Except for knocking him out, Manny Pacquiao hurt Chris Algieri in every possible way to score an impressive title-retaining win of his Weltereight belt, once again leaving all of us with the question of when, if ever, will he and Floyd Mayweather step in the ring.
The fight took place at the 144 lbs catchweight with Algieri moving up to meet Pacquiao. Despite his height and reach advantage, he was never close to making it even remotely challenging for Pacquiao, enjoying wall-to-wall support from the packed venue, seating over 13,000, in Macau.
The judges scored the fight as an overwhelming unanimous decision, 120-102, 119-103 and 119-103. Pacquiao knocked down Algieri six times, the last of which coming in the 10th round. Pacquiao has been criticized over the last few years from holding back and not recording knockouts anymore, something of a specialty of his back in the day. He hasn’t scored one since 2009, but he didn’t leave anything back in this fight, improving to 57-5-2, marking it as his third consecutive victory since being knocked out by Juan Manuel Marquez.
Pacquiao landed 34% of his punches, hitting 229 out of the 669 he threw. Algieri didn’t come close to bothering Pacquiao, connecting on only 23% of his attempts, 108-of-469. Algieri showed he can get up and take a hit not to mention dozens of them, but it’s quite clear he isn’t the man who deserved this kind of fight, coming away with a very controversial split decision in the win over Ruslan Provodnikov, who probably would have given more of a fight to Pacquiao.
But after collecting the $20 million and adding another entertaining win to the checklist, Pacquiao is once again left with the question of who to fight next. Floyd Mayweather is the obvious, natural option. It has been for quite a long time. And yet the fight isn’t closer to being made. Mayweather loves going on rants through twitter, dissing Pacquiao, often with something of a racial tone. Pacquiao is a bit more vocal than in the past, making fun of the whole absurd situation, making it clear whose at fault here.
At this point it doesn’t matter. It hurts the legacy of Mayweather more because he’s the one perceived as the guy doing the ducking. Pacquiao joked about it with the ringside commentator at the end of the fight. He made fun of it in a commercial leading up to the fight. It’s more funny than sad or disappointing at this point, and more than anything probably shows all that’s flawed in a wonderful sport that is limiting itself from doing as well as it should be.