Pound-for-pound king Manny Pacquiao may give away around ten pounds when he enters the ring in “The Event” against Ghana’s tough guy Joshua Clottey at the unbelievable $1.2 billion Dallas Cowboys Stadium on Sunday, Manila Time.
Clottey said earlier that he was going to have a hearty meal after the weigh in and the consensus is that he will enter the ring at around 160 pounds on fight night although his trainer Lenny De Jesus told us the other day that he wanted to make sure Clottey comes in around 155 so his weight won’t slow him down against the super fast Pacquiao.
Pacquiao’s conditioning expert Alex Ariza said he expects Pacquiao to weight around 150 at fight time which would definitely give Clottey, who can take a big shot, an advantage in weight to go with his slight advantage in height which was evident when the two fighters posted for the media.
Try as they might to provide the customary stare-down, Pacquiao and Clottey couldn’t pull it off and instead smiled at each other further accentuating what Pacquiao has always maintained – there is no need for trash-talk.
Indeed, if there is one added dimension to the Pacquiao legend is that like the late, great Gabriel “Flash” Elorde, he earns the respect of his opponents by being a gentleman in and outside the ring.
The two Filipinos featured in the undercard also made weight without trouble.
Featherweight Michael Farenas, a protégé of former two-division world champion Gerry Penalosa came in at 127 1/5 pounds as against the 126 of veteran Joe Morales while bantamweight Eden Sonsona, a protégé of Pacquiao’s former business manager, the late Rod Nazario weighed 119.7 pounds while his opponent, former world champion, veteran Mauricio Pastrana checked in at 119 ½ pounds.
In the WBC lightweight title fight former champion David Diaz from whom Pacquiao won the title with a crushing 9th round tipped the scales at 134 while champion Humberto Sotto was slightly heavier at 134 1/5 pounds.
Diaz believes that Pacquiao faces "a tough fight against Clottey, but its a winnable fight for Pacquiao." WBA super flyweight interim champion Nonito "The Filipino Flash" Donaire says he expects Pacquiao to win by a twelve round decision and the chances of winning by a knockout are about 30 percent.
Diaz, who came back from the loss to Pacquiao on June 28, 2008 to win a majority decision over former WBC and IBF lightweight champion and WBC super featherweight champion Jesus Chavez last September 26 said he is “feeling good and f eels blessed to get another opportunity to fight for the world title. I am getting ready and hope everything will go right.”
He said the almost six months break since the Chavez fight wont affect him since he has been sparring a lot and while its not the same thing Diaz said “I think I’ll be okay.”
Diaz has been training under Mike Garcia and Jim Strickland in Chicago and said although Sotto “is a tough guy but I’ll work that body and try to get inside of him. He’s a real good technician in the way he uses his reach but if you get inside of that and work him I think we’ll be okay.”
Diaz recalled how well he was treated when he was Pacquiao’s guest along with Edwin Valero at Pacquiao’s lavish 30th birthday celebration in his hometown of General Santos City in December 2008. He said “they were all very nice and give them my best wishes.”