A close match up that even knock-outs are seemingly ruled out, despite the promises of both that they would lay down the smack and treat fans for a knock-out. I predict this match would be as close as their previous encounters, and I have stressed since the early days of their rivalry, that Juan Manuel Márquez is the "Pacquiao Nemesis." Until now, I find it hard to predict matches of this caliber simply because of the immense diversities that any outcome would become a realistic possibility. Personally, I have never seen such a close fight between two fighters since their previous fights and still counting.
What about a Fifth Fight? Any Predictions?
Well, what about it? I mean, its clear that this match-up will never go decisively into each others favor. As usual, I would have to give this fight a toss up. Anyone can win this match-up. Only this time, I am slightly favoring Márquez. Yes, I have once scored their last fight to Manny, but I believe Márquez will now learn how to finally dispose of Manny. I predict Juan Manuel Márquez to win by decision against Manny Pacquiao.
I also predict that its going to be heart wrecking day for Filipino fans like myself, knowing our countrymen Micheal Farenas will also be facing Olympic Gold Medalist, and my favorite, Yuriorkis Gamboa. I've covered Gamboa before, and being the future prospect in the sport of boxing that he is, he does not disappoint. I predict Yuriorkis Gamboa to get a Technical Knockout against Micheal Farenas in the early rounds.
I remembered the last time there was emotional grief on a national scale, that time Érik Morales defeated Manny Pacquiao in their first fight. I believe, we will be experiencing the same thing again after the Márquez Camp triumphs over his victory against Pacquiao. There are lots of ways to change the outcome of my predictions naming a few attributes that fighters need to improve once they step into the squared circle.
What it takes to win?
In order for Manny to win this match against the tough counter-punching mexican Juan Manuel Márquez, he needs to be aggressive. Sure, when we think about Pacquiao, aggression is his patent, but it recently seems too far away, now that Pacquiao is aging away. Stamina will be limited for Manny, as well as diminished reflexes. What Pacquiao needs to do is to be aggressively smart, and not just bombing away regardless.
Márquez will counter in every mistake that Pacquiao will be making, so he needs to be careful. Márquez has a weakness to poorly react on unpredictability. Pacquiao needs to be unpredictable but cautious. Pacquiao should not get overconfident in knocking down Márquez, since his toughness is a proven fact. Márquez will keep getting up no matter how hurt he is, and mark my word, if he falls down, he will recover as quickly as he's dropped. Márquez needs to be tremedously focused in avoiding that straight left of Manny and not be placed in a position for him to make risks.
In order for Micheal Farenas to win, he needs to adapt a counter-punching style against the volume puncher in Yuriorkis Gamboa. Boxing teaches us that anybody's got a chance, and despite being a tremendous underdog, Micheal Farenas will always have a chance, considering his strategy is correct. Gamboa is quick handed, powerful, and athletically swift. The only thing that Farenas could have against Gamboa is his toughness and some punching power. All Gamboa needs to do to win is to keep doing the same thing he usually does, and that is, to dominate!
The correct strategy for Farenas against Gamboa is to counter-punch, there is no other way around it. If Farenas decides to slug it out, he would definitely get caught or rag dolled by Gamboa's speed. Farenas must keep a sturdy defense at all times and not be cocky in dropping his hands. It's time to adapt that Joshua Clottey defense! Anyone has a chance to win. As much as I want Manny Pacquiao to win, only this time, I will be slightly favoring Juan Manuel Márquez in their now fourth and epic rivalry.
Pacquiao - Mayweather Jr. is a must, regardless of any outcome of this match. If Márquez beats the Pacman, a fifth fight will be imminent, and Márquez will finally stake his claim to once and for all officially beat Manny, the same way he has been telling everyone after all this time. If Pacquiao will win this, there will probably be no fifth fight despite of how close this match-up will become. As usual, I have no doubt, Yuriorkis Gamboa will dispose of Farenas too, and I mean that, easily. Gamboa IS the future of the professional boxing. I can't wait until Nonito Donaire Jr. gets to trade leather with him.
Picture: A poster of Manny Pacquiao versus Juan Manuel Márquez in their fourth fight. To be held on Saturday, December 8, 2012 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena.