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Pacquiao ready for Vargas says Koncz


By Allan Fox: Adviser Michael Koncz says former eight division world champion Manny Pacquiao (58-6-2, 38 KOs) is ready for his title shot against WBO World welterweight champion Jessie Vargas (27-1, 10 KOs) on November 5 at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas, Nevada. Pacquiao is moving to the second of his training camp by training in the U.S at the Wildcard Gym with trainer Freddie Roach on Monday in Los Angles, California.

“He was fast, furious and he was fabulous,” said Koncz to about Pacquiao’s training for the 27-year-old Vargas.

Pacquiao has been using 2012 U.S Olympian Jose Ramirez as a sparring partner to get him ready for Vargas fight, as he has a similar style to him. Ramirez is a busier fighter than Vargas with a better left hook. The two fighters are both 5’10”, so that should get Pacquiao prepared for what he’ll be facing size-wise when he gets inside the ring with Vargas on November 5.

The Pacquiao vs. Vargas fight will be shown on Top Rank pay-per-view rather than on HBO PPV, as they turned down the fight. HBO would have televised the fight, but they didn’t want to put it on for November, because they’re already putting on a fight between IBF/WBA/WBO light heavyweight champion Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev and Andre Ward for the 19th of November on HBO PPV. HBO didn’t want to have two PPV events in the same month.

Top Rank promoter Bob Arum felt that he had to stage the Pacauiao vs. Vargas fight in November due to Pacquiao’s work schedule in the senate in the Philippines, so he opted to put the fight on himself. Arum has hired his own broadcasting team for the fight, and he’s pretty excited about it.

Pacquiao is the favorite to beat Vargas. Pacquiao looked sharp in his last fight in defeating Tim Bradley by a 12 round unanimous decision last April in Las Vegas, Nevada. It was the third fight between the two of them, and by far the easiest of the three for Pacquiao.
The interest in the Pacquiao-Vargas fight has been lukewarm at best.

Top Rank might have made a mistake by having Pacquiao fight Vargas rather than a popular welterweight outside of the promotional company. They did a good job of matching Pacquiao against Floyd Mayweather Jr. last year after three years of less than impressive match-ups, but the boxing public doesn’t appear to be interested in seeing Pacquiao fight Vargas. It’s possible that the fans might suddenly purchase the Pacquiao vs. Vargas figh in high numbers on November 5, but it’s not likely. In the past, you could always tell when fans were interested in one of Pacquiao’s fights, because they would talk about it in the lead up to the fight. However, in the case of the Pacquiao-Vargas fight, there is no buzz at all whatsoever. The fans are not talking about the fight, and that suggests that Top Rank has another turkey on their hands. They blew it by putting Pacquiao in with Tim Bradley a third time last April, and now they’re on the verge of another disappointing fight on November 5.

Vargas, 27, won the vacant WBO World welterweight title last March in beating Sadam Ali by a 9th round knockout. It was an improvement for Vargas over his previous contest against Bradley in which he lost by a 12 round unanimous decision in June 2015. Vargas appeared to only win the 12th round. As bad as Bradley lost to Pacquiao recently, it’s not good that Pacquiao is fighting Vargas.

If Pacquiao wins this fight with flying colors, it’s going to be interesting to see who Arum matches him up against next. Does he put him in with one of his own Top Rank fighters like Terence Crawford or does Arum go outside of his stable of fighters to match him up against someone else? To a certain extent, it’s up to Pacquiao. If he doesn’t want to fight Crawford, who has failed to become a big star despite Arum sticking him on PPV in his last fight, then Top Rank might need to match him against someone outside of their company. They can’ bring Bradley back for a fourth fight, because the boxing public are sick of seeing needless rematches involving Pacquiao fighting the same guys over and over again. Arum needs to bring in some new blood for Pacquiao, and unfortunately for him the best fighters are outside of his Top Rank stable.

Vargas has shown punching power lately in knocking out Sadam Ali. If he can come up with good power on his shots against Pacquiao, he might be able to score a knockout if he hits him with a good enough shot. Pacquiao hasn’t faced a puncher since his 6th round knockout loss to Juan Manuel Marquez in 2012. Vargas isn’t considered a puncher, but he looked plenty powerful in his last fight against Sadam Ali. If Pacquiao gets knocked out by Vargas, we could see him going back into retirement. This would not be good news for Arum, because he likely is hoping Pacquiao sticks around long enough for him to fight Crawford. With Pacquiao fighting Crawford, it might make it difficult for the American fighter to become a big name in the sport. Arum doesn’t have a PPV replacement for Pacquiao. The 84-year-old promoter has some good fighters in his stable, but none of them are PPV attraction, and none of them appear to be capable of becoming one someday.

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