By Chris Cella
Former multi-divisional world champion Manny “Pac Man” Pacquiao (54-4-2, 38 KO) has begun training camp in preparation for his fourth battle against Mexican boxing legend and former world champion Juan Manuel “Dinamita” Marquez (54-6, 39 KO)
Coming off one of the most controversial results in boxing history–in which he lost his WBO welterweight title to Timothy Bradley via split decision–it was reported that Pac Man looked focused in his first day at camp, and that trainer Freddie Roach was pleased with the performance of his fighter.
On December 8 at the MGM Grand Arena in Las Vegas, the fighters will embark in what will be the fourth installment of their epic series, with Pacquiao having emerged victoriously, if not controversy free, in the first three outings.
The Pac Man has nothing left to prove in the world of boxing. He is the first eight-division world champion, having won ten world titles, and is the first boxer to win the lineal championship in four different weight classes. Regardless of what happens against Marquez, or in succeeding fights, Pacquiao will go down as one of the best southpaws and pound-for-pound best fighters to ever lace the gloves up.
Many can, have and continue to argue that Marquez was robbed in at least two if not all of the bouts, two of which ended in a split decision.
But when these two former world champions and future Hall of Famers touch gloves to commence their war on December 8, the boxing world won’t be talking about the controversy surrounding their trilogy or the terrible judging that resulted in Timothy Bradley being crowned WBO welterweight champion.
They will be honed in on watching two of the sport’s best doing what they do best. This time when the bell rings, Pac Man and Marquez won’t be competing for a world title. At this point in their careers, neither fighter has anything to lose; it will be about showing the world who the better fighter is, and who wants it more.
For Marquez, it will be about proving that he did in fact get robbed, and that he outfought Pacquiao in the previous fights; for Pac Man, it will be about reestablishing himself as the top welterweight.
These two warriors will undoubtedly put on a show for boxing fans around the world, and their fight can already be added as a potential candidate for ‘Fight of the Year”: even though it is still over five weeks away.
Come December 8, fans are going to see a Manny Pacquiao who leaves it all in the ring and holds nothing back, and this may result in the most dangerous Pacquiao that Juan Manuel Marquez has faced yet.