By Ludwig Daza
Freddie Roach believes that this coming fight with Chris Algieri will be similar to the Oscar De La Hoya vs Manny Pacquiao bout. Pacquiao needs only to get closer to maximize his strength, Roach claimed. But I think Pacquiao’s fight with Jorge Solis more likely resemble this upcoming fight than the De La Hoya fight.
Just like Solis, Algieri will enter the ring undefeated and with considerable height advantage, but Pacquiao’s power will be just too much to overcome. We will see Pacquiao impose his will, experience and power in this fight. As with Solis, Algieri will wilt under barrage of punches. And if knockout will not happen, the fight will end in the middle rounds by TKO.
Solis then was using his speed and the ring to neutralize Pacquiao but one can sense that as the fight progresses, Solis strategy will unravel. True enough, Pacquiao was able to cut his ring mobility and Solis got caught.
Less heavy-handed fighters were proven to be easy opponents for Pacquiao. He made mince-meat of Larios, Solis, Velasquez and De la Hoya. Although De la Hoya had enough power to rattle Pacquiao’s cage, he was already a shot fighter then and weakened by weight reduction owing to the catch-weight limit.
Only fighters with power and ring savvy can pose a problem to Pacquiao, and Algieri has neither of these requirements. Algieri survived the onslaught of Provodnikov not because of his ring savvy but because of the latter’s lack of it.
The first five rounds in this fight, Pacquiao will train his sights on Algieri’s body; head-hunting will come later. Pacquiao will revisit his body of work against De la Hoya and I won’t be surprised if Alqieri also quits on his stool.
The dearth of knock-out for the last five years will be a motivation for Pacquiao with this fight against Algieri, and the latter’s skill-set or none of it will provide the eight-time world champion the platform to launch his knock-out power that has been absent for several years.
I fear a mismatch with this fight, and Bob Arum is cashing in on it. He only needs to drum up that glamor boy and educated angle to promote Algieri’s side of the fight and everything will be fine.
If no less than Juan Manuel Marquez, who has known Pacquiao’s power and skill more than anybody, can say that this fight has a possibility of being a mismatch, who could possibly disagree?