MANNY PACQUIAO SCORES THE BIGGEST WIN OF HIS CAREER PUMMELING OSCAR DE LA HOYA
Manny Pacquiao had the fight of his life Saturday night at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. Meanwhile, his opponent, Oscar De La Hoya, just looked old. Pacquiao was leading 80-71 on all three judges’ cards when De La Hoya couldn’t come out for the ninth round. Instead of finishing his career being carried out on his shield, De La Hoya may have ended it slumped over sitting on a stool. By not coming out for the ninth round, De La Hoya officially gave Pacquiao a TKO and the fight, but the outcome was never in doubt from the opening bell.
Pacquiao asserted himself as not only the pound-for-pound champion, but he emerged from Saturday’s match as the biggest name in boxing and the sport’s top draw. He simply dominated the fight. He won every round on every judge’s scorecard. That included two rounds where the Philipino boxer was so clearly winning that he was awarded a 10-8 round.
Pacquiao not only landed nearly four times as many punches as De La Hoya (195-51) but he landed those shots at a better rate (59%) and they were harder. The seventh round was brutal-possibly the worst of De La Hoya’s career. Pacquiao landed 45 power punches in that round alone compared to De La Hoya’s 4.
Some thought that Pacquiao, who had to gain considerable weight for the fight, might not be big or strong enough for De La Hoya. Instead, it was De La Hoya who withered. De La Hoya’s performance was so lackluster that it probably ended his brilliant career. While being interviewed in the ring following the fight, De La Hoya probably heard the most boos of his entire career. That at a venue, the MGM Grand Garden Arena, that was the site of some of De La Hoya’s biggest moments in the ring.
Despite his lopsided loss, De La Hoya leaves boxing with his legacy in tact as one of the sport’s all-time greats. Meanwhile Pacquiao puts himself in position to make hundreds of millions of dollars. It appears he will be boxing’s top draw for a long time to come. Up next for Pacquiao may be a fight at 147 pounds against British fighter Ricky Hatton.