photo: Tom Hogan, HoganPhotos/Golden Boy Promotions
The 32-year-old Pacquiao (53-3-2, 38 KOs) is looking to change that when he makes an HBO Pay Per View televised defense of his WBO welterweight belt opposite the 38-year-old WBO and WBA lightweight titleholder Marquez (53-5-1, 39 KOs) on Nov. 12 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.
Pacquiao battled Marquez through a draw and a split-decision in May of 2004 and March of 2008, respectively, when they competed first for Marquez’s WBA and IBF featherweight titles and then his WBC junior lightweight belt.
“I would say that this one is much more personal. Manny Pacquiao will never say that he dislikes Juan Manuel Marquez, but the message that I’m getting, looking at Manny and so forth, he wants to make a statement,” said Pacquiao’s trainer, Freddie Roach.
“When Juan Marquez came to the Philippines and campaigned that he felt that he won both fights, and he wore a shirt that read that he beat Manny Pacquiao twice, that was a real slap in the face for Manny Pacquiao.”
Pacquiao’s adviser, Michael Koncz, denied that the fighter has derived any further motivation from the T-shirt.
“Manny doesn’t need any motivation from a f–king petty T-shirt or anything like that,” said Koncz. “Manny just wants to put it out of everybody’s mind that he’s not the best fighter out of the two of them.”
Pacquiao floored Marquez three times during the first round of their initial meeting, and once again in their second bout. Still, some point out that the knockdowns were the difference on some of the scorecards, and without them Marquez might have at least one victory over Pacquiao, possibly two.
In the first fight, judge John Steward had it for Pacquiao, 115-110, while Guy Jutras had it 115-110 for Marquez, and Burt A. Clemens had it 113-113.
In the second bout, Judges Duane Ford and Tom Miller had it for Pacquiao, 115-112 and 114-113, respectively, while Jerry Roth had it for Marquez, 115-112.
“I thought Manny won both fights. One judge made a mistake in the first fight. How could that happen? They were close fights, with one point separated the two,” said Roach.
“Depending on what style you like, that’s who you’re going to think won those fights. I think we won both fights. But that’s life.”
“They were two, very good close fights. Manny will never say anything, but when I mention those things to him, Manny gets this sparkle in his eye and he gets that little grin that he gives me,” said Roach.
“This time, he really means business. So I don’t think that we have to worry about Manny hurting Marquez this time and pulling up and watching him go the distance.”
Why the rematch clause? Read on…