk about Manny under training is complete garbage, and thats great. IF Barrera beats him I would like to think he beat the best Pacquiao as unlikely as it may seem. At this point I'm just hoping this fight doesn't join the long list of cancellations and postponements..
|09-10-2007, 11:56 PM||#3|
ESB Full Member
Join Date: Apr 2007
Re: Pacquiao Can Be Another Sugar Ray Robinson
Pac by debastating KO