Everyone knows why Manny Pacquiao decided to make Juan Manuel Marquez and not Timothy Bradley his next opponent. Besides the fact that Bradley is a terrible pay-per-view (PPV) draw for someone with his name recognition, he also proved last June that he isn’t even in the Filipino champ's class as a fighter. Sure, he emerged victorious thanks to a horrible ruling by a couple of inept judges, but it wasn’t because of anything he actually did.
On the flip side, Marquez is a proven warrior who challenged Pacquiao every single time they stepped into the ring together. And while he admittedly has yet to record a win against the champ, he’s come a lot closer to doing it legitimately than Bradley has.
So, again – Pacquiao didn’t need to offer any justifications for his choice. Boxing aficionados understood the move and, for the most part, applauded it. Nevertheless, for whatever reason, Manny decided to come out recently and explain why he opted for Pacquiao-Marquez IV instead of Pacquiao-Bradley II.
“People say, ‘Why again, why again Pacquiao?’ and I said, ‘Because I want to prove who’s better. I want the referee to raise my hand. I don’t like the judge’s decision. I don’t like because everybody knows what happened in the last three fights,” Pacquiao said (via the Manila Bulletin).
“There’s so many people asking if I really won the fight and I said yes, I won the fight no doubt. Marquez is claiming he won the fight. I think there’s something wrong.”
He’s right, of course. There were and are a lot of people out there who felt as though Marquez should have won at least one of their three showdowns. But that’s what makes Pacquiao’s decision all the more respectable. Yes, he did ultimately decide to go down the more financially lucrative path – but it’s also the more challenging path. And his refusal to duck what promises to be a tough fight deserves praise.
Pacquiao also opened up about why he didn’t give Bradley the nod for Dec. 8.
"Before the fight, all I heard him say was, 'I'm going to fight toe-to-toe with Manny Pacquiao,'" Pacquiao said (via Yahoo! Sports). “Then, when the fight happened, he ran. The fight wasn't that exciting because he ran and didn't do what he said he'd do.”
Very true, but not the main reason that Bradley didn’t get his desired end-of-year bout. We all know what the main reason was.
"I already beat Bradley," Pacquiao added. "Everyone knows it. I just didn't get my hand raised."