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Arum: Rios could fight Pacquiao in 2013

By Chris Williams: With one of his fighters Kermit Cintron going down to defeat at the hands of Carlos Molina last night in Carson, California, Top Rank promoter Bob Arum likely lost a potential future opponent for his fighter Manny Pacquiao to face. Arum had recently signed up Cintron and had reportedly said that he could face Pacquiao before he retires.


That’s not likely to happen now with Cintron getting totally dominated by fringe contender Molina. However, Arum now appears to be moving on to WBA World lightweight champion Brandon Rios (28-0-1, 21 KO’s) as a potential opponent for Pacquiao after Rios destroyed fringe contender Urbano Antillon (28-3, 20 KO’s) by a 3rd round TKO on Saturday night in Carson.

Although Antillon came into the fighting having already lost two out of his last four fights, Arum still was excited about Rios adding another loss to Antllon’s resume and said “Ultimately the goal is sometime in 2013, when he’s ready, to put him in with Manny, because he is the one guy I think. He’s got to put on a little more weight, a little more experience at a higher weight, but he’s the one guy that can match Manny for speed and ferocity.”

I think it’s an awful idea. Rios was getting hit with everything by a smaller fighter last night and looked horrible on defense. Rios was a lot bigger than Antillon and the fight was like watching a welterweight fight a lightweight. Rios isn’t blazing fast and he’s nowhere near as good as Pacquiao. Rios would be in trouble against Juan Manuel Marquez, and yet here Arum is talking about matching Rios up against Pacquiao.

I know it’s disappointing that Arum’s fighter was dominated by Molina and thus removed from the Pacquiao sweepstakes (maybe), but Rios is too small, too slow and too easy to hit to have a chance against Pacquiao. He’s like a more limited version of Ricky Hatton. A great fight it is not. If Arum wants to put together a nice mismatch, then, yes, Rios vs. Pacquiao would match a lot of the in house mismatches that Pacquiao has been involved with of late. He fits in nicely with the mismatches between Pacquiao and Miguel Cotto, Antonio Margarito, Joshua Clottey, Oscar De La Hoya and Hatton. I see him as a 1st or 2nd round knockout victim for Pacquiao.

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