Manny Pacquiao decided not to fight a rematch with Jeff Horn in Australia to avenge his loss, so he could focus more on his political career in the Philippines and his promoter Bob Arum of Top Rank suggested that he will pit the winner of Terence Crawford vs. Jeff Horn against Pacquiao at the end of 2018.
Arum also wants to put Manny in a stay busy fight, a tune up, against a credible opponent to keep him active before facing the winner of Crawford-Horn.
Rumors floating around the internet have former 140 pound champion Mike Alvarado as the targeted opponent for Pacquiao.
Since losing to Brandon Rios in 2015, Alvarado has been on an impressive 4 fight win streak, he has been able to rededicate his focus to boxing and could be a dangerous foe for the aging Pacquiao.
Pacquiao vs. Alvarado is an even fight. We don’t really know what Pacquiao has left and the much younger Alvarado presents several problems for the smaller 8 division champion.
Alvarado has never reached the pinnacle of fame and fortune that Pacquiao has, this is added motivation for him plus the chance to fight and beat a legend no matter how past his prime is another incentive for him.
Pacquiao doesn’t seem as into boxing as he once was, before the Horn fight his team were already looking to the future, he entered the fight looking like an older fighter with no game plan at all. He can’t overlook Alvarado the way he did Horn, or he could face the same outcome or worse get knocked out.
Alvarado has the size, the youth, but he has also taken his fair share of damage, and that takes its toll on any fighter, Pacquiao as well, he has been in grueling wars and has been fighting for much longer.
If this fight took place 7 years ago I would favor Pacquiao, but at this stage of his career the fight is a toss up, if he loses to someone like Alvarado he should really think about hanging them up.
If he wins the fight, the next fight is even more dangerous, Crawford has the youth, size and skill to beat him handily, and Horn roughed him up the first time using his size and strength, the second time around could be even worse.
Erwin Lastimosa is a long time boxing fan and enjoys discussion boxing with his peers.