Manny Pacquiao says that speed will be the key in defeating Brandon Rios. The Filipino legend who makes his eagerly anticipated ring return believes that the outcome will be decided on who lands first, and that’s why he’ll be victorious on fight night (or fight morning, as the case may be).
“I’m focusing on quickness, speed and some different techniques I can apply for his style.
“He’s a very aggressive fighter but I’m faster than him and speed and power will be the key to winning this fight. We chose Rios because he’s the best opponent for me and we can give an exciting action fight for the fans.
“The difference with this training camp is that I started early; this is one of the longest preparations in my boxing career. Also it’s good because it’s the first time I’ve trained in General Santos for a big fight like this. My team is very happy with how I’ve looked. Our training camp was good, so I’m very relaxed and happy going into the fight.”
This belief has been backed up by his promoter Bob Arum who believes that fight fans are going to be treated to the ‘old’ Pacquiao, who dazzled in performances against the likes of Oscar De La Hoya and Ricky Hatton. Arum offered his own take on Pacquiao and his training camp:
“I was over in General Santos a few weeks ago for the media day and Manny looks like the old Manny, at the top of his game. He looked like when he fought De La Hoya, Hatton and Cotto. I was trying to figure out why? And number one, it’s obvious he has fewer distractions over there. He has a gym that’s on lockdown and people just can’t wander in. When he trained at the Wildcard in LA the Filipino people living in the United States would come from San Francisco from San Diego, they’d drive to the gym and they’d say please let us in because we drove so long.
“We don’t have that distraction – we haven’t got it in General Santos. Also, Manny is involved in so many different things; political things, financial things in the Philippines. So because of the time difference he would work from 5am in the morning, he would be in the gym that afternoon and then he would come back to his house in LA and he’d be on the phone all night because that was day in the Philippines.
“People didn’t realize that, he was up all night talking on the phone. Now when he’s training in the Philippines he lives a normal life. He gets up in the morning, he trains, works out, does whatever business he does in the afternoon, comes, trains in the gym and goes to sleep. And 10pm, 11pm, there’s nobody for him to call. Everybody is sleeping. People didn’t realize that but it’s occurred to me that that’s why a lot of people said in his last few fights how distracted he was.”