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 Martinez-Julio 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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