Norm Frauenheim

Pacquiao close to choosing Marquez

LAS VEGAS – Talk that Manny Pacquiao and Juan Manuel Marquez were close to an agreement for a fourth fight continued to build Wednesday after the formal news conference for the Sergio MartinezJulio Cesar Chavez Jr. showdown Saturday for the middleweight title.

“I’m certain of it,”’ Pacquiao advisor Michael Koncz said in a hallway at The Wynn, the host hotel for the Martinez-Chavez bout at Thomas & Mack Center.

There was mounting speculation that an announcement of Pacquiao-Marquez could come within a few days, and that the match up would be finalized on Wednesday.

Pacquiao is scheduled to be in Los Angeles Sunday for an appearance on a game show, Manny Many Prizes. Pacquiao promoter Bob Arum has a hold on the MGM Grand for Dec. 8 for the Filipino’s next fight.

 However, Pacquiao trainer Freddie Roach said he was not aware that an agreement was imminent. He said he believed Timothy Bradley was still a possibility, although has learned that Bradley is being targeted for a defense in New York in November if he is not chosen.

Pacquiao’s reported options were down to Marquez and Bradley after Miguel Cotto chose to fight Austin Trout. A Bradley rematch would offer Pacquaio a chance to avenge his controversial loss to Bradley on June 5.

Pacquiao has two victories and a draw against Marquez. But both wins, first a split decision and then a majority decision, were controversial.

“I don’t like that fight,”’ Roach of the Marquez possibility. “It’s a very difficult fight.”’

Roach is concerned that the controversial scoring in Pacquiao’s two decisions might work in Marquez’ favor if there is a fourth.

“I think we’d go in in three to four rounds down already,”’ Roach said.


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