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Alex Ariza says Pacquiao can return to form

Manny Pacquiao Terence Crawford

By Chris Williams: Strength coach Alex Ariza says he thinks Manny Pacquiao (59-7-2, 38 Kos) can return to his old form with the help of science. Pacquiao is 39-years-old, and he’s coming off of a 12 round decision defeat at the hands of Jeff Horn.

Pacquiao fought like he wasn’t the same guy that he’d been years earlier. If Ariza can help Pacquiao find the Fountain of Youth, he could turn his career around and assist him in avenging his loss to Horn and defeating Terence Crawford.

Pacquiao’s promoter Bob Arum of Top Rank would be scuttled if he defeats the 30-year-old Crawford, because he’s trying to turn the Nebraska native into a pay-per-view star for his company. Pacquiao would ruin Arum’s plans if he beats Crawford while finishing up his lengthy career.

“Yes, he is,” said Ariza to Fighthype when asked if he thinks Pacquiao can return to form. “You have to be able to accept the fact that you don’t know everything. You have to be able to open your ideas and allow science to also play a part in it. You can’t train a 38-year-old guy the same way you do a 28-year-old. He won’t respond. You have to accept it,” said Ariza.

Maybe Pacquiao should dump trainer Freddie Roach and let Ariza take over the reins. Pacquiao has got nothing to lose. He’s probably going to get beat as soon as Arum matches him against Crawford. If Ariza can lead Pacquiao to the fabled Fountain of Youth to have him drink from it’s waters, he could possibly make you young again to where he can do a number on Crawford. I imagine that won’t make Arum too happy.

Ariza probably could help Pacquiao if he had enough time to work with him. But with Pacquiao spending a lot of his time in the Philippines with his senatorial job, it’s doubtful that Ariza could make a lot of changes to his strength and conditioning. In Pacquiao’s recent loss to Jeff Horn last July, he ran out of gas badly in the second half of the fight. When Pacquiao needed strength, he didn’t have it. He didn’t have the conditioning either. Pacquiao came close to knocking Horn out in the 9th round. He could have finished Horn off in the 10th, but he was too exhausted from throwing punches in the previous round.

It looks like Pacquiao’s career is going to end badly with him facing Crawford and losing to him by a knockout in 2018. Arum wants Pacquiao to fight Crawford, but it’s probably not going to go well for him unless he can find some training strategy that will make him years younger. At this point, it’s worth a try for Pacquiao to hire Ariza back and follow his regimen to build him up again. Whatever Pacquiao’s trainer Freddie Roach has had him working on in recent years, it’s not been working. Pacquiao lost to Horn, and he was beaten by Floyd Maweather. Pacquiao also looked bad in his fight against Jessie Vargas in 2016.

Ariza was Pacquiao strength coach during a part of his best years at welterweight. Ariza helped Pacquiao gain strength and size for him to compete with welterweights.

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