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Sports

Buboy says Mosley won't run

SPORTING CHANCE - Joaquin M. Henson -

LAS VEGAS – Manny Pacquiao’s assistant trainer and boyhood pal Buboy Fernandez doesn’t think Sugar Shane Mosley will chase down the defending WBO welterweight champion in their scheduled 12-round tussle at the MGM Grand Garden Arena this morning (Manila time).

“Mosley won’t run,” said Fernandez. “He’ll be standing in the middle of the ring looking to counter then he’ll try to run over Manny with his strength. We’ve studied his style carefully and we think that’s what he’ll do. Whatever he does, Manny is prepared to do what it takes to knock him out. This could end early. Once Mosley feels Manny’s power, I don’t think he’ll want to go on. Manny will go in and out. Mosley won’t know what will hit him.”

Fernandez said even as Mosley has never been knocked out and supposedly has a durable chin, the fight might just finish sooner than later.

“Something might happen very quickly,” he said. “You don’t know. I don’t think Mosley has the legs to go 12 rounds with Manny especially if he’s getting hit. Mosley will try to go to the body. His power is from the right hand. But before he can throw it, Manny will be in there throwing a left straight. I think it’s the left, not the right, that will bring down Mosley.”

* * *

At the weigh-in the other day, Pacquiao wore a yellow Nike shirt that was flown in from the company’s headquarters in Beaverton, Oregon, just a few hours before.

The front of the shirt depicts two red boxing gloves with the thumbs joined together to form what looks like a heart. The MP logo in blue is at the top under a red quarter sun with three rays. The portrait is encased in a circle of words with rays streaming outwards and “Pac-Man” inscribed in a banner under the gloves. The circle of words reads: “Don’t tell your God you have a problem, tell your problem you have a great God.” The Nike swoosh is under the banner.  

Nike Philippines’ marketing services manager Tony Atayde, who flew in from Manila, said Pacquiao asked for the yellow shirt last Wednesday after declaring his call for Filipino unity in a press conference. He also announced he would wear yellow gloves for the Mosley fight.

“We’ve learned from working with Manny to always be ready for any eventuality,” said Atayde. “When Manny asked for a yellow shirt to wear for the weigh-in, we immediately phoned the guys at Nike in Beaverton. The design was already made, something that came out of discussions with Manny and three Nike designers in meetings in General Santos City last year. The problem was we had no yellow shirts for the design.”

Atayde said by hook or by crook, the yellow shirts had to be delivered. Sure enough, a few hours before the weigh-in, a box of 25 specially-made yellow shirts arrived by express mail. 

 Pacquiao will wear blue Nike shoes for the fight.

“This weekend has been crazy,” said Atayde. “The Niketown store at Caesars Palace is supposed to be closed for renovations but because of Manny’s fight, it was partially opened. The entire floor area is 30,000 square feet and what was opened was 6,000 square feet selling exclusively Manny apparel and shoes. At midnight the other day, we sold about 120 pairs of the new limited edition 1.3 trainer shoes in 30 minutes. It’s incredible that for every 10 customers in the store, only two are Filipinos meaning Manny has really become a certified global icon.”

* * *

Ilocos Sur Gov. Chavit Singson said he’s sure that Pacquiao will knock out Mosley but hesitated to guess in which round Sugar Shane will be dissolved.

In betting windows, there are odds for every round where Pacquiao could score a knockout. The favorite round among bettors is the seventh round with odds of 8-1. The first three rounds are the least preferred by knockout wagers with odds of 15-1.

For Pacquiao to win by knockout, a wager of $11 will win $5 and for the Filipino star to win on points, a bet of $5 will win $6. A 12-round draw has odds of 25-1. Pacquiao has figured in two draws in his career – a sixth round technical draw with the late Agapito Sanchez in 2001 and a split 12-round draw with Juan Manuel Marquez in 2004. Mosley is coming off a split 12-round draw with Sergio Mora.

Basketball star Benjie Paras, who is in town to watch the fight, said he’s not a betting man and won’t put down money whichever way. “I think Manny will knock out Mosley in three rounds but you don’t know about Manny sometimes because he’s such a generous guy,” said Paras. “He might take pity on Mosley and let him go the distance like he did to Margarito. I’m here to watch the fight and cheer for Manny. No gambling for me.”

Movie star Cesar Montano said it won’t be an early knockout win for Pacquiao. In his opinion, Pacquiao will work hard for the win particularly as Mosley is dangerous in the first few rounds. But by the seventh or eighth round, Montano said Mosley should be ready to go.

AGAPITO SANCHEZ

ATAYDE

BEAVERTON

BENJIE PARAS

MANNY

MOSLEY

PACQUIAO

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