It started with a big name tossed casually in the air during a podcast interview. Manny Pacquiao’s long-time trainer Freddie Roach was on the Chris Mannix boxing podcast, talking about his fighter’s immediate future.
“One thing about Manny, he doesn’t wanna beat just anybody, he wants to fight the top guys,” Roach said. “Like, Mikey Garcia called him out a couple times. I think that’s a good fight for him, of course. Robert (Garcia, Mikey’s trainer and brother) called him out on one of your shows. It made me smile because I like that fight for Manny. I think it’s a great fight.
“But the thing is, Manny might wanna go a little bit higher and fight GGG or one of those guys who’s supposed to be the best guy in the world today, because Pacquiao still desires to be the best there is.”
Gennadiy Golovkin. Two-time middleweight champ and feared power puncher.
That’s all it took for the boxing media to pounce. Immediately, articles were being written and social media was being flooded. Manny MIGHT fight Golovkin. Manny COULD fight Golovkin.
Of course, few opted to shine a spotlight on Roach’s next words where he definitively said that he would advise AGAINST Manny fighting Golovkin. But such is the state of media in this day and age. Gotta grab the sizzle even if there’s no steak to it.
Anyway, it didn’t take long for other fighters and active members of the fight business to seize on the media buzz storm.
Mikey Chimes In
“He’s already fought at 154 or right at 154,” Mikey Garcia opined via FightHype.com. “So if he wants to fight some of the bigger guys and make them come down to 156 or 154, he might be able to pull it off.
“He’s done it all, so why not? I wouldn’t be surprised. F it. Do it,” Mikey added when asked if Pacquiao could move up to 160 to fight. “Go for it. He’s already a legend as it is…He’ll only be greater if he accomplishes something like that. That would undeniably be one of the biggest achievements in boxing.”
Pacquiao’s former promoter, Bob Arum, would then chime in.
“I know Golovkin appears to be over the hill, but it’s a fight that could be very dangerous for Pacquiao,” Arum told the UK’s Daily Mail. “He isn’t even a welterweight really let alone a middleweight. His best fighting weight is 140, at 147 I think he’s pretty much outsized by all the good welterweights.”
Okay. Now, it’s time to interject some reality and common sense into the nonsense.
Manny Pacquiao will only be fighting Gennadiy Golovkin in the fevered nightmares of hardcore Pacquiao fans and Team Pacquiao members. Golovkin, at 38, is not moving down to 154 or 156. Pacquiao, at 41, is not moving up to 160. Period. It ain’t happening.
Both fighters, who have benefitted from smart matchmaking and careful cultivation of a “destroy all comers” image will not be throwing all that away with massive risk of embarrassment now– especially in the last stages of their careers. Again, Pacquiao-Golovkin ain’t happening. Ever.
The Lesson to be Learned
But there is a lesson to be learned from all of this mad rush to post the slightest hint of a possible Manny Pacquiao rumor.
Manny’s name still sells and is still among the very most marketable, bankable names in the business. He remains one of the sport’s few true superstars. And, because of that, everyone is hanging on his every movement when it comes to a post-Covid comeback.