Pacquiao answers his critics with stylish win over brave
It looked like the Manny Pacquiao of old as the Filipino legend
took a wide unanimous decision over the hardworking but toothless
Brandon Rios. Pacquiao's win was characterised by his fantastic
movement around the ring and blistering hand speed.
Pacquiao enjoyed the most of a cagey opening round, and sent the
Cotai Arena crowd into a frenzy when it looked like he'd scored a
first round knockdown which was correctly ruled as a slip.
In the second, Pacquiao asserted his control on the fight and
really stepped up through the gears in the final minute of the
round to make life uncomfortable for the American Rios.
It was more of the same in the third as Pacquiao's let his quick
hands fire a series of stinging combos into Rios. The 27-year-old
American did well to stick in the rounds and occasionally return
fire, but Rios couldn't land any meaninfgul shots of his own to
The Filipino legend, who dedicated the fight to his countrymen
affected by typhoon Haiyan, showed no signs of slowing down in the
fourth round. He continued his swift movement around the ring while
banging in some fierce combos with his quick hands.
Rios weathered a storm in the fifth after Pacquiao caught him
flush with a rocket of a straight left hand early in the round. It
was becoming clear that the Filipino's movement around the ring was
the key to his success, as Rios simply couldn't get near him to
land any punches.
Pacquiao looked like he was returning to his scintilating best
in the sixth as his speed and movement around the ring was too much
for Rios. The American fighter suffered a nasty cut to his eye as
well as taking more heavy punishment from the former
pound-for-pound king Pacquiao.
Round seven saw Pacquiao continue his relentless assault on Rios
as he put more trademark combinations together as the American
continued to walk forward into Pacman's fire.
The local favourite settled in and coasted through the final
five rounds, content to pick Rios off and elude any punishment.
Rios barely landed a punch of note during a one-sided 36 minutes,
after which Pacquiao was awarded all three scorecards 120-108,
Manny Pacquiao risking it all against Brandon Rios
Former pound-for-pound king Manny Pacquiao (left) faces one of
the most important fights of his career against power puncher
Brandon "Bam Bam" Rios (right) as BoxNation returns to Macau.
The Filipino legend suffered a torrid 2012 with defeats against
Timothy Bradley and Juan Manuel Marquez threatening to blemish his
previously fantastic fight record. A third consecutive defeat could
spell the end for the 34-year-old eight division world champion
American 27-year-old Rios, too, is looking to recover from a
defeat; the first of his career. Last March, he suffered a
unanimous decision defeat against Mike Alvarado, but knows that a
headline-grabbing win and move to 32-1 would put his career back on