Juan Manuel Marquez shocked the world when he knocked out Manny Pacquiao. For whatever reason, that single event seemed to shatter everything folks already knew about both men.
Over the past 72 hours, it’s been non-stop panic and nonsensical babble about where everyone involved goes from here.
Let’s be real here: it isn’t that big of a deal.
Marquez consistently challenged Pacquiao in their prior three fights, proving to be the ideal kryptonite to his rival's preferred fighting style. His solid footwork and nearly perfect counterpunching could have won him at least one of their other showdowns, and the addition of power (however he came by it) proved to be the difference. A counterpuncher like Marquez with the power to knock his foe out cold is unstoppable.
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So, yes, Marquez beat Pacquiao with a stunning KO – but there is a reason that Marquez was nowhere near the underdog in this one that he was in past matches.
It’s not that shocking he won.
In terms of what this means for a possible Dream Match between Pacquiao and Floyd Maywearther, well, it means nothing. It means absolutely, positively nothing. Mayweather has long since been recognized as the favorite in a potential bout between the pair, and this weekend’s happenings would just make him a bigger favorite. As far as the ridiculous notion that somehow people wouldn’t pay to see this fight because it no longer pits the top two pound-for-pounders in the world against one another; that hasn’t been the case for at least a year now.
Pacquiao’s decline was evident last November against Marquez. It became even more apparent when he couldn’t KO a broken, hobbled Timothy Bradley. And, of course, it was reaffirmed this weekend.
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We didn’t need to see Pacquiao get knocked out cold to know that he isn’t the fighter he was three years ago. Neither is Mayweather. His struggle for much of the fight against Miguel Cotto proves that.
People still wanted to see them square off, though.
Here is the reality of what everything that happened means for a potential Pacquiao vs. Mayweather fight: nothing.
Last week, as noted on Opposing Views, it was made clear that Mayweather intended to fight twice in 2013.
"Floyd has told us that he is fighting twice in 2013 with the first date being May 4 -- Cinco De Mayweather -- and the second date being Sept. 14," Leonard Ellerbe told the press.
"Mayweather Promotions is looking forward to these two gigantic Floyd Mayweather events in 2013, and we are in ongoing discussions with our promotional partner, Richard Schaefer (chief executive of Golden Boy Promotions) in finalizing the opponent and other aspects of the upcoming promotion."
One of those fights will unquestionably come against Saul “Canelo” Alvarez; the other is up in the air. If the Canelo fight occurs on May 4 (as it should), then that leaves Sept. 14 open for a fight against Robert Guerrero or Pacquiao.
Mayweather vs. Canelo is clearly more appealing than Mayweather vs. Pacquiao at this point, however, there is a debate to be had regarding Guerrero. Would seeing Mayweather beat down Guerrero if he beats Alvarez really generate as much interest as seeing him take on Pacquiao? Nope. And Mayweather knows that. He’s too smart not to. (Of course, if Mayweather fights Guerrero in May, then this discussion may be completely moot.)
Either way, though, this weekend changed nothing in the grand scheme of things. It just gave Pacquiao fans a lot less to brag about.