Welterweight title is up for grabs as Brandon Rios and Manny Pacquiao look to
redeem themselves after both suffering losses in their last fight. The boxing
odds may heavily favor Pacquiao, but where is the value for us sports bettors?
Brandon Rios (31-1-1,
Bam Bam Rios TKO'ed the previously undefeated Mike Alavarado
a year ago to claim the WBO Latino Light Welterweight title. Stop. Before I go
on can I just state for the record that there are too many organizations with
way too many championships? I mean
seriously, the Latino Light Welterweight championship? Perhaps there's an IBF
Middle-Age Jack Daniels title for which I might be eligible? But I digress.
Okay, so Rios came, he saw and he conquered with a big gold
belt around his waist that still wasn't a world championship but a step in the
right direction. However, Alvarado paid him back five months later in the
rematch when he earned a narrow unanimous decision over the Light Welterweight
Latino king. Rios now gets the legendary Pac Man to stand mano-a-mano with him
on Saturday, November 23rd. Sounds almost like a reward for losing
but nevertheless this should be a compelling fight and one that will either
cement the 27-year-old's reputation as one of the best in the world or expose
him as a high-priced gatekeeper in the welterweight class.
(54-5-2, 38 KO's)
Pac Man is in unchartered waters after losing his last two
fights, with the most recent being a sixth-round knockout at the hands of Juan
Manuel Marquez for the WBO "Champion of the Decade" belt (I'm not
commenting, merely shaking my head). Pacquiao must be waking up in a cold sweat
that he could never come to terms with Money Mayweather's camp and a Fight of
the Millennium bout that would have seen him rake in more dough than Domino's.
However, that's in his rearview mirror for now but the gild
is most definitely off that lily forever. Pacquiao needs to reestablish himself
not only as one of the best in the division but the best ever if he is to
continue to warrant these PPV events which provide these colossal paydays. Pacquiao
will be training in his native Philippines for this fight that is to take place
in Macau, China. It will be his first battle outside the United States since
2006 when he scored a unanimous decision over Oscar Larios to retain the WBC
International Super Featherweight title.
Some say the loss of strength and conditioning coach Alex
Ariza, allegedly fired by Freddie Roach, will be a notable advantage for the
challenger who has hired him to train for this fight. Perhaps Ariza can give
Rios both the edge physically and mentally over Pacquiao.
Shop for the best betting odds for the Pacquiao vs. Rios Fight.
Strange things happen to fighters when they get knocked
unconscious, particularly those of the world class variety who have survived
excessive punishment using a skilled blend of deception, feinting, uber
fast-twitch muscles and counterpunching. We can look back at the Baddest Man on
the Planet Mike Tyson and view his slow decline after Buster Douglas shocked
the world and proved Iron Mike could be broken. Tyson was never the same and as
Pacquiao advances towards middle age, the inevitable decline may have already taken
Pacquiao lost a brutal 12-round battle to Timothy Bradley (a
fight everyone but two of the three judges had Pac Man winning) and then
proceeded to get iced by his nemesis Juan Manuel Marquez in December of last
year. Pacquiao certainly has the chops to make life miserable for any fighter,
even one as talented as Brandon Rios who is almost seven years his junior.
It's not often I see a betting odds underdog that looks like
it's got as much bite as it does bark but that's exactly what I see here. Rios
is a brawler who will hurt Pac Man and from what I have seen recently, the
Mexicutioner doesn't take the heat like he used to.
I'll turn my lonely eyes to Bet365.com who will return to me
a hearty +400 on my money in my sports picks for what should be a thrilling
Saturday night in November.