The third fight between Manny Pacquiao and Timothy Bradley, ending in another win for the Filipino and another title belt. But it’s probably the last time he steps in a boxing ring, unless Floyd Mayweather Jr. offers him a rematch, which he doesn’t seem to have any intention of doing.
Mayweather and Pacquiao finally got in the ring in May 2015, probably five or six years too late. Mayweather dominated the fight, winning by unanimous decision in a fight many declared as one of the most disappointing in recent years, without a lot of clean hits or good boxing. Defensive boxing isn’t necessarily bad boxing, but there were rarely any fireworks. Pacquiao claimed he fought with an injured right shoulder. Some think it was just something his team made up as an excuse after the fight.
While Pacquiao has been getting himself into trouble with some of the things he’s been saying in the 10 months that went by, Mayweather ended his contract with Showtime by fighting Andre Berto. Turns out the anticipation for Pacquiao held a lot of sway in Mayweather’s PPV success. His fight against Berto is estimated to have brought in a max 550,000 PPV buys, with many figuring out the real number to be around 400k, which is the lowest for Mayweather since 2006.
In so called retirement, although you never know with Mayweather, who always seems to be in shape and just might be the best boxer in the world if he decides to step into the ring right now. He’s been busy discrediting everything and everyone around him, basking in his undefeated record and his win over Pacquiao, although it seems he’s putting a lot more into it than anyone else has.
Basking in the glory or not, Mayweather did all he could to discredit Pacquiao’s appeal this week. He tends to get his mouth busy and working the moment Pacquiao has a fight, unable to not have the attention all on him. If his plan has succeed or not we’ll know when some of the numbers come out, but turns out his legacy didn’t get that much of a boost by beating Pacquiao, while that loss isn’t going to take away from what Pacquiao has done in his 20-plus years of boxing.
Pacquiao did look a bit rusty in the early rounds against Bradley, a fighter that controversially beat him in June 2012 thanks to some weird ringside judges scoring. Bradley was beaten by Pacquiao in the rematch two years later, and was crushed by Pacquiao on their third encounter, getting knocked down in the 7th and 9th round despite a pretty good start.
While Pacquiao looked a bit sluggish in the early goings, he got into his rhythm and landed clean shots that Bradley kept walking into. As good as Bradley is against a certain portion of the boxing world, Pacquiao, inferior to Mayweather or not, still seems to be in a class of his own, unless there’s Juan Manuel Marquez stepping on his toes to help his counter punching.
Do we see another Pacquiao – Mayweather fight in the distance? Probably not. If there was ever a time to set one up it’s now, with Pacquiao renewing the interest in him by performing well against Bradley (weird that Bradley and Mayweather have never fought). A lot of fights Mayweather could have had never happened until they were a bit too late.
In any case, Pacquiao seems intent on retiring and moving on full-time into politics or something else. I’m pretty sure an offer from Mayweather to try and earn back some respect will get Pacquiao out of this retirement, which is always something questionable in boxing. But for now, Mayweather has no intent of stepping in ring again. Neither does Manny.