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    Roach doubts Rios can take Pacman's punch
    By Dino Maragay Updated Thursday August 22, 2013 - 12:00am
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    Manny Pacquiao, left, and Brandon Rios  PHILBOXING.COM            

    MANILA, Philippines - Freddie Roach has expressed doubts on Brandon Rios' ability to take a punch at welterweight since the Mexican-American banger has fought below 147 pounds in his young career.

    Rios will meet Manny Pacquiao in a welterweight bout on Nov. 24 at the Venetian Macao Resort in Macau, China and Roach believes his ward has the advantage in punching power.  

    "We need to put combinations together and then get out of harm's way because Brandon will be swinging back. We'll box and bang. At 147, Manny's a big puncher and we don't think Brandon can take a punch from a big puncher at '47," Roach said in a report by Victor Salazar thaboxingvoice.com.

    Pacquiao has had a handful of fights at welterweight, something Roach thinks will work to the Filipino icon's advantage.

    He's (Rios) only fought twice at '40 and this is his first fight at '47. (Mike) Alvarado was not really a big puncher. He's (Rios) usually fought guys at '35," Roach added.

    Nevertheless, the multi-awarded trainer acknowledges the threat Rios poses. The Oxnard, California-based fighter, who has only lost once in his career - against Mike Alvarado in their rematch last March - loves to mix it up inside and has proven to be a tough nut to crack.

    That's why Roach is vowing to send in a well-prepared Pacquiao.

    "We have a good game plan set up for Brandon. He's a very tough guy in the pocket. He's dangerous there. Footwork and angles will be very important in the fight and whoever can pull the game will win the fight," the bespectacled trainer said.

    Pacquiao is coming off back-to-back losses, and Roach is looking at no less than a knockout win against Rios to make sure the fighting congressman's career is back on track.

    "I think we'll stop him at some point of the way. To be impressive, we have to knock him out. It's a big fight and we need to be impressive. If you hurt this guy at the right time, you take him out. I think my guy is going to be 100 percent ready by fight time," he ended.

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