Finally, the long wait is over and the cat is out of the bag. And it’s quite a big cat, mind you.
But if there’s anybody who has preternatural knowledge about the many ways there are to skin a cat, I guess it would have to be the great Manny Pacquiao.
SPENCE. After much posturing and pageantry over the past few months, it was revealed yesterday that Pacquiao’s opponent will be none other than the reigning WBC and IBF welterweight champion Errol Spence (27-0, 21 KOs).
It will be on Aug. 21, 2021 in Las Vegas, and this early the boxing world is already in an uproar as it anticipates this matchup to be the biggest fight in 2021.
Many anticipated that it would be Terence Crawford who would get the call, but Spence is equally as dangerous and might even be a more formidable opponent owing to his size.
Spence is coming off a unanimous decision verdict over the tough Danny Garcia in December of last year and seemed like he hasn’t lost much after figuring in a horrific car accident which miraculously spared him from any serious injuries.
In that fight, Spence demonstrated his versatility as he out-boxed Garcia and more than held his own during the exchanges.
Though known more for having a lot of pop in his punches, Spence probably opted to play it a bit safe in that fight as that was his first after a long layoff following the accident.
MANNY. The Pacman hasn’t fought since he defeated Keith Thurman back in 2019 and by the time the bell rings for this fight, it will have been more than two years since Pacquiao has faced an opponent in a boxing ring.
In that fight, Pacquiao took care of business against the younger, feral Thurman, but it wasn’t exactly the dominating performance of the good old days. The bull-strong Thurman bullied Pacquiao (62-7, 39 KOs) at times and were it not for the knockdown that Pacquiao scored in the opening round, the verdict could potentially have been adverse to him.
That it was a split decision victory in his favor was quite emblematic of the give and take nature of the proceedings. Personally I had Pacquiao a clear victor, but apparently, the judges did not.
STYLE. Again, the styles-makes-fights aphorism will hold sway here. We know what Pacquiao brings to the table, but the problem is we don’t know how much he has left at age 41.
As for Spence, he can be difficult to figure out as he has a boxer-puncher hybrid mentality.
Against Pacquiao, he might opt to box more and attempt to tire out his older opponent and hopefully catch him in the later rounds.
This early, I am sitting on the fence on this one, but I am leaning towards Spence in a close fight as we don’t know if Manny can still bring it.
Can’t wait to follow his progress during training and see if he still has what it takes.
LAST ROUND. It’s on my beautiful and winsome niece, Yanna Isabelli Chanco Quijano, who recently celebrated her birthday. Cheers!