Manny Pacquiao’s recent loss to Juan Manuel Marquez stunned the boxing world. Well, scratch that. It stunned most of the boxing world. Even though nobody came right out and predicted the Filipino superstar getting knocked out six rounds in, apparently some folks saw the whole thing coming. Because he was in decline. Or something.
The longstanding rivalry between Pacquiao and all members of Floyd Mayweather Jr.’s family is a matter of public record. Even Jr.’s father, with whom the undefeated champion has a very tumultuous relationship, has bashed Pacquiao on numerous occasions with all sorts of incendiary comments. Given that, it stands to reason that the Mayweathers would probably have something to say about the most embarrassing defeat on Pacquiao’s resume.
“To be honest, the only reason there has been as many fights as they have had is because Pacquiao really didn't win those fights,” Jeff Mayweather told FightHype recently of the Pacquiao-Marquez wars. “It was basically Pacquiao trying to prove that he was the better fighter. He was trying to prove a statement, because if you already beat this guy 2 times and had a draw with him, you don't need to fight him no more.”
All personal judgments notwithstanding, that is actually a fairly salient point. Had Pacquiao ever knocked Marquez out, that would have been the end of that. The only reason this rivalry went as long as it did is because of the Filipino star’s inability to put his opponent away.
Now, the natural counterargument to that is: then why does everyone want a rematch? Well, because the record still stands at 2-1 in Pacquiao’s favor. Earning a knockout win after two (decision) losses and a draw is not the same thing as knocking your foe out after one decision loss and/or a draw.
During that same interview with FightHype, Mayweather addressed whether anyone still wants to see his nephew square off against Pacquiao.
“The most money on the table for Pacquiao is going to be Marquez now because nobody wanna see him fight Floyd anymore. The Pactards, or whatever they call themselves, PacManiacs, of course they gonna want him to fight Floyd if he got knocked out again and again. That's how stupid they are. At the end of the day, the value of the fight is gone, so stop talking about what Pacquiao can do and Pacquiao this and that.
“Floyd fought Marquez off of almost a two year layoff and played with him like he was in high school. And not to say just because he did that to Marquez, because styles make fights, but at the same time, what people fail to realize is this, Pacquiao got beat by Marquez because Marquez is a counter puncher. And Floyd is probably two or three times better than Marquez at that job. Even Freddie Roach said, 'Oh, he has trouble with counter punchers.' If he has trouble with counter punchers, what the hell is he gonna have with Floyd, the best counter puncher in the world?
“It's asinine. He just has his fans that are diehard fans, just like I still know fans today that don't believe that Mike Tyson ever lost a fight. Even though we saw him on the canvas more than once, but because they are diehard fans, they just don't believe it, and that's what we are seeing with Pacquiao. He has those type of fans that, no matter what happens to him, they are still gonna be his fans and they still think he is gonna have a chance to beat whoever. But I mean, it's over with.”
Mayweather managed to be both right and wrong there. He is right on the technical aspects – Floyd would give Pacquiao serious fits. There is a reason why he, the world’s best counter-puncher, has consistently been favored by Las Vegas in a potential super fight. Where Mayweather is wrong, however, is in his belief that nobody wants to see said super fight. It doesn’t matter if it’s no longer as appealing as it once could have been – folks still want to see Pacquiao and Mayweather square off.
And if Mayweather doesn’t believe that, then he should probably ask himself why he spent the better part of his interview with FightHype talking about Manny Pacquiao.