By Freddy Fresco
Manny Pacquiao vs. Jessie Vargas is official for November and it has the chance of being one of those back and forth Fight of the Year type bouts. The old lion versus the young lion. The fight is a great scrap due to the style match up and I give the newly crowned WBO welterweight champion a real good shot at beating the aging legend.
There has been some backlash mainly from Manny Pacquiao haters aka Mayweather fanboys about this fight. They claimed Manny Pacquiao ducked WBO 140 pound champion Terence Crawford, which is laughable. Pacquiao doesn’t duck, his fighting style is not that of a coward runner so squash all that nonsense about him being a ducker. The simple fact is Crawford didn’t pass his audition to land the Pacquiao fight. In Crawford’s first Pay-Per-View bout against Viktor Postol he underwhelmed, he mostly ran around the ring trying to catch Postol coming forward with every little action. It wasn’t the usual Crawford that we all knew and loved the man who went toe to toe with Yuriokas Gamboa and stopped him.
Pacquiao is unlucky when it comes to opponents. The casual fan fell in love with Manny Pacquiao when he had worthy challengers who wanted to take him out instead of trying to survive and hopefully get the judges decision if it goes to the cards. Can you blame them? Pacquiao destroyed the men who tried to bully him, he retired Oscar De La Hoya making him quit on his stool, ruined the much bigger Mexican pressure fighter Antonio Margarito’s eye for life, he battered Miguel Cotto who rushed Pacquiao early to try and impose his will, and Ricky Hatton was put to sleep thinking he could overpower and pressure the former featherweight only to wind up knocked out cold in the second round.
Even Floyd Mayweather fought scared against a one armed much slower and already been knocked out Manny Pacquiao. Floyd never committed to any shots, hugged Manny anytime he got close and kept running away throwing air jabs and trying to get out fast. Sugar Shane Mosley known for his willingness to go toe to toe with opponents got dropped by Pacquiao and ran so hard he had bloody blister boils on his foot, Chris Algieri ran all night and got dropped several times, Brandon Rios a known pressure fighter tried to out box Pacquiao, Timothy Bradley mixed it up from time to time but couldn’t keep up with Manny, and Juan Manuel Marquez was getting busted up badly before he landed the Hail Mary punch that knocked Pacquiao out.
Crawford would have likely stunk up the joint and try to utilize the Marquez tactic like everyone else did, try and catch Manny coming in wild and knock him out. That is easier said than done, Pacquiao doesn’t really lunge in anymore and when fighters do that the paying fan feels like they wasted their money on a boxer who just moved back all night trying to counter Pac in hopes of knocking him out.
In comes Jessie Vargas. Jessie Vargas is a fighter who just knocked out Sadam Ali in spectacular fashion for the WBO welterweight title that Manny Pacquiao once held. Vargas is an action fighter, he is also a fighter who has finally met a trainer that can bring out the best in him with Dewey Cooper. Vargas has grown into his body, he was a tall 5 foot 11 inch lightweight with few knockouts, to a full fledged 147 pound champion with knockout power.
If Vargas backs up his talk about bringing that Mexican style to the ring, the fans will get their money’s worth with Pacquiao vs. Vargas, it could be one of those all out wars to remember. Don’t sleep on it.