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Juan Manuel Marquez likely to get next crack at slowing down Manny Pacquiao

Pacquiao retains WBO welterweight belt with easy win over aging Shane Mosley


Justin M. Bowen

Manny Pacquiao celebrates his unanimous decision win over Shane Mosely to keep the WBO World Welterweight Title at MGM Grand Garden Arena Saturday, May 7, 2011.

Main Event: Pacquiao vs. Mosley

Shane Mosley punches at Manny Pacquiao during their WBO welterweight title fight at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on May 7, 2011. Launch slideshow »

Undercard: Pacquiao vs. Mosley

Jorge Arce of Mexico celebrates his victory over  WBO super bantamweight champion Wilfredo Vazquez of Puerto Rico after their title fight at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on May 7, 2011. Launch slideshow »

Pacquiao vs. Mosley

KSNV coverage of the Manny Pacquiao-Shane Mosley title fight at the MGM Grand, May 7, 2011.

Boxing in Vegas

Sun Sports Editor Ray Brewer discusses the future of boxing in Las Vegas on KSNV, May 6, 2011.

Manny Pacquiao walked into his post-fight press conference late Saturday night sporting a sharp dark suit and yellow tie.

He looked refreshed.

Less than two hours removed from fighting 12 rounds against Shane Mosley in successful defense of his WBO welterweight title, Pacquiao hardly looked like he had just been in a boxing match.

There were no cuts or scratches on his face, and he didn’t need sunglasses to cover swollen eyes.

Beating Mosley was that easy.

Pacquiao (54-3-2) was hardly challenged in dominating from start to finish at the MGM Grand Garden Arena, recording a knock-down in the third round and continuing the pressure all night in a lopsided unanimous-decision victory. Judges scored the fight 119-108, 120-108, 120-107 — a true sign of the thorough beating Pacquiao put on his opponent.

“I fought the best fighter in the world,” Mosley said. “I have never fought someone with so much power.”

Mosley is right. Pacquiao has the remarkable ability to take his opponents’ out of their game plan.

With Pacquiao planning to retire at the end of 2013 to focus on his politician career and humanitarian projects in his native Philippines, it’s easy to wonder if the eight-division champ will again be challenged.

The answer all depends on Floyd Mayweather Jr., the lone fighter believed to have a chance to match Pacquiao's speed, strength and skills.

The undefeated Mayweather, however, hasn’t fought in a year and is battling legal troubles that present a significant roadblock in orchestrating what would be the fight of the century against Pacquiao.

Still, one of the first questions Pacquiao fielded after beating Mosley was about Mayweather.

“I’m satisfied with what I’ve accomplished in my career. I won’t lose a moment of sleep,” Pacquiao said about the possibility of missing a fight with Mayweather.

So, who is next? And more importantly for fans, will the fight be better than Saturday’s disaster?

The 39-year-old Mosley (46-7-1) was a shell of his former self, opting for a passive approach and eventually being booed out of the arena for essentially collecting a $6 million payday in what could be his last fight.

“I don’t think he tried to win the fight. I think he tried to survive. When you get to that point in boxing, it is time to call it a day,” said Freddie Roach, Pacquiao’s trainer.

A deal will be presented Monday for Juan Manuel Marquez to fight Pacquiao in early November at either the MGM or Thomas & Mack Center, said Bob Arum, president of Top Rank.

While Pacquiao proved Saturday he could take everyone out of their game, the veteran Marquez (52-5-1) has been the lone exception. They fought to a draw in 2004, and Pacquiao won a split decision in 2008 — two fights that could have easily been scored in favor of Marquez.

A fight with Marquez would be big business for Southern Nevada, generating revenue of $200 million to $300 million — similar to what the Mosley fight brought in.

“The governor talked with me today and how important it is to the state,” Arum said. “I really don’t see any reason to move it outside of Las Vegas.”

But Marquez is under contract until February with Golden Boy Promotions, meaning a deal to fight Pacquiao could potentially be held up if Golden Boy officials can match the fight offer, Arum said. That, however, appears unlikely.

Whoever fights Pacquiao will need to do a better job of trading punches with the undisputed pound-for-pound king. Mosley, a powerful puncher who was expected to be aggressive, only landed 82 punches — none of which hurt Pacquiao. On the other hand, Pacquiao landed 33 percent of his 552 punches.

Before Saturday night, Mosley had only been floored once in his lengthy career. He called the punch that Pacquiao knocked him off his feet with one of the strongest he’s encountered.

“Manny’s power is a little different,” Mosley said.

Pacquiao, who hasn’t lost since 2005 and has won his last 14 fights, continued to be a star outside the ring, too. Socialites Paris and Nicky Hilton attended the post-fight conference, and Pacquiao (who released a CD single last month) played a concert at Mandalay Bay Beach later in the night.

Yes, nobody can slow down Manny Pacquiao — especially in the ring.

“When you analyze everything that is out there, it is very, very difficult to get someone who can compete with him,” Arum said.

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