BOXING: Manny Pacquiao eyeing up an 'explosive' return in Macau
Manny Pacquiao's trainer Freddie Roach is predicting an explosive start to the Filipino fury's road to redemption.
For the first time since 2006 Pacquiao will fight outside the United States with the eight-division champion revealing he will take on Brandon Rios in Macau on November 24.
Dubai was also said to be in the running as Pacquiao looked to escape the high American tax rate, but promoter Bob Arum opted for Macau in an attempt to cash in on the lucrative Chinese market.
Pacman’s (54-5-2) career is on the ropes after dropping his last two fights, including a brutal knockout to Juan Manuel Marquez, and he comes up against a renowned brawler in Rios who’s suffered just one defeat in 33 bouts with one draw. But Roach reckons he doesn’t stand a chance against the power of Pacquiao.
“Manny is definitely going to get his mojo back with this fight,” the revered trainer said. “Brandon Rios likes to fight in the pocket and exchange, and Manny is very good in the pocket, too. I think it’ll be an exciting fight but that Manny is going to land in the pocket at some point and knock this guy out somewhere along the way. Rios likes to exchange and his style is not really difficult to figure out, so Manny’s gonna hit him.”
Rios, a former lightweight champ, was actually Pacquiao’s third choice after Marquez and Timothy Bradley, who claimed a controversial decision over the Filipino last June, both declined a rematch. The pair will instead square off for the WBO welterweight crown in September.
But while the 27-year-old American lacks the star appeal of a Marquez, Arum is confident he’ll put on a show. And Arum even took a sly dig at long-time nemesis Floyd Mayweather following ‘Money’s’ victory over Robert Guerrero on Sunday.
“I think it’s a good match. People who watch boxing have differing views of the sport,” Arum said. “Some like to see an artistic performance like Mayweather gave and other people like to see two guys knocking the s*** out of each other.
“Me, I love a match when the guys go after each other and throw bombs. It doesn’t mean it’s the right preference, but this is one of those kinds of fights.”