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Keith Thurman: I DESERVE a rematch with Manny Pacquiao

Image: Keith Thurman: I DESERVE a rematch with Manny Pacquiao

By Chris Williams: Keith ‘One Time’ Thurman insists he deserves a rematch with Manny Pacquiao after losing a 12 round decision by razor-thin margins last year in July in Las Vegas, Nevada. Thurman (29-1, 22 KOs) lost his WBA welterweight title to Pacquiao, but he didn’t have a rematch clause in the contract to force a second fight.

Thurman wants a second chance to correct the mistakes he made in their last fight. Those mistakes involved Thurman, 31, relaxing for a moment in rounds one and ten, letting Pacquiao clobber him with big shots that cost him the fight.

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Thurman was knocked down in the opening round when Pacquiao caught him with a shot when he was backing up. It was a flash knockdown, but nonetheless, it put Thurman behind the eightball from the very start.

In the tenth, Pacquiao hurt Thurman with a body shot that knocked the wind out of him temporarily. Thurman didn’t go down, but he was in distress for five seconds after and forced to run around the ring. At the end of the match, the judges gave it to Pacquiao by these scores: 115-112, 114-113 and 115-112.

Thurman talks Pacquiao rematch

“I would love that. My mind mentally would love a rematch,” said Thurman to PepTalkUK on wanting a rematch with Manny Pacquiao. “I never had a rematch. It’s a good rematch.

“I think it’s a deserved rematch. It’s an epic fight. Really, it’s whatever doors will open. We’re not getting a lot of talk. It’s not easy for people to commit.

“A lot of networks don’t have a lot of dates out there. It’s really what doors are going to open up, and what opportunities I’m going to be handed.

Pacquiao (62-7-2, 39 KOs) still hasn’t made up his mind about who he wants to face in his next fight, and it might be a good idea for him to face Thurman again. Manny isn’t likely going to meet Errol Spence Jr or Terence Crawford for his next match, and those are two guys boxing fans want to see him face.

It’s believed that Mikey Garcia is in the first position to be the next opponent for the 41-year-old Pacquiao, and that’s not a great fight. Mikey looks terrible at 147, and he needs to prove himself before asking Pacquiao for a fight.

If Pacquiao faces Mikey, he may regret afterward when the boxing public complains about not getting value for their hard-earned money. It wouldn’t be an issue if the Pacquiao vs. Garcia were shown on regular Fox for fans to see.

That’s not likely to be the case. If Pacquiao faces Mikey, they’ll stick it on pay-per-view, and ask boxing fans to pay $70 to watch. Fans want value for their money right now, and they’re not going to be pleased to watch Pacquiao dominate an over-matched Mikey.

Keith’s left hand is healing well

“I’m going to be hitting a golf ball again before I hit another person because, with hand surgery, you can’t play golf, you can’t box, and you can’t do a lot of things,” said Thurman.

“In the rehab process, I actually let playing golf determine what stage is my hand at. I remember there was one month it was doing good in recovery, and I got out there and tested it for nine holes. I said, ‘You know what? And I think it’s a little too weak.

“I gave it one more month, and I went out there, and I’ve been slapping the ball ever since. Every month with what I’ve been doing, it’s been getting stronger. And I’m just looking forward to getting back into our gyms and doing what I do best—getting some competition.

“I’m patient. I’m not rushing because I’m pretty sure I could set-up some backyard brawl here in Florida if I really needed to,” said Thurman.

Keith may need a little more time for his left hand to heal completely, but that’s fine because he doesn’t have any exciting fights being offered to him. Errol Spence Jr isn’t interested in facing Thurman because he’s not happy about he didn’t give him a shot years ago.

Pacquiao will need to make a decision soon about his next opponent if he wants to fight in 2020. He probably won’t be able to compete in front of a live audience because of the situation with the pandemic, but he can still make money from pay-per-view if he selects a famous guy like Thurman.

If Pacquiao wants to fight in December, that will give Thurman enough time to finish rehabbing his surgically repaired left hand.

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