On the night of November 13, 2010 in Texas, Manny Pacquiao once again delivered a great show after winning, by anonymous decision, his 8th division title from Antonio Margarito.
That fight was a make or break fight for both fighters. Both fought representing their respective countries. Both seriously didn’t want to lose. Both seriously wanted to win. It could be a deciding factor for Manny to retire. It could be the deciding factor to end Antonio’s boxing career.
Margarito was literally battered, bruised, cut and wounded in that fight! His right eye swelled since the 3rd round which continued to worsen in to a nasty cut that bled throughout the rest of the 12 rounds bout as his left eye seemed to catch up with a swell of its own. All rounds finished in favor of Manny, who was hoping the referee would call it quits for Antonio on the 11th round. Manny decided not to pursue a TKO on the 12th round allowing Antonio to finish the fight still standing… face covered in his own blood but never knocked down.
Margarito’s height and weight was no match to Pacquiao’s speed. Since the 1st round, Manny was able to land more power punches than Antonio could jab. Manny was moving around and about the ring more often in this fight. He even did an Ali shuffle somewhere in the 7th round! That was probably a fight for Margarito to remember, where he was hit by more power punches than he could have ever thrown in his entire career.
Manny’s new game play, however, included risking himself as bait by moving back to the ropes, as if he was deliberately inviting a beating from Margarito. Manny’s speed, however, proved canny allowing him to find a lot of openings for his 3+ punch combination moves. The strategy was dangerous and painful for Manny who always avoided the ropes from touching his back in most, if not all, of his previous fights. He played the strategy through, but that didn’t mean he didn’t get some hurting from Margarito along the way.
Surprisingly, no one got knocked down in that fight. Margarito’s fighting spirit kept him upright even after catching an amazing 5+ left and right punching combo to the face and head from Manny. Even Manny kept himself standing after an upper cut from Margarito hit him hard in the face.
Overall, the boxing match was another great success for Bob Arum. Congratulations to Antonio Margarito for a respectable display of fighting spirit. Manny’s win was greater because of Antonio’s will to finish the fight. Congratulations to Manny for a courteous display of responsibility and sportsmanship towards the end of the fight. More than anything else, Manny’s obvious concern for the welfare of his opponents make him greater, perhaps even the greatest boxer, that the sports of boxing have ever known. Kudos Manny “Pacman” Pacquiao… you’re the man!