Saturday, December 8, 2012

The War to Prove...

One of the great fighters of all time will be lacing up the gloves to meet his arch enemy, an inferior fighter who inexplicably reaches the apex of his skills when facing the modern equivalent of Tamerlane...Manny Pacquiao. Though not afflicted with the physical maladies that weighed heavy upon the twelfth century universal conqueror, Manny Pacquiao is every bit the Asian hero and looks this evening to finally thwart his longtime enemy, the noble challenger Juan Manuel Marquez.

They will fight at a catch-weight of 143 lbs. and it is expected that this fourth fight between the two combatants will finally end the popular enmity that has brewed between these magnificent boxers. This isn't the same melodramatic frame-up as Achilles and Hector; no, there will be no gods to intervene tonight. This confrontation will pit the counter-puncher against the aggressor, the Black Mamba versus the Mongoose, and the battle will likely reflect the history that led these two fighters back to each other.

Marquez is a classic counter puncher who relies heavily upon the aggression of his opponent. he is not savvy enough nor physically apt to take the fight to any top tier combatant. However, he is uniquely possessed of the counter punchers gift of timing and power. He is a proud warrior of Mexican heritage who relies on his mind as much as his volatile emotion. Though hammered in the past from pillar to post by Floyd Mayweather Jr., a fighter whose physical abilities are outside the ken of normal man, he is yet as dangerous as the cobra, the Mamba, a snake who waits for the perfect moment of weakness to strike. He is a world class fighter, a champion, whose heart cannot be questioned and it is because he is so dangerous that this fight, the fourth in a trilogy (yes, I know it means three) to finally prove who is the best, is the draw it is. Mayweather may be acknowledged king but these two are the people's champions and to his eternal regret shall he hear their names called in earnest fervor.

Pacquiao is like the equatorial tempests of the east, building slowly before spilling over the shore as an angry god filled with spite and malice. Only this god is a representative of the people - a martyr of sorts who places himself in harms way in an effort to spare the common man from the arduous and painful journey of his fistic betters. In the ring Manny Pacquiao is a tropical Typhoon - punching fists, whirlwind movement, and an inexorable ability to keep coming forward in the best Howardian Iron Man tradition ...always moving forward and cognizant of the social burden he carries as an Asian champion in a western man sport.

My prediction is based on what I've seen and what I know of both boxers. Manny is prepossessed in his duties as a member of the Philippine House of Representatives and pulled in too many directions. Yet, he is the better fighter while Marquez is the better boxer. This fight will come down to desire - who has the desire to stand and fight, to contest yet again the dregs of honor and notoriety, and the simple will to win that will be required of the victor in this fight.

As such, it is apparent that I admire both fighters and it with some reticence and indecision that I declare Manny Pacquaio the victor by 11th round TKO. I have seen Marquez do amazing things but his desire to finally prove that he is the best will undo him and lure him from his counter punching shell. He will seek to annihilate his foe and open himself up to the power-punching dynamism that Manny is known for. There is not a man at this weight who can long endure Pacquiao's fists nor his undeniable will to win.

Manny Pacquaio TKO 11th round in exciting fashion.