People who are suggesting a 5th fight between Filipino boxing icon Manny “PacMan” Pacquiao and Mexican legend Juan Manuel Marquez are either foolishly consumed with pride or are simply afraid that with PacMan out of the ring, their opportunity to make money will vanish.
There are no “lucky punches” in boxing. Every punch thrown is aimed at hitting the opponent.
The only antidote to that is to avoid the incoming “lucky punch.” If he is able to evade the punch, it is the boxer who is “lucky.”
If the boxer is hit, the punch is not “lucky.” It simply means that he is slow in reacting to an attack.
Manny’s knockout loss was simply a result of too many fights in too many nights.
The first knockdown suffered by Manny came from a punch that a younger Pacquiao could have easily avoided.
But Manny just stood in front of Marquez with his left hand slightly lowered, thus, opening his left temple to the right, which sent him to the canvas.
Pacquiao is no stranger to the canvas. He was knocked out cold by Rustico Torrecampo when he was younger.
In another fight a few years later, he should have lost by knock out to Australian fighter Nedal Hussein had he not been aided by referee Carlos Padilla following a fall in the fourth round of their fight in October 2000.
Padilla delivered the mandatory 8-count in slo-mo allowing the crawling Pacquiao to recover. He came back from that fall to knock out Hussein in the 10th round.
In another fight against a Russian challenger, Serikzhan Yeshmaganbetov in 2003, Pacquiao also kissed the mat in the fourth round before he finished off his opponent in the fifth.
There were other instances later on when Manny was hurt but the fighting spirit and the youth in him helped him withstand those hurting punches.
When Manny was floored by the right of Marquez in the third round of their fourth meeting on Saturday (Sunday morning in Manila), I already had a discomforting feeling.
I had a premonition that something bad would happen as Manny went back to his gung-ho style in attacking his opponent leaving himself open to counterpunches.
That was what exactly happened in the dying seconds of the 6th. Instead of relenting in his attack since the 10-second bell had rang, a show-boating Pacquiao came in with his guards down and was knocked out cold by a perfect right that hit the button.
Marquez is one of the best counterpunchers and the most resilient fighter I have seen in the business.
Remember the three knockdown he suffered in the hands of Pacquiao in their first meeting?
Well, he came back from those knockdowns to bring the fight to an exciting end, which was scored a split draw.
If it was the other way around, there was no way Manny could have stood up after those three devastating knockdowns.
Personally, I had misgivings about the fourth fight actually.
Early on, I thought that it was a pointless fight. There was nothing in it for Manny to gain.
Besides, I really felt that Marquez is a very difficult opponent for Manny because of his counterpunching style.
Manny’s people and even Bob Arum, if he really cared for Manny, should have realized that and refused a fourth fight.
A rematch with Timothy Bradley was the more logical fight for Manny.
If at all, the fourth encounter was a fight designed to give Marquez a chance to redeem himself, not for Manny to prove that he is the better fighter.
Marquez did just that.
A fifth fight would not only be foolish. It will be a virtual push to the yawning crevice of ignominy for Manny.
It could even be a virtual suicide.
Only people who do not care for Manny and who only crave for his money will suggest a fifth fight with Marquez.
Those who truly love him, like his mother, Dionisia, are right in suggesting that it is time for Manny Pacquiao to hang up his gloves, while he could still pronounce his name correctly.
The eight world titles that he won, the honor he has earned for his country and the pride he has given the Filipino people are great achievements that will be remembered forever.
Not even a knockout loss in his last fight could tarnish that.