Manny Pacquiao vs Brandon Rios Preview November 23
Filipino sensation Manny Pacquiao finally returns to the ring this Saturday, November 23 after about a year absence when he takes on hard-hitting Brandon Rios of America over at the Venetian Resort in Macau, China. Rios is a former world lightweight champion and a stiff test for the 34-year-old southpaw Pacquiao, a multiple world title belt holder. The 12-round welterweight bout for the vacant WBO Championship will be broadcast live across North America by the HBO pay-per-view network.
This is really a crossroads fight for Pacquiao since he’s coming off of two consecutive losses, at least officially. He seemed to have won his second-last bout in June of 2012 against Timothy Bradley in the eyes of just about everybody but the judges , dropped a highly controversial split decision. In his last fight against Juan Manuel Marquez last December he was seemingly in control until he walked into a thunderous shot by the Mexican and was knocked out cold in the sixth round.
Pacquiao, who hails from General Santos City in the Philippines., will walk into the ring with a record of 54-5-2 with 38 Kos. He has generally been considered throughout most of his career to be one of the top three pound-for-pound boxers in the world. However, that has changed since losing his last pair of fights. Rios, who fights out of Oxnard, California, has an impressive record of 31-1-1 along with 23 Kos to his name. His only loss came via a unanimous decision to Mike Alvarado in their rematch earlier this year in March. Rios managed to stop Alvarado in the round in their first meeting in October of 2012 by a seventh-round TKO.
The 27-year-old Rios is coming off of his only career loss and this is his first contest as a welterweight, but he’s still a dangerous opponent for Pacquiao because of his style and power. Yes, he may be easy to hit, but he’s also going to hit Pacquiao at the same time. There are a lot of things a boxer can control in the ring during the course of a fight, but knowing exactly how your body’s going to react when you get nailed square on the chin isn’t one of them. Your brain and heart may tell you to stay on your feet, but the legs have a mind of their own.
This has the making of a fight not a boxing match as both men like to dictate the pace and throw punches. The result will basically come down to who has the most power and the better chin as this is unlikely to go the distance. In addition, it’s also going to depend on how much the knockout loss to Marquez actually took out of Pacquiao. There’s no doubt that Pacquiao is motivated to win this encounter, but in the back of his mind he also knows that if he loses he’s still going to go down in history as an all-time great as well as a hall of famer due to an excellent 17-year career in the ring.
Rios may be confident knowing that Pacquiao can be stopped with one punch and no matter what the judges’ scorecards may say, he’s always going to feel he can win the bout the same way Marquez did. In reality though, Pacquiao is a much better boxer due to his superior power, footwork, positioning, experience and defense. Rios is an action-packed and exciting fighter though and history has shown us that anything can happen once the bell rings. He’s not afraid to get hit two or three times to land a shot of his own and he seems to be the owner of a helluva chin as well.
Pacquiao may be more cautious this time out since getting stopped by Marquez and if he’s too laid back he could find himself being outworked and losing rounds on points. He needs to fight in his usual crowd-pleasing style and utilize all of his obvious advantages. Rios has a lot of heart and courage, but if he doesn’t have the power to stop Pacquiao, then expect the Pac-Man to take this bout by a unanimous decision or late stoppage. There could also be some knockdowns along the way even if it manages to defy the odds and goes the distance.
Sportsbook 5dimes.eu has the latest odds of a Pacquiao win at-485 and a Rios victory at +385. Visit 5Dimes.eu to see up to date odds and to bet on this fight. You should also check out our recent boxing betting predictions to see how we’ve done of late capping the fights.