A few last thoughts on Manny Pacquiao vs. Juan Manuel Marquez. The two men meet for a fourth time tonight live on HBO pay-per-view.
Covering a single boxing event in-depth for a week straight is always interesting. You can analyze a fight a million different ways and struggle to picture what exactly you're going to get when the two men step into the ring. But with the fourth fight between Manny Pacquiao and Juan Manuel Marquez, you know exactly what you're going to get.
I talked about it in my official preview and prediction for the bout, but I don't really see any way this fight looks any different from the first three.
So with that in mind, here are some final thoughts as we close in on the start of the show:
- Top Rank has to get back to being more serious about their undercard for pay-per-view events. Gamboa is a big talent and has the potential to be a star, but he's being given a gimmie. Your co-main event should not feature a -3750 favorite. Top Rank put great thought into the Cotto vs. Margarito undercard and put together a card full of exciting, well matched fights. This though? This is a waste. Mercito Gesta vs. Miguel Vazquez should be competitive at least.
- I'm finding it more and more difficult when picturing to the fight to think that judges will suddenly place the extra value on his counterpunching needed for Marquez to win. Pacquiao attacks, judges like that. Marquez's path to victory is going to require doing something a little more flashy and maybe winning half a dozen firefights over the course of twelve rounds.
- Pacquiao should be looking for a knockout tonight. Another controversial, narrow victory will haunt his legacy forever. A loss that wasn't really a loss to Bradley doesn't hurt his legacy. A loss to Morales was avenged with two resounding victories. And nobody remembers early career losses to Singsurat and Torrecampo. But four fights without a definitive victory over Marquez will sting forever.
- I have to admit to being curious what the "knock your socks off" ring walk for Gamboa will be. I'm fully ready to laugh if it's just 50 Cent rapping Gamboa to the ring while a couple girls dance around. But it has to be something more than that...right?
You can follow all of our Pacquiao vs. Marquez 4 fight week coverage right here, or you can follow the tremendous SB Nation boxing blog Bad Left Hook for their in depth coverage.