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Is Pacquiao showing signs of aging?

Antonio Margarito Manny PacquiaoBy Dave Lahr: First it was a bad foot and now it’s a virus that has Manny Pacquiao out of action. While it might not a big deal to some, the fact both of the maladies have come in such a short period of time makes me wonder whether Pacquiao is getting old on us. At 31, a sometimes a fighter starts to show signs of breaking down physically. It can be nothing for some and an old age home for other fighters practically. You just get old sometimes. Is that what’s happening with Pacquiao? Has carrying all that weight trying to beat the big boys caused Pacquiao age all of sudden or is this just something happens to a fighter when he turns 31 and becomes a politician?

This probably wouldn’t make any difference at all if Pacquiao were fighting Ricky Hatton, a weight drained Oscar De La Hoya or a just happy to be there Joshua Clottey. But Pacquiao is facing Antonio Margarito, a Mexican punching machine with a five inch height and reach advantage over Pacquiao. You can bulk up to higher weight classes the way Pacquiao is doing, but that doesn’t make you as strong as the fighter that you’re up against. Margarito is naturally bigger and stronger than Pacquiao. It doesn’t take much effort for Margarito to hurt Pacquiao with his heavy shots. Pacquiao has to reach back for everything he has to equal Margarito’s power, because he’s so little.

And now that Pacquiao is getting either sick or his his body is giving him problems with injuries, I think it’s a sign that Pacquiao is old and maybe needs to back off in his training. When you get old you got to slow down a couple of notches. You can’t keep fighting like you’re young. Unfortunately, I think Margarito isn’t showing any signs of aging and is going to beat the tar out of Pacquiao. It’s going to be one of those savage beatings where the fight needed to be stopped many rounds before it eventually does get stopped.

Freddie Roach will keep giving Pacquiao advice in between rounds to try and come up with some of scheme to get back in the fight, but Margarito will just stay on Pacquiao and beat him down with his unrelenting punches to the head and body. I see Pacquiao whimpering from the pain of the body shots and looking at the clock to see how much time is left in the round, wishing it would be over. But the rounds will seem endless, as Margarito drives one fist into Pacquiao’s body and face after another.

Pacquiao’s features will become distorted, with blood everywhere, his nose completely flattened across his face and his lips both busted and bleeding red blood. Roach, despite all of his years of training and knowledge, won’t have a clue what to do. When someone is getting beaten like that, it’s beyond advice and training. It just comes down to one fighter being bigger and stronger or faster than the other guy.

So Roach will continue to bark at Pacquiao in between rounds, but it won’t make any difference. Pacquiao will continue to take his beating every round until the referee finally will step in and halt the massacre rather than risking the potential of Pacquiao bleeding completely in front of the Cowboy Stadium crowd and the millions watching at home in the Philippines and the United States.

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