Doug Fischer

Dougie’s Marquez Monday mailbag

FINALLY!

Finally, someone punched WITH Manny Pacquiao and caught him coming straight in with his left hand too far from his chin, feinting with that right jab. THIS TIME, however, Manny also tripped over Juan Manuel Marquez’s foot, simultaneously. He never saw the punch. It was the craziest set of circumstances. A great five rounds! Don’t need a 5th fight, though.

Thanks for the great work, Doug! – JW

Thanks for sharing your comments with me. You don’t need a fifth fight. I don’t need a fifth fight, but a fifth fight is probably what fight fans will get in 2013, and we’ll all watch it with interest thanks to the dramatic action and shocking ending to bout No. 4.

I think Marquez had often punched with Pacquiao during their first three bouts (it was one of the many factors that made him such a difficult opponent for the dynamic southpaw). However, at featherweight and junior lightweight, Pacquiao had the much faster hands and was the harder puncher, so he generally got the better of those simultaneous exchanges. At welterweight, Pacquiao didn’t have such an edge in speed, reflexes and power. However, Marquez could not take as much advantage of it in their third bout as he did in the fourth fight because Pacquiao wasn’t as aggressive as he was on Saturday.

A legion of “Pac-fans” probably wish their hero did not fight as aggressively as he did in bout No. 4, but I’m glad he did because it gave us a tremendous fight and finally resulted in a definitive conclusion in their series.

HISTORY

Really?!?!? That just happened!?!?

(Amazing what 5 lbs of muscle can do…. and a perfectly timed monster counter right.) But Pacquiao went out the only way we would expect the PacMan to go out – on his shield in the midst of a war. He’s a true warrior. Excuse my “Pactardness” but that was history, the kind of history people will be talking about for hundreds of millions of years. LOL. – J from NY

I was with you right up until the history that “people will be talking about for hundreds of millions of years” comments, J. (I guess I suffer from mild “Pactardness.” Hey, I’ll take that over “Mayweather Dementia” any day.)

At his best, the “Pac-monster” thrived by his sword. It’s only fitting that he fell by the sword of his respected, equally courageous nemesis.  

BRING ON ‘BAM BAM’

What’s up Dougie,

First of all, wow!! I did not expect a knockout of the year candidate, much less a one-punch knockout! I did, however, expect a late-round stoppage based on the way both Manny Pacquiao and Juan Manuel Marquez were talking prior to the fight. Then, when they started to fight, and JMM dropped him in the third, I thought he was gonna take him in the late rounds, maybe 9th or 10th.

I’ve followed JMM for a long time and know that he is a wizard in the sport. I wasn’t that shocked when he laid Manny out. He was on a mission, and he completed that mission. I think he schools Brandon Rios the same way he did Juan ‘Baby Bull’ Diaz if that’s his next assignment. What do you think, Dougie? – Miguel, LBC

Even at age 39, I won’t count Marquez out in a fight against an aggressive opponent. And Rios is as aggressive as they come. Hell, JMM could be pushing 50 and still might be able to show the young buck a thing or two in the ring.

However, let’s be realistic and not forget that Marquez stopped the charge of the Baby Bull more than three years ago. He had to pick himself up from a hard knockdown against Michael Katsidis two years ago.

Marquez has proven the ability to systematically break down come-forward fighters, like Diaz and Katsidis, and he was finally able to perfectly time the in-and-out movement of a dynamic boxer-puncher in Pacquiao, but he had to absorb a lot of punishment in those fights.

The question you have to ask when analyzing a potential Marquez-Rios matchup is how much more punishment can JMM take as he gets older?

Rios is a brute, no doubt about that, but he has underrated technique and in-fighting ability. He’s a lot stronger and heavier handed than Diaz. He’s a lot bigger and more skilled than Katsidis. And don’t forget that Marquez beat Diaz and Katsidis at 135 pounds. If he fights Rios it would take place at 140 pounds ormore, where the Mexican master is stronger and harder-punching (as he proved on Saturday) but he’s also more of a stationary target at that weight.

I wouldn’t count Marquez out, but I certainly wouldn’t count out “Bam Bam,” who has the size, ability, toughness and workrate to break down the future hall of famer. I don’t know who wins that fight. I just want to see it.

P4P ONE-PUNCHED?

Hi Doug,

It’s been a while since my last email, but Marquez KO 6 Pacquiao is making me look for your email so I can share with you my thoughts.

- I think we saw the Fight of the Year, Round of the Year, KO of the Year, and possibly Fighter of the Year.

- Even though I was hoping Pacquiao would win, I wouldn’t have been surprised if Marquez knocked out Pacquiao. However, the scenario I envisioned was Marquez hurting him and ending the fight with a barrage of punches forcing the ref to stop the fight.

- I think Pacquiao will fight again. He was winning this fight. He was finally employing a game plan that was consistently keeping Marquez off balance to throw back at him. Essentially, Pacquiao made two mistakes – he fell for feint that left him open for a knockdown and he got too eager for the knockout that left him open for the knockout of the year.

- Not only do I think he will fight again, if I was in his shoes, I would fight again. He was winning the fight against Marquez. That said, I don’t think he should. No fighter is the same when they suffer a ONE PUNCH KO LOSS. A fighter’s ability to take shots nosedives after such an event. History has shown us, if you get one punched, you will not be the same – Paul Williams, Pipino Cuevas, Jaime Garza, and numerous others.

- No fighter who has held the Pound for Pound title has ever been one punched from that throne. Tyson took a 10 round beating before being kayoed by Buster Douglas. Julio Cesar Chavez was schooled by Pernell Whitaker before officially losing to Frankie Randall. Marvin Hagler lost a disputed decision to Sugar Ray Leonard. What we saw tonight was a first. Can you think of a single fighter who was “the face of boxing” that lost their perch the way Pacquiao did?

- One final thing, I was watching in a casino lounge full of my fellow Filipinos. We cheered when they announced Marquez the winner. We are a short bunch, but a classy bunch. Congrats to Marquez for ending the Pacquiao era of boxing.

Thanks. – Dennis L.

Congrats to you and your “short crew” for being classy fans. In the age of social media, we all suffer more exposure to boxing cretins, so it’s good to know that mature fans are still out there.  

Two notes about your question regarding the mythical pound-for-pound title being lost on a one-punch KO: most media and boxing publications did not have Pacquiao rated as the pound-for-pound best going into Saturday’s fight, and, correct me if I’m wrong, but wasn’t Roy Jones Jr. No. 1 P4P when he got iced with one overhand left from Antonio Tarver in May of 2004? He was according to THE RING.

Good point about fighters not being the same after getting KTFO. I think they can bounce back if it happens early in their careers, but I agree that it’s hard to do so when it occurs during their prime or late in their careers. (One of the many things that makes Roberto Duran an ATG is that he managed to have high-profile victories after he was blasted by Thomas Hearns at the same age Pacquiao is now.) Just off the top of my head, there are examples of elite fighters rebounding from multiple devastating knockout losses, including our reigning heavyweight champ Wladimir Klitschko and recent hall of fame inductee Hearns.

I agree that Pacquiao will fight again. That’s what most fighters do, especially the superstars of the sport. Jones has been KTFO four times and he has yet to retire. Evander Holyfield just turned 50 and he refuses to hang ‘em up.

I hope I’m wrong about this but I think Pacquiao will fight on, win some, lose some and get KO’d at least two more times before he retires.

Since no one else wants to admit it, I’ll go on record and say that I was shocked s__tless when Pacquiao was bombed out at the end of the sixth. I thought that Marquez was beginning to break down. Of course, I thought the same thing after about the fourth round of his 2009 Fight of the Year with Juan Diaz. As it turned out, the Mexico City master had the Baby Bull right where he wanted him.

I agree that Pacquiao-Marquez IV is a strong candidate for Fight of the Year, Round of the Year (5), and KO of the Year. And Marquez is certainly a Fighter of the Year candidate.

This past Saturday’s mega-fight will probably get my vote for Fight of the Year and KO of the Year. I’m not sure about Round of the Year. I gotta go back and watch some of those heated rounds between Orlando Salido and JuanMa Lopez during their rematch before I make that decision.

If Nonito Donaire beats Jorge Arce in impressive fashion this Saturday, he’s got my vote as Fighter of the Year.

PLEASE STOP, JUST… STOP

My God Dougie do I not want to see your inbox today.

The facts: Terrific fight between two hall of famers. Pacman was beating him up and he got caught. That’s boxing. He didn’t get “destroyed” or “worked” or any of the nonsense I’m reading. He got over aggressive and got caught by a perfect punch. The one you don’t see that puts you on your ass (or face). All of us that have been in the ring have had that happen

The fiction: Just stop Nutweathers. Look, just b/c Floyd beat up a not-yet-ready for welterweight Marquez and Marquez beat Pacquiao (I believe three times) doesn’t mean he would beat Pac. By that logic, Foreman should have killed Ali. Hearns should have whipped Leonard after decapitating Duran and The Rock “destroyed” Lennox. It’s nonsense and it proves nothing as I’m sure you could give us a list of over 100 such examples. Let us all talk about what we care about: the fight.

What do you think is next for each fighter? Rios for either? JMM vs. Bradley? Who’s left for Pac that would generate interest? Marquez 5? Would love to hear your thoughts. – Tony, LA

Apart from JMM, I think Pacquiao has run out of high-profile opponents. The Mayweather bout doesn’t hold the same meaning it did in 2010 and 2011. I wouldn’t mind watching Rios take on the PacMan (or any offense-minded world-class fighter), but it makes more sense for the young lion to take on the man of the hour (Marquez) than the guy who lost back-to-back fights in 2012.

I’m pretty sure we’ll get Marquez-Pacquiao V after the two vets have a rest and maybe tune-up bouts.

Regarding the “Nutweathers” (that’s a good one, which I’ll have to start using), let them chatter and spit their usual drivel. If they need to view Marquez’s crowning achievement as some sort of victory for their hero that just goes to show you how desperate they are.

It took Marquez 42 rounds to land that right hand that turned Pac’s lights out. He didn’t just walk into the ring on Saturday and beat the s__t out of the Filipino icon. He had to endure a lot of pain and punishment during their thrilling shootout before he clipped Pacquiao as his rival tried to close in for the kill.

To give Mayweather credit for what Marquez did to Pacquiao is just asinine. If Mayweather wanted to prove that he’s superior to Pacquiao he should have fought the little guy two years ago. Period.

LET THE SPECULATION BEGIN

Dougie,

First off, big ups to Juan Manuel Marquez for finally getting the victory he had been craving so badly. It is probably a national day of mourning in the Philippines, and a joyous occasion for all the Pac-haters (although it probably should be noted that unlike with Floyd Mayweather, who is hated because of his antics and self-aggrandizement, Pacquiao is the only fighter I am aware of who, for the most part, is a very likeable guy, but is hated, not for his personality, but because of his rabid fanbase). Like the Lakers, Yankees, and the Duke Blue Devils, everyone wants to see the top dog & media darling come crashing down, and it literally happened.

That JMM won should be no epic surprise. What is a shocker is the manner in which he did it.

And with the pre-fight speculation regarding JMM’s increased musculature & involvement with a known PED supplier, the flame of suspicions will only be fanned even stronger. That Marquez, at 39, got bigger than ever and manage to do what Cotto & Margarito could not, when in his previous incarnations, he was not even noted as a one-punch KO artist, would only raise further speculation. The tragedy of it all is that JMM may be clean, but such a manner of victory, in light of his scrutinized fight preparation & previous reputation as a counterpuncher/ring technician (not a KO artist) will be met with skeptical eyes, fair or unfair. – Tommy 5-Star, San Diego, CA

Yup. Welcome to ‘Boxing 2012,’ Tommy. Honorable men who have never had a history of drug use (recreational or performance enhancers) are suspects and “likeable guys” are despised.

EPIC NIGHT

Sup Dougie, what an epic night of boxing!
I was as shocked as everyone else to see how Pacquiao-Marquez unfolded. I figured each fight had become more of a boxing match as each became adept at avoiding the other’s power shots, and I thought this would continue but with Marquez edging it on the scorecards this time. It was a great adjustment by Pacquiao to use more head movement to evade Marquez’s counters, but an even better one by Marquez to look for the big overhand right when he wasn’t able to consistently land cleanly. I was convinced he didn’t have the power to knock Pacquiao out. How wrong I was! Was odd to see Pacquiao winning the boxing match and Marquez winning the shoot out for sure.

What did you make of how it played out?

I know there’s talk of it already but I hope we don’t see a 5th fight. The reason for the 4th fight (and 2nd and 3rd come to think of it) was to find conclusive result, what more do people want from this? If Marquez had been knocked out he’d have no hope in hell of another fight, I don’t see why it should be any different for Pacquiao. This is as conclusive an ending as we’re gonna get, take it while we can.

I’d like to see Marquez retire now. He’s got the victory over Pacquiao he always wanted, I can’t see him reversing the result against Mayweather as he’s just too short to apply his style against him effectively (or to compete with most of the top welterweights), and I can’t see him having the desire to mix it with the best at 140. He’s had a brilliant career, and really has nothing left to prove.

Do you think this victory would elevate his accomplishments above Pacquiao’s if both were to retire today?

I’m not sure where Pacquiao goes, although Floyd might finally fight him now! But in all seriousness, I can’t see him looking to rebuild against lower ranked opponents. Rematches with Marquez and Bradley are both viable, but with the extent to which he’s slipped since 2010, I’m can’t see him establishing himself at the top of pound for pound lists again. He seems to be in a very similar position to Khan (controversial loss followed by unexpected vicious knockout) but with less time to rebuild and make adjustments, it might be a good time to step away. He’s had a great career but it’s clear his best days are behind him. At least people will stop clamouring for Pac-Mayweather now! I wouldn’t mind seeing it still, as who is there for Mayweather to fight at welter? I’d rather see Mayweather stay at 154 though and face Martinez, Trout, Canelo and Cotto, but it’s sad to say Pac-Mayweather is now more likely than ever.

Where do you see both guys going?

Was good to see Darren Barker back in the ring and putting up a great showing. He was punching with more authority than I’ve seen him do before, and I think he’s a legit threat to any middleweight in the world. I’d back him against any except Martinez (although he pushed him closer than most care to remember) and Chavez (due to the huge weight disparity there’d be). I hope he gets another shot at a world title, and I’d love to see the domestic matchups play out between Barker, Murray, and Macklin. They’ve all proven they’re willing to fight the best, and I just hope the fights can finally be made!

How far do you see Barker going in the division?

Just a few other points:

Gamboa looked shaky, if he doesn’t tighten up his defence and hold his hands up a bit more he’s gonna get KTFO when he moves up in weight. 50 Cent being hoisted into the ring was cringeworthy!

The lightweight division has two really underrated fighters in Vazquez and Burns. I’d love to see either in with Broner, and I’d give both (especially Burns) a good chance of pulling of the upset. Hope one of them gets the chance before he moves to 140.

Keep up the good work Dougie, hope you enjoyed the fights! – Callum, Sheffield, UK

I did, Callum, including the main event of the Fox Sports Net show (Ricardo Williams’ controversial upset of Luis Ramos Jr.) that I called with broadcast partner Mario Solis and our guest commentator, Adrien Broner. While on air I asked Broner if he planned to stay at 135 pounds or go up in weight where big fights await at junior welterweight and welterweight. He said he’s in no rush to leave the lightweight division, which is good news for us hardcore fans because showdowns with fellow beltholders Miguel Vazquez (who easily defended his IBF belt against Mercito Gesta on the Pacquiao-Marquez PPV undercard as I thought he would) and Ricky Burns would likely result in the winner being crowned THE RING’s 135-pound champ. I agree that both underrated titleholders would give Broner a run for his money.

I thought Yuriorkis Gamboa looked pretty good for a guy who has been out of the ring for 15 months, but I also think he’s a brutal knockout waiting to happen, especially if his promoter 50 Cent gets his wish with a Broner showdown. I think the Cuban is tailor-made for “The Problem.”

I think Barker will definitely earn another shot at a major middleweight title and I think on a good night he can beat anyone in the 160-pound division with the exception of Martinez and Gennady Golovkin. (I think he would give Chavez fits.)

I think Pacquiao and Marquez will continue to fight until both are well past their primes and lose a couple fights to modestly talented young guns that they would have dominated had they fought them a few years earlier. This is the way of our sport. Proud, elite fighters never walk away on a perfect victory or a devastating loss. Their character dictates that they always push for one more challenge, one more big win, or one more shot at redemption.

My guess is that both aging badasses fight tune-up bouts early next year and then face each other in fight No. 5 sometime during the second half of 2013.

Does this win elevate Marquez’s legacy above Pacquiao’s? I think it gets him close to his arch-rival in those terms, but ya gotta remember that Pacquiao owns two official victories over the Mexican legend, plus a few boxing records, such as being the first flyweight champ to win the featherweight title (and above) and the first boxer to earn major belts in eight weight classes.

I’m glad that the boxing world can stop talking about the “super-duper-ultra-mega bout” between PacMan and Floyd. That showdown, if it ever happens now, is just another big fight. And if it happens, fine, if not, f__k it. There are other “big fights” that WILL happen.

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