Will Pacquiao’s anger against Thurman help him win?
By Raj Parmar: As the welterweight championship showdown between Manny Pacquiao and Keith Thurman inches closer to taking place, members of Pacquiao’s camp have stated that the Filipino fighter is very angry at his opponent.
During the promotional build for the fight, Thurman acknowledged that he knows Pacquiao is deeply religious and that he will “crucify” Manny on fight night. Although Manny has kept his composure in public and has said that he will let his fists do the talking on fight night, this comment by Thurman has privately enraged The Pacman according to his inner circle.
Manny’s conditioning coach Just Fortune has revealed that he has not seen the eight-division world champion so upset in a very long time and that Manny has told him on more than one occasion that he is determined to knock Thurman out. Pacquiao is known to take his Christian beliefs very seriously and views Thurman’s comment as an assault on his faith.
Pacquiao trainer Freddie Roach has conceded that he is tempted to place a large bet on his fighter who will be the underdog for the first time in a fight since his battle with Floyd Mayweather Jr. The reason Roach is so optimistic is due to him feeling that Manny has his killer instinct back for this matchup and wants to win this fight more than usual.
While in the recent years Manny would not desire to violently knock his opponents due to his religious beliefs, Roach believes Manny will be going all out to put Thurman away before the final bell due to Thurman’s jabs at Pacquiao’s religious beliefs. It is true that Pacquiao’s greatest wins have come from him being very aggressive and violent in the ring against his opponents, however his greatest loss has come from his aggressiveness as well.
In their fourth career fight back in 2012, Pacquiao was knocked out unconscious in the sixth round by arch nemesis Juan Manuel Marquez after waging a reckless assault on Marquez in the prior rounds. Manny badly wanted to KO Marquez and end their rivalry for good, however his eagerness backfired against him and he walked into a monster right hand from Marquez.
Manny will be going up against a younger and bigger fighter in Thurman on July 20, and although his team is optimistic that Manny’s rage toward Thurman is a good thing and will help him win the fight; there also is a strong chance that Thurman can take full advantage of an emotional Pacquiao just like Marquez did in 2012.