Manny Pacquiao Shouldn’t Dismiss Brandon Rios’ Aggressiveness

| by Alex Groberman
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Aggressiveness is both a gift and a curse in boxing. On one hand, it provides guys with a move-forward-at-all-costs attitude that can be very beneficial when you’re looking for knockouts. It also impresses the judges, who like to see guys being active and not passive. However, it tends to leave fighters open to being knocked out because they’re moving forward too relentlessly, as well as to situations where counter-punchers pick guys apart while bobbing from one side of the ring to the other.

When Manny Pacquiao’s camp selected Brandon Rios as their guy’s next opponent, they did so because they felt like he was an overly-aggressive, not particularly strategic brawler. He moves forward a lot. He’s impossible to knock out because his chin is made of granite. But if you can withstand the punishment he sends your way, like Mike Alvarado did a couple of months ago, he’s beatable.

The question now is: Did Pacquiao’s camp understatement just how tough Rios’ aggressiveness will be to deal with? Odds makers installed the Filipino star as a 3-to-1 favorite, so their assessment of this match-up is obvious.

Is everyone selling Rios short?

"It's nothing new to me; the critics saying 'Brandon is no good, Brandon's just a one-dimensional fighter, he just comes to fight, no head movement, he gets punched a lot, bla bla bla...' its nothing new to me," Rios told Boxing Scene during a recent interview.

"I'm just going to go out there and shock the world and show the world that when I fight the best and when I have the best in front of me, it brings out the best in me. I'll be ready 100 percent and I'm just going to shut everybody up again.”

It is sort of remarkable how much people are dismissing Rios. This is someone who knocked out Alvarado prior to losing their second fight via decision. He has one blemish on his record. He is impossible to stop early. And he’s squaring off against a guy coming off two consecutive losses – including a brutal knockout.

Is Rios really that massive of an underdog? It’s tough to say right now. Come November, he’ll either prove a lot of people right or a lot of people wrong.