2020 has been a hard year for the sport of boxing, and we are left wondering what the future is for a lot of fighters.
One of those fighters is 41-year old Manny Pacquiao. Despite being a veteran in the sport, and having increasing duties as a Filipino senator, the Filipino legend is still one of the biggest names in the sport.
Last July, Pacquiao scored a huge victory over former champion Keith Thurman in Las Vegas. Pacquiao may be older, but he still has the speed, skills, power, and experience to really give a lot of fighters trouble. But who will we see Manny face?
There was possible talk of a fight with Terence Crawford (WBO welterweight champion), but Crawford appears to be possibly facing Kell Brook instead. As crazy as it sounds, there is actually talk of Pacquiao possibly facing retired UFC superstar Conor McGregor. McGregor’s only boxing match to date was a 10th round TKO loss to Floyd Mayweather.
Justin Fortune has been around Pacquiao long before the fame, and doesn’t see the Irish trash talker as being worth the time.
“Why even make that guy rich?” said Fortune to the Manila Times. “And it will do absolutely nothing for Pacquiao as far as his legacy. Manny will destroy Conor McGregor inside the three rounds. He will obliterate him I mean, my God, this is boxing. We are boxers. McGregor is an MMA guy and we can’t do MMA, and he can’t box, that’s very simple.”
However, Pacquiao assistant Jayke Joson disagrees, as he also spoke to the Manila Times about the situation. And even he believes that legacy is involved.
“The result of the fight will give us the answer to the question who is the best boxer of all time. And who’s the better boxer, Mayweather, who won after 10 rounds or Senator MP? That’s why everybody wants to see Pacquiao versus McGregor to compare it to the Mayweather versus McGregor fight.”
That alone is a bit of a stretch to be honest, because the last thing we need to do when measuring greatness amongst the boxing greats is to use Conor McGregor as some kind of measuring stick.
But perhaps the McGregor fight would be fun. If anything, the leadup would be amazing. And McGregor surely is a little bigger than Manny, so who knows if he would try to bully him and change the complexion of the fight by using his size. Plus, McGregor is ten years younger than Manny, and sometimes youth is served in combat sports.
If Pacquiao turned his focus back to the sport of boxing, he will see big names all around him. Guys like Errol Spence, Terence Crawford, Shawn Porter, and Danny Garcia would all make for interesting fights. Spence is actually facing Garcia in November, so perhaps the winner of that fight would make a lot of sense.
Let’s just enjoy Manny for as long as we can.