Pacquiao is peaking right now, this may be the best Manny yet – Freddie Roach

1 Nov

Denzil Stone – Atlantic City

The decision to begin training camp two weeks early may be paying dividends for decorated Filipino fighter Manny Pacquiao as Freddie Roach has indicated that not only is the pugilist peaking in camp, but also in his career, as the renowned American trainer believes this is the best he’s ever seen his premier prizefighter. Roach is readying Pacquiao for a November 12 grudge match with Mexican rival Juan Manuel Marquez.

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Pacquiao peaking in camp… and in career? Credit: Stacey Verbeek - Maple Avenue Boxing Gym, Dallas

“We picked sparring up lately, picking the number of rounds up, he boxed 12 rounds yesterday and will box 12 rounds tomorrow… he’s peaking right now,” declared Roach to the Top Rank television cameras. “He’s motivated and 100 percent ready for this fight.”

Pacquiao (53-3-2, 38ko) has sparred with a plethora of fighters who have been brought in to ensure the 32-year-old is punch perfect come fight night in the MGM Grand Garden Arena, Las Vegas, and have all been entrusted to do their best impression of Marquez (53-5-1, 39ko) by mimicking the moves of the three-weight world titlist. Former lightweight title challenger Jorge Linares was drafted in to camp in the Philippines and, at the Wildcard Boxing Club in Hollywood, California, Manny also sparred with Jamie Kavanagh, Ray Beltran and David Rodela.

Despite the technical proficiency of Linares, the familiarity of long-time training partner Beltran, teak tough David Rodela and the hard work of Kavanagh, it was an inexperienced prospect from Orange County who most caught the eye of Roach. So much so, that the 51-year-old took a momentary break from conversation in order to call over strength and conditioning coach Alex Ariza in order to request the name of the impressive fighter.

“Jessie Roman… Jessie Roman gave us some good work,” Roach said. “He’s a young and tough kid, game and Manny had to take some big shots and he hung in there.”

Whilst that was the good, there was also a case of the bad. Such is the nature of working with a fierce powerful combination puncher like Pacquiao that fighters can end up damaged and, with Hastings Bwalya, that was certainly the case.

“We also brought one kid in from Vegas, he had been with [Floyd] Mayweather in his camp for 30 days, he said ‘I’m ready’ [but] Manny broke his nose in the second round. He lasted one day.”

On other partners, Roach stated: “David Rodela always helps us out. Jamie Kavanagh has given us good work [and] he got hit with a really hard body shot. Rey Beltran is always a staple; a durable guy who fights Marquez’s style. Manny is more motivated in sparring than usual. He normally gives me 50 percent, he saves it for the ring but he’s giving me 70 or 80 percent.”

Throughout camp, Roach has consistently proclaimed that his charge will do something to Marquez that no other fighter has done, not even Floyd Mayweather Jr, and that is knock the Mexican ring legend out: “Marquez is a tough guy but I just think we’ll keep him down this time.

“It’s nothing personal I just have confidence in my fighter, that’s why I make body predictions. I hate to say this is the best Manny Pacquiao but y’know, it may be. He’s extra-motivated.”

Pacquiao added: “I’m 97 percent ready. I’m not thinking about the knockout but if it comes then it’s a bonus for our hard work.”

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One Response to “Pacquiao is peaking right now, this may be the best Manny yet – Freddie Roach”


  1. Manny Pacquiao: I’ve changed and improved a lot in the last three years « On The Beak - November 2, 2011

    […] Pacquiao is peaking right now, this may be the best Manny yet – Freddie Roach […]

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