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Manny Pacquiao vs. Brandon Rios: Freddie Roach vs. Robert Garcia

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Manny Pacquiao will take on Brandon Rios this Saturday, November 23rd in Macau, China in what appears to be a very interesting match-up. The sport of boxing is truly a Sweet Science as it requires a combination of skill and strategy to successfully compete.

One cannot merely go into a boxing match loosely flailing punches and expect a favorable outcome.

Strategies are carefully orchestrated by trainers who assess the strengths and weaknesses of his/her fighter and their pupil's opponent.

All fighters have strengths and limitations, so formulating a strategy that compliments one fighter's assets and exposes his opponent's vulnerabilities is critical; trainers who do this best usually have the most success.

Saturday's match-up features two elite trainers who both been awarded boxing's Trainer of the Year honors. Like head coaches in team sports, Freddie Roach and Robert Garcia will attempt to outsmart each other by having their fighters successfully execute the strategy they've prepared.

Official Pacquiao vs Rios fight poster


Freddie Roach has made no secret about what his fighter's strategy will be come Saturday.

"You outbox him [Brandon Rios]. You don't trade with this guy. You just weave in and out and the fight will be easy."

Although Freddie's strategy is to have Manny to stick-and-move and ultimately outbox Rios, Freddie's plan calls on Manny to knockout his foe if the opportunity is presented.

"Manny's last training session was nothing short of amazing. We were supposed to do six rounds on the mitts and I cut it off after four rounds." They were the best four rounds of mitts I have ever done with Manny. He was blazing. He was throwing the heat."


"I know I predicted that Manny would knock Rios out inside six rounds but based on our last workout, I don't see how Rios makes it past the fourth round."

But Robert Garcia, trainer of Brandon Rios, believes he has the perfect plan to defeat PacMan.

"My dad [Eduardo Garcia] and I have put together a great game plan for Rios and we have been watching the Pacquiao tapes together, said the junior Garcia."

"Everybody knows how Brandon fights and nothing is going to change Brandon. That's what we are going to do."

"We are going to try to make it into a brawl. That's the only way Brandon fights and that's the only way Brandon knows how to fight so there is nothing else we can do. That's what we have to do."

And Garcia, much like Roach, has offered a prediction of his own.

"Twice during the two episodes of HBO's 24/7: Pacquiao vs Rios, I've heard Freddie Roach say he will ask Manny Pacquiao to retire if he loses to Brandon Rios." Well, Freddie had better buy that gold watch for Manny, because the retirement party begins on Saturday night."

275px-Roberto Garcia
"I guarantee you this will be the last time you ever see Manny Pacquiao on an HBO Pay-Per-View."

The match-up between trainers is getting more intense as time nears. While the outcome of Pacquiao vs Rios is in doubt, the overall strategies seemingly are not.
Roach intends to expose the weaknesses of Rios by having Pacquiao box him while Garcia plans to take his fighter's strengths by turning the fight into a brawl.

Has Roach developed a strategy to expose Rios' weaknesses – Or will Garcia's gameplan enable Rios to take advantage of the latter's strength by forcing Manny to fight in the trenches?


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