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Arum says Pacquiao-Horn rematch possible for November or December

Manny Pacquiao

By Dan Ambrose: Top Rank promoter Bob Arum is saying there’s a tremendous amount of interest in Australia for a rematch between Jeff Horn and Manny Pacquiao for November or Australia. Pacquiao hasn’t made a decision yet whether he’ll fight again. Pacquiao is turning 39-years-old in December, and he was beaten by Horn in losing a 12 round unanimous decision last Saturday night in Brisbane, Australia.

Horn picked up Pacquiao’s WBO welterweight title in beating him.

The blame for Pacquiao’s defeat can be spread all around to not just his trainer Freddie Roach, but also to Arum for him choosing to stage the fight in Australia instead of a venue that would favor Pacquiao.

When you have a fighter that has been you’re main money guy for the last 10 years, it’s not a good idea to have him go and fight in foreign country in front of a fan favorite like Horn. When you have a valuable fighter like Pacquiao, it’s probably not a good idea to have him fight in another fighter’s home country. Pacquiao was the WBO champion. Why did he have to fight in the challenger’s home country?

Arum should have nixed that idea and made sure Pacquiao fought in a venue that would be friendly to him. Right off the bat, Pacquiao was put in a bad position where he’d have the crowd going against him. What Pacquiao didn’t know is the judging wouldn’t be favorable, and the referee would do nothing to control the fouling. It still starts with the terrible idea of Pacquiao having to fight in Horn’s home country. Horn had done nothing in his pro career to rate having a famous fighter like Pacquiao give him home advantage. Roach wasn’t assertive in the corner. He should have been.

Pacquiao and his trainer Roach are not happy with the judging and the referee that worked the fight. The scores were controversial. Unbelievably, one judge scored the fight 117-111 for Horn, which comes out to 9 rounds to 3. That scoring seemed off by all 3 judges, especially the judge that saw it as a wide victory for Horn,

Arum wasn’t pleased at the passive job that Roach did in the corner. Arum wonders why Roach wasn’t complaining to the referee about the headlocks and other rough tactics that Horn was allowed to get away with during the fight. Arum thinks that Roach should have been talking to the referee.

“What the hell is wrong with that corner? Why wasn’t Freddie Roach out in the ring between rounds yelling at the referee? It’s his job,” said Arum to the latimes.com.

In the past, Roach would let the referee know if Pacquiao’s opponents were doing something that was out of bounds. But for some reason, Roach was disengaged during the fight last Saturday. Roach saw the different tactics that Horn was using to play dirty during the fight, and yet he didn’t do anything about. Horn was holding and hitting Pacquiao during the clinch, head-butting, and pushing him around. Horn was using his size. He looked a lot heavier than Pacquiao. The weight difference between the two looked extreme. Pacquiao looked like he was fighting someone from the 154 pound division.

“The states in Australia are already beginning to bid crazy numbers to have this fight in November-December. The interest is sky-high,” said Arum about the Pacquiao vs. Horn 2 rematch.

We don’t know if Pacquiao is going to fight Horn again. He has yet to make a decision. Pacquiao isn’t happy with the way the fight was scored, and he doesn’t like the job the referee Mark Nelson did in allowing Horn to use dirty tactics against him.

Pacquiao’s adviser Michael Koncz says he plans on being more involved in the selection of the officials if there’s to be a rematch. Koncz will work with the World Boxing Organization to pick the officials. Koncz should have involved himself for this fight last Saturday. The questionable job the judges and referee did left Pacquiao with a defeat instead of a victory.

‘This is not the Manny Pacquiao that we had even a year ago.’ You can’t be a senator and fight part-time. And he’s getting older, not younger,” said Arum.

Pacquiao is still pretty much the same fighter that beat Tim Bradley in their third fight last year in April. The difference is Pacquiao was fighting a younger opponent in Horn, who had a big weight advantage over him, and he was using a lot of physical tactics that was border-lined fouling.

Horn didn’t look like a welterweight. He looked like someone that belonged at 154. Horn reminded me of Saul Canelo Alvarez when he was still able to barely make 147. Canelo would lose a lot of weight to get to the 147 lb. limit, and then he’d rehydrate and come into his fights looking huge. Horn was just much too big for Pacquiao with the way he was fighting. There needed to be some adapting by Pacquiao to negate dirty fighting that Horn was using. It’s unclear what Roach was telling Pacquiao in between rounds to help him deal with the physical way that Horn was fighting him.

Pacquiao and Horn’s cuts may need more time to heal than just 4 months. December might be the best bet for a rematch between them if Pacquiao agrees to it. But with Arum talking about the rematch taking place in Australia, Pacquiao could be in another tough position where he could lose another debatable decision. Horn’s game plan for the rematch will probably be a similar one as the first fight. That means he’ll be looking to be physical to impose his size on the smaller Pacquiao. Horn will probably make weight, but even if he comes in over the 147lb limit, the fight will likely still take place.

There’s too much money for it be canceled because Horn missing the weight limit. The reason I mention the possibility of Horn potentially missing the weight is because he was struggling badly to make weight for last Saturday’s fight. Horn had to drop a lot of weight in the week of the fight. it looked for a moment that that he wouldn’t make the weight. Fortunately for Horn, he made the weight. Losing all that water weight and putting it back on didn’t hurt him like it does many fighters. One reason for that is Horn’s youth. He’s still young at 29, and he can lose a lot of weight and put it back on without being drained.

Pacquiao has a lot of pride. It might be difficult for him to walk away from boxing without him trying to avenge his loss to Horn. Pacquiao knows he can beat Horn. He just needs to do it again but with a different set of judges and good referee that is willing to control Horn’s aggressive tactics.




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