Two consecutive defeats and almost a year away from the ring, have inevitably led to question marks over whether or not former pound-for-pound champion Manny Pacquiao still has what it takes to win another big boxing bout.
However, since having his lights turned out in crushing fashion by his boxing nemesis Juan Manuel Marquez’s spectacular right hand 11 months ago, Pacquiao has only been thinking about this comeback moment.
And although no one should be writing off such a tough cookie as Brandon ‘Bam Bam’ Rios, Pacquiao’s opponent has been well selected by his people to ensure this comeback fight for the vacant WBO
welterweight crown suits the Philippine boxing icon.
This is why Manny’s price of 1/5 should be taken to win the bout, while the 4/1 on offer for the judges to go with Pac-Man by unanimous decision, will be the most likely method of victory.
Rios’ record proves the Kansas-based brawler is no mug, with 31 wins (23 KO’s) and a solitary defeat, showing he certainly has one-punch knockout power in his armoury.
This suggests his best shot at providing a massive PPV upset will be by KO or TKO, rated at 11/2 by Ladbrokes.
Nevertheless, that loss was significant because it came the last time he fought, in the second of his two-match series against fellow American Mike Alvarado, the man many thought had earned the right to be stepping into the ring with Pacquiao in China instead of Rios.
But the fact Pacquiao’s people selected Rios over Alvarado says a lot about how they hope this fight will go.
Alvarado is the definite pugilist of the pair, while Rios fights off the front foot from the first bell and he’s much more prepared to take punches in order to land them, something which will suit someone with the boxing skills possessed by Pacquiao.
As long as he avoids getting tagged with another jaw-jangler, one of boxing’s finest ever southpaws should be able to wear Bam Bam down and get back to winning ways.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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