Manny Pacquiao 61-7-2 (39) believes his handspeed will be the difference when he challenges WBA welterweight champion Keith ‘One Time’ Thurman 29-0 (22) at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada on July 20.
The 40-year-old veteran, who will be having his 71st pro bout, is a decade older than the undefeated American.
But the Filipino southpaw is confident that he has the edge in speed against the younger champion.
“I think what I saw in this fight is the speed, we know the fact that I’m faster than him,” Pacquiao said during FOX Sports’ ‘Face to Face’ preview with Thurman.
“We know that.”
Thurman admitted Pacquaio’s speed will be a factor, but insisted his own speed is underrated.
“I think my speed is underestimated,” Thurman said. “I think Pacquiao is fast. But what makes him so fast is he’s relentless. This hand, that hand, bop, bop, bop, bop, bop. You know, and then the combination, you get to see it just continuously come out as fast as he can let ‘em fly.
“I don’t know if my combinations look that fast, but when I’m in the ring with people I know that I get right in between in those special moments. And it’s my speed that opens up other opportunities in that ring.”
Pacquiao is coming off back-to-back wins over Lucas Matthysse and Adrien Broner after dropping a 12-round decision to Australia’s Jeff Horn two years ago.
Thurman returned to the ring in January after an almost two-year injury induced layoff to outpoint Josesito Lopez by majority decision.