Errol Spence could be out for one year, compromising plans for Pacquiao fight in early 2022

By Boxing News - 08/20/2021 - Comments

By Allan Fox: Errol Spence Jr may need up to one year before he’ll be able to return to the ring to continue his career following his retinal tear surgery, which could wreck plans on a fight with Manny Pacquiao in early 2022.

Lance Pugmire reports that Dr. Michael Davis, the guy who surgically repaired former three-division world champion Abner Mares’ retinal tear, says the time recovering 6 to 12 months.

Obviously, 6 months would be a best-case scenario with Spence coming back as fast as possible to fight Pacquiao in the first quarter of next year.

But if Spence’s recovery falls into the latter time frame, he won’t be available to fight Pacquiao until August or September of 2022.

Pacquiao could lose while waiting for Spence

The main problem with the Pacquiao-Spence fight being delayed that long is that Pacquiao will have a ton of pressure on him to fight a Terence Crawford, Josh Taylor, Keith Thurman, or Shawn Porter.

Image: Errol Spence could be out for one year, compromising plans for Pacquiao fight in early 2022

The chances of Pacquiao losing against those guys would be very high, and if that happens, you can forget about a fight between him and Spence.

Yeah, the Pacquiao vs. Spence fight could still happen, but there won’t’ be as much interest in the contest unless the Filipino star can avenge his loss.

“Dr. Michael Davis, who performed the retinal tear surgery on Abner Mares, tells me the expected layoff for a retinal detachment break like the one suffered by Errol Spence Jr, is six months to one year, compromising plans for a possible Manny Pacquiao fight opening in January,” said @PugBoxing.

It’ll be interesting to see if Spence can come back by early 2022, but even if he does, it may be too late to catch Pacquiao before someone beats him.

Thurman = ideal opponent for Pacquiao in late 2021

If Pacquiao’s team, the smart thing to do would be to set up a rematch with Keith Thurman, as it’s a fight that Manny can win. There won’t be the same kind of risk for Pacquiao fighting Thurman as there would be if he takes on Crawford, and also ‘One Time’ can do all the hard work of promoting the contest as he did in 2019.

There isn’t anyone in the welterweight division with the same ability to promote a fight as Keith Thurman, which makes him the ideal stay-busy opponent for Pacquiao to fight while he waits for Spence to recover from his eye surgery.

Manny must make adjustments for Ugas fight

“You’re still going to get a chance to see it. That fight is eventually going to happen,” Atlas at The Fight With Teddy Atlas. “I would be shocked if it doesn’t.

“Obviously, Pacquiao does have to win his fight with his replacement Ugas. I believe he’ll win that fight. You’re going to wind up seeing unless there’s an upset or if something really strange, which is possible if he [Pacquiao] suddenly gets old.

“Let me tell you about the replacement Ugas. Styles make fights,” Atlas continued. “Spence is a southpaw, but Ugas is not a southpaw. Manny has been preparing for a southpaw.

“He’ll make the adjustment. Now, he’s fighting an orthodox fighter [Yordenis]. Listen, he’s fought a million orthodox fighters, so it won’t be hard for him to max that adjustment, even though he’s been in camp for eight weeks for the most part working against southpaws. Ugas is in shape.

“He was on the undercard for this fight, so he was always preparing for this date, and it’s a great opportunity for him. So you would think that he’s mentally going to be where he needs to be.

“Ugas will have to deal with a southpaw. So, Ugas wasn’t preparing for a southpaw, so now he has to deal with a southpaw.

“And so that’s an adjustment on his part, Ugas, the style couldn’t be any more different than Spence because Spence is an aggressive fighter.

“Spence is a strong fighter, and he goes to the body in a consistent manner, he brings a lot of pressure, and he has a great jab,” said Atlas.

Yordenis not a great boxer

“Look, Spence is a dimensional fighter, and he can box, but he also likes to apply pressure. Ugas, not so much. And Ugas is a counter puncher. Ugas is a bronze medalist from the famous Cuban amateur team.

“They have great amateur fighters. He’s a guy that is going to be looking to take advantage of reckless aggression on Manny’s part; look to catch Manny coming in.

“And if Manny stands in front a little bit as he done with Mayweather, but if he does, what did Mayweather do? He used the southpaw killer, the right hand, the straight right hand, and he was able to catch Manny a lot with that standing in front.

“Ugas is going to look for a fight hand, the southpaw killer, if Manny stands in front. Ugas is going to look to counter Manny, as I said,” said Atlas.