Posts Tagged ‘Freddie Roach’

Original Source:

Battle of Trainers: The Story of Manny Pacquiao and Juan Manuel Marquez

Kirk Jackson December 8, 2012

LAS VEGAS, NV - DECEMBER 07:  Boxers Manny Pacquiao (L) and Juan Manuel Marquez face off as Top Rank promoter Bob Arum holds the championship belt during the official weigh-in for their welterweight bout at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on December 7, 2012 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Pacquiao and Marquez will fight each other for the fourth time on Dec. 8 in Las Vegas.  (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Getty Images)

Jeff Bottari/Getty Images

It’s only fitting the future first ballot Hall of Fame fighters, Manny Pacquiao and Juan Manuel Marquez, are trained by two Hall of Fame trainers.

The trainer of Pacquiao, Freddie Roach, was voted “Trainer of the Year” five times by the Boxing Writer’s Association of America.

The trainer of Marquez, Ignacio Beristain, is a member of the boxing Hall of Fame and considered by many as one of the greatest trainers of all time.

Roach’s claim to world-wide fame is his most prized pupil, Pacquiao.

Roach has worked with other prominent fighters spanning across various sports, including the likes of James Toney, Mike Tyson, Georges St. Pierre, Amir Khan, Oscar De La Hoya, Bernard Hopkins, Andrei Arlovski, Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. and many others.

Berstain’s claim to international recognition may have stemmed from his work with Hall of Fame fighter Ricardo Lopez. Beristain led Mexico’s Olympic Boxing Team to medals in 1968, 1976 and 1980.

Beristain has also worked with the likes of Humberto Gonzalez, Daniel Zaragoza, Abner Mares, Jorge Arce, Oscar De La Hoya, Jorge Paez and Rafael Marquez, the brother of Juan.

Aside from being a trainer to their fighters, Roach and Beristain also serve as family-like figures and match-makers to Pacquiao and Marquez, respectively.

Beristain has certainly had a hand in fighting arrangements in the past for Marquez, including in 2006, when he helped secure a fight against WBA Featherweight Champion Chris John in his home country of Indonesia.

The fight didn’t pan out too well for Marquez, as he suffered a controversial unanimous decision defeat and missed out on a more financially rewarding rematch with Pacquiao.

Roach and Pacquiao have had better success in that regard.

Roach helped Pacquiao pick out opponents such as De La Hoya, Miguel Cotto, Shane Mosley, all while they were on the downslides of their physical peaks.

Roach is also a catch-weight enthusiast and did whatever it took to give his fighter any advantage heading into a fight. It may seem wrong in the eyes of some, but he is looking out for the best interest of his fighter.

The mark of a great trainer or coach, is finding ways to motivate your player/fighter and making adjustments round by round and in this case, fight by fight as well.

Over the period of time Roach has been training Pacquiao, there have been some signs of improvement.

Pacquiao’s right hand has developed into a more potent weapon in general, although not always consistent against his rival Marquez, and Pacquiao as he has gotten older, seems more methodical in his attack.

Some may argue Pacquiao’s tamed aggression goes against his strengths as a fighter, while some say he is at his best when he is unpredictable, in which his unpredictable-ness overwhelmed Marquez initially in the first encounter .

As the series has progressed, it seems Marquez has made the more significant adjustments.

For example, his head movement and upper body movement has improved. Marquez ducks his head more to evade punches, lessened his wild-flurry exchanges with Pacquiao as the series has progressed, and he has boxed more effectively down the stretch in their fights.

Marquez went from getting knocked down three times in the first fight, to one knock down in the second fight and not being knocked down or even staggered in the third fight.

That is a credit to his trainer Beristain—a man he has known since his teenage years, and their personal bond and mentor/student chemistry in evident.

Prior to the third fight in 2011 between Marquez and Pacquiao, Roach mentioned Pacquiao’s improvement with his right hand to “The Ring”.

“That right hand of Manny’s has improved since their first two fights,” said Roach. “I told Manny I won’t be satisfied until his right hand is as good as his left hand. Now it is at this point.”

I haven’t seen this “improved right hand” Roach talked about. Aside from his right jab that he uses to measure his opponent, not much comes from the right hand of Pacquiao.

There were also talks of Pacquiao’s improved foot work and balance from Roach.

“He does throw a wild shot here and there, but he’s improved immensely with the footwork,” said Roach. “His balance has gotten a lot better.”

As great as he is, Pacquiao still attacks off balance and gets countered just as badly as he did in all of his previous fights against Marquez.

If anything, Marquez is the one who has made the adjustments, which is even more impressive if you consider his advanced age and athletic disadvantage against Pacquiao.

Roach as held the edge over Beristain in recent years in the win/loss column between their respective fighters, with Roach scoring victories over Marquez and Oscar De La Hoya under Beristain’s tutelage.

This has been a bad year so far for Roach, with his big-name fighters taking losses. Chavez suffered a defeat to the reigning middleweight champion, Sergio Martinez, Khan suffered a knock-out loss to rising star Danny Garcia, and Pacquiao lost a controversial split decision victory to Timothy Bradley.

I’m sure Roach and Pacquiao want to get a win to finish the year out. I’m also certain they want to score a knock out against Marquez to solidify their dominance in this historic rivalry.

The problem for them is, Beristain and Marquez want to do the same. Marquez feels he won all three fights and wants to put a stamp on his legacy by winning their fourth fight in dominant fashion.

Many questions entering this fourth fight still remain.

After studying the three previous fights, can Roach and Pacquiao come out with a strategy that will ensure a dominant victory over Marquez? Can they find away to make Pacquiao’s right hand the difference maker in the fight?

Will the distraction outside the ring—politics, endorsement deals, new-found religion—get the best of Pacquiao? Does he still have the focus and motivation to want to prove he’s the best fighter in the world without a doubt?


Original Source:

Mike Tyson with a potential blueprint to beat Floyd Mayweather?

floyd663By Kirk Jackson: Recently, Hall of Fame boxer Mike Tyson was interviewed by The Wall Street Journal and gave his opinion on the huge fight taking place May 2nd at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada.

On the set of ESPN’s “First Take” journalists Stephen A. Smith and Skip Bayless offer their insight on Tyson’s remarks in regards to the upcoming fight between Floyd Mayweather 47-0 (26 KO’s) and Manny Pacquiao 57-5-2 (38 KO’s).

More importantly with what Tyson said, he indicated this will be Mayweather’s toughest fight to date and there is a great possibility of Mayweather getting busted up and losing. Tyson offered great perspective on what Pacquiao should do to secure a victory May 2nd.

“You need to put constant pressure on Floyd, be in front of him all the time by moving side to side and punching from angles,” said Tyson.

“Manny is going to feint Floyd out of position a lot and make him throw more punches than he is used to and that will open Floyd up. He [Mayweather] has never been tested, whatever happens in the fight, I think he’s going to get hit and hurt more than he has ever before; we’re going to see how tough he is.”

Many things to take away from this Mike Tyson quote.

Although this is not a full comprehensive game plan, this is a good foundation on how to attack Mayweather and Pacquiao has the athletic gifts to certainly pull off this game plan. Pacquiao has a herky-jerky style and could very well feint Mayweather out of position, where he can capitalize because of his great foot and hand speed. This is one of the advantages and tactics Pacquiao utilizes over most opponents.

A danger exists, if the fighter kennedy execute this style of fighting efficiently. Moving side to side, while dodging attacks can be physically and mentally taxing, especially if the fighter [Pacquiao] is missing punches are occasionally eating counter punches for his troubles.

The thing is, aside from what Tyson mentioned as keys for success against Mayweather, in order to have just a modicum of success against Mayweather, it can be argued the opponent must possess a solid jab, ala Miguel Cotto, Marcos Maidana, Oscar De La Hoya, Jose Luis Castillo (first fight).

A trait all the fighters mentioned have in common with (De La Hoya) being the exception, is they’re really good pressure / inside fighters. Another thing is all of those fighters mentioned are naturally bigger / stronger than Mayweather.

Pacquiao is the smallest opponent Mayweather has faced since Juan Manuel Marquez back in 2009, the size advantage for Pacquiao will not be there. Pacquiao is not a pressure fighter by nature and rarely fights on the inside, he is more a mid-range fighter.

He uses his speech to advantage, move in and attacks, dashes back or to the side, usually towards his right, away from danger. With all the Pacquiao has in his arsenal, the jab is not necessarily one of his best punches.

Tyson and others are mistakenly labeling Pacquiao as an all out pressure fighter, when that’s not really his game. Tyson maybe implying that he has to fight ferociously like he did in his prime, but in reality, they’re two different styles of fighter.

Many claim Pacquiao lost his “Killer Instinct” over the last couple of years, I think he just he evolved and maximized his strengths as a fighter.

As Chris Algieri 20-1 (8 KO’s) post fight after his defeat against Pacquiao this past November was quoted as saying, “Manny is great at being Manny.”

Fighting Marquez four times probably provided Pacquiao with the realization that he can’t rush in giving caution to the wind against certain fighters, which contributes to Manny’s evolution as a fighter.

Pacquiao may have to continue with the next phase of evolution and change his temperament, in order to apply the Tyson game plan and a defeat Mayweather. He is going to have to learn to cut off the ring, he will have to suddenly develop or at least be effective in using the jab as well.

Maybe Tyson is alluding to the strategy Pacquiao and trainer Freddie Roach plan to implore May 2nd.

The last and take away from Mike Tyson’s analysis of the fight is the question of Mayweather’s toughness or lack thereof.

It seems as though Mike Tyson doesn’t care for the Mayweather, at least not in this fight. Freddie Roach trained Tyson toward the end of his career and Roach is the current trainer of Pacquiao. Tyson on a number of occasions expressed his displeasure of Mayweather and said he would have liked to have fought Mayweather and expressed pleasure and beating him up.

That’s fine and all, I would expect for him to remain loyal to his former trainer and gravitate towards Pacquiao because he is a fellow action fighter.

For him to question the toughness of a guy who has been a champion for over 17 years, defeated 22 former or current world champions, fought in 24 championship fights across five weight classes says a lot. Mayweather was visibly stunned against DeMarcus Corley, Shane Mosley, Zab Judah, bounced back and dominated all of them.

Seems like a ridiculous statement and adds to the notion of people will not be satisfied until they see Floyd Mayweather lose. Loyalty the side, guess we’ll see what happens May 2nd.