It goes without saying that Manny Pacquiao and Juan Manuel Marquez have tremendous respect for one another. You don’t go through everything that they have been through without developing some sort of mutual admiration. No matter what gets said in the lead-up to a fight or after the fact, these two definitely hold each other in high regard.
That being said, respecting someone is not the same thing as acknowledging that they are better than you. And despite the fact that he has racked up a whopping zero total victories against Pacquiao in three separate attempts, Marquez still firmly believes that he is better than his arch rival. How does he explain his three unsuccessful showings? The judges robbed him, of course.
Recently Marquez jotted down some thoughts regarding his third fight against Pacquiao. Here is how he described what happened (via Boxing Scene):
I felt I won nine of the 12 rounds and easily won the fight. He never came close to hurting me and once again my boxing skills were too much for him. But once again the three judges took away my victory. And there is nothing I can do about them.
It seems that Manny has only one opponent every time we fight -- me -- while I have four – Manny and the three judges.
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Is there a bigger insult in boxing than to insist that your foe only beat you because the judges handed him a victory? Maybe only accusing him of being on performance-enhancing drugs (PEDs).
Look, there are obviously varying opinions on who won last November’s showdown. Pacquiao landed more power punches and more total punches, Marquez was more efficient. How that translates in terms of who won and who lost depends on your scoring throughout. You can reasonably and logically justify either guy winning. And therein lays the problem with Marquez’s sentiment. Judges hand out undeserved victories in one-sided affairs like Pacquiao versus Timothy Bradley. Pacquiao-Marquez III was not a one-sided affair that a couple of incompetent judges completely wrecked – it was an even bout that could have gone either way.
Everything goes back to this single point: you can claim that you were robbed once, but you can’t be robbed three times. It just doesn’t work that way. You can’t say that the judges screwed you over three separate times.
All Marquez is doing is motivating Pacquiao. You just know Freddie Roach is feeding the Filipino champ all these “he just won because of the judges” lines that Marquez is spewing and illustrating why a knockout is absolutely necessary.
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Here is to hoping that after Dec. 8 nobody is able to use the judges as an excuse for why they got handed an L.