The great Manny Pacquiao showed with his totally dominant win over an overwhelmed and overpowered Lucas Matthysse that he is still very much a force to be reckoned with. In scoring his first stoppage win since way back in 2009 (“a long time ago,” a victorious Pac Man grinned post-fight) the eight-weight king rolled back the clock. At least a little bit.
Okay, Matthysse is not an elite fighter, this despite his holding of a version of the WBA welterweight title, and we cannot get too carried away. Still, Pacquiao looked strong, he looked fast and he looked fully healthy – with absolutely no signs whatsoever of any shoulder trouble. Manny’s jab and hook were impressive weapons, as was his left uppercut; this being the shot that twice decked the defending champ. Can these weapons now trouble a big, on top of his game fighter?
There has been talk of a Pacquiao-Vasyl Lomachenko fight, as well as a Pacquiao-Terence Crawford fight. Perhaps more realistically, there is also Pacquiao-Amir Khan and Pacquiao-Jeff Horn II out there. Based on what we saw last night, how would Manny do in either of these four possible match-ups?
It’s quite hard to gauge too much from last night’s win, simply because Matthysse brought little to the fight; his slowness and his lack of thrown punches allowing Pacquiao to pretty much do as he pleased. Of course, it could be argued how a rejuvenated Pacquiao did not allow Matthysse to get anything going, that he made the Argentine look as poor as he did. But can Pacquiao now take away the best of Lomachenko, Crawford, Khan or Horn?
It’s likely Manny will be matched tough, in the big-money fights, therefore it’s entirely possible the southpaw dynamo will indeed be matched with either Lomachenko or Crawford. Ultimately it will likely be Bob Arum’s call, but Pacquiao would be a considerable underdog against “Loma” or against “Bud.”
If, however, Manny is matched realistically, against Horn or Khan or someone else, the party could continue. Still one of the most popular fighters out there today, Pacquiao thrilled his loyal fans last night. In terms of staying on top, it would be great to see Pacquiao get the chance to avenge his controversial points loss to Horn; in Malaysia.
For now though, Pac Man is back and he more than deserves to be able to call himself champ once more.