This news just came down but what most of us expected has come to fruition as boxing’s pound-for-pound king, Manny Pacquiao, is all but set to step into the ring with Juan Manuel Marquez for a third time this fall. The two all-time greats will battle for Pacquiao’s welterweight championship on Nov. 12 at a catch-weight of 144 pounds.
Top Rank boss Bob Arum reportedly came to an agreement with Marquez (52-5-1, 38 KOs) and now Pacquiao (53-3-2, 38 KOs) must agree to his end of the deal. That shouldn’t be a problem as Pacquiao has taken virtually every deal Arum has put in front of him.
Pacquiao and Marquez have met twice, once in 2004 and again in 2008. Pacquiao dropped Marquez three times in the first round of the 2004 fight, but it ended as a draw thanks to a scoring error on one judge’s scorecard (he mistakenly left one point off of Pacquiao’s total). In 2008, Pacquiao again put Marquez on the canvas and eventually won a controversial split-decision.
Styles make fights and these two certainly are a great matchup, the question is whether or not the 37-year-old Marquez can still handle Pacquiao’s speed. Regardless, it should be a fun fight to watch and is sure to feature lots of action.
Marquez will reportedly take a tune-up fight against former lightweight titlist David Diaz. He is allowed to have an interim fight under the terms of his deal with Arum, as long as it takes place by July 17.
Frankly, Marquez is the only opponent who makes sense for Pacquiao outside of Floyd Mayweather, and there’s no telling if Mayweather will ever have interest in fighting Pacquiao. He hasn’t shown the initiative so far and we wouldn’t be surprised if he stays away forever.