Manny Pacquiao is still a very big name in boxing even though he his last three fights haven’t gone very well (a disputed win against Juan Manuel Marquez, a disputed loss against Tim Bradley and then KOed into next century by Juan Manuel Marquez).
Many people assumed that Pacquiao would face JMM in a 5th a fight, but JMM decided he was satisfied with his walk off homerun. A rematch with Timothy Bradley was discussed, but in the end Bradley and Marquez decided to fight each other. According to Top Rank they offered Bradley and Marquez big time money, but neither wanted to go to China where Top Rank is trying to make a home for their big time fights.
That left Mike Alvarado and Brandon Rios as possible opponents. Rios and Alvarado had engaged in two epic fights with each winning one. Alvarado looked to be the frontrunner for Pacquiao fight considering he had just beat Rios and had a belt.
In the end, Rios name recognition and the fact he is a more limited boxer than Alvarado got him the shot.
“People know what Rios brings to the table,” Arum said. “People want to see a real fight, and that is what you get with Rios. We’re building a business in Macau and China and these are the kinds of fights — real action fights — that they want to see.”
“I think it’s a good match. People who watch boxing have differing views of the sport,” Arum said. “Some like to see an artistic performance like Floyd Mayweather gave [against Robert Guerrero on Saturday night] and other people like to see two guys knocking the s— out of each other. Me, I love a match when the guys go after each other and throw bombs. That’s my preference. It doesn’t mean it’s the right preference, but this is one of those kinds of fights.”
Rios has power, even though he is nowhere near the boxer Juan Manuel Marquez, so there is some danger for Pacquiao. We have seen the peak of Pacquiao’s career, so now it is just about getting entertaining fights as long as he decides to keep fighting.
One of the interesting things is because of the time difference in China, they will be fighting early in the morning, so it can be shown in primetime in the states.
It will be HBO Pay-Per-View event on November 23rd.