It appears that pound-for-pound best boxer in the world -- and WBO world welterweight boxing champion -- Manny Pacquiao has a new fan in UFC welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre of Quebec, Canada.
St-Pierre, who may be the best mixed martial artist fighter in the world, just visited the Philippines for the first time on a three-day trip to promote his sport.
One of the first things the 29-year-old did was seek out Pacquiao and his trainer Freddie Roach at Quezon City's Elorde Gym to check out a training session first hand. Pacquiao had just made it to the gym when St-Pierre arrived and was busy changing into his training gear. Roach went downstairs to greet St-Pierre and escorted him into the training session.
Roach introduced him to Pacquiao’s conditioning coach, Alex Ariza, along with Michael Medina, and GlennTapia, who are two of the boxer’s sparring partners. St-Pierre then met with Pacquiao in his dressing room and the two world champions had a private talk before Pacquiao stepped into the ring with Roach and worked the mitts.
When it was all over St-Pierre was duly impressed with what he saw from the Pac-Man in the ring.
“He’s the fastest guy I’ve ever seen in my life,” St-Pierre said, “both his hands and his feet. He’s fast. He’s amazing."
Ariza then went through some stretching exercises with the UFC star, who boasts a 20-2 record, and St-Pierre proceeded to work out with Roach.
After the training sessions in the sweltering heat, St-Pierre was asked what he thought the outcome would be if he ever met the 31-year-old Pacquiao (51-3-2, 38kos) in the ring. St-Pierre laughed out loud and said Pacquiao would make him look very old.
St-Pierre has been training with Roach for a few months and credits the famous boxing trainer for making him a better fighter.
‘’Since I started training with him last year in boxing, I’ve been more accurate and been able to hit harder punches’’ he said.
Both fighters are training for their next bouts, which are set to take place before the year’s out. St-Pierre is scheduled to defend his UFC crown on Dec. 11 against Josh Koscheck. The Canadian’s on a pretty good roll at the moment as he’s won seven fights in a row, which includes bouts against BJ Penn and Matt Hughes.
Pacquiao’s attempts at luring Floyd Mayweather Jr. into the ring fell through, and he’s set to take on 32-year-old former world welterweight champ Antonio Margarito (38-6, 27kos) of Mexico in Dallas on Nov. 13 for the vacant WBC super welterweight title. It will be Margarito’s second bout since serving a year-long suspension for doctoring his boxing gloves in a 9th-round TKO loss to Shane Mosley in January 2009.
Thanks to our friends at Badlands Sportsbook for this article.