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Mayweather vs Pacquiao 2 prediction: Why PacMan wins rematch

Lee Cleveland Updated
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The announcement to confirm the rematch between Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao is seemingly upon us.

Who would have thought it would ever happen?

Most of us were dissecting next fight options for Manny and - 'Boom'- out of nowhere Floyd announces on social media that Mayweather vs Pacquiao 2 was nearly a done deal.

Who knows why Floyd wants this fight?

Does he miss the limelight THAT much? Is he ALREADY in need of money?

Certainly, he must realize the rematch won't gross nearly as much money as the first fight. Mayweather vs Pacquiao generated a purported 4.4 to 4.5 million buys and Floyd earned upwards of $200 million plus while Manny pocketed a cool $100-150 million.

Is Floyd angling for a rematch with middleweight champion Canelo Alvarez? Or, perhaps, it's personal with Manny? Maybe Floyd thinks he didn't do enough in the first fight? After all, Mayweather vs Pacquiao wasn't eaxctly Canelo vs Golovkin 2 in terms of entertainment value. Although expectations were too high, the fight itself was a B-/C+ on a grading scale.

In that May 2015 showdown, Floyd, showcasing a high ring IQ and great skills and speed, won a unanimous decision by the scores of 116-112, 116-112 and 118-110. Finally, the six year debate was settled... sort of.

Mayweather won on the scorecards and there's no arguing the decision but he didn't beat Manny Pacquiao that night. He outpointed Pacquiao and did what he had to in order to win, but didn't beat him.

... But that's not the only reason why I predict Manny will win the rematch.

Mayweather vs Pacquiao 2 prediction

1. Activity rate
Yes, Floyd is easily one of the greatest fighters of all-time but Manny, also an all-time great, can - and will - exact revenge if he's well-prepared.

Floyd hasn't faced a real and legitimate opponent since his September 2015 win over Andre Berto. And the last elite-level opponent he's faced was Pac. Manny, on the otherhand, sizzled in 2016 against Timothy Bradley and Jessie Vargas, and looked like the Pacquiao of old in dispatching knockout artist Lucas Matthysse last summer. And while he lost to previously unbeaten Jeff Horn in a messy fight last year, the verdict was far from resolute.

Since their May 2015 bout, Manny has looked dynamite in 3 of 4 bouts while Floyd looked decent against Berto and, two years later, engaged in a farcical fight against an amateur.


April 2016 - UD 12 Tim Bradley (then 31-1-1)

  • Tim was still considered a top 10 pound-for-pound fighter at the time
  • Pacquiao scored knockdowns of Bradley in the seventh and ninth rounds for two 10-8 rounds, clinching the one-sided fight.
  • All three judges rendered a 116-110 score
  • Pacquiao outworked Bradley overall with punches thrown and scored, throwing 137 more punches over the 12 round contest.

November 2016 - UD 12 Jessie Vargas (then 27-1)

  • Vargas down once in Round 2.
  • Scores were 118-109, 118-109 and 114-113
  • Another excellent performance over a highly-ranked opponent

July 2017 - (Loss) UD 12 Jeff Horn (then 16-0-1)

  • Many pundits, current and former boxers, believed Pacquiao had done enough to retain the WBO title. 
  • Manny looked lethargic and ill-prepared; His corner was a mess in between rounds
  • Pacquiao nearly ended the fight in Round 9; Horn was told by referee Mark Nelson that he would need to show competitiveness in order to continue.
  • Scores were 113-115 twice and 111-117

July 2018 - TKO 4 Lucas Matthysse (then 39-4)

  • Manny won WBA 'Regular' World welterweight title
  • Matthysse entered that fight 5-1, 4 KO in his previous six bouts. Not exactly chopped liver.
  • Lucas was down 3 times
  • Pacquiao was on the balls of his feet, moving his head well and striking like a cobra a la the Ricky Hatton bout in 2009.
  • Manny's first fight in years without Freddie Roach in training camp or his corner.


Floyd realizes he'll need a tune-up prior to the Pacquiao rematch but I'm not sure just one would be enough. He turns 42 in August and has been relatively inactive for 3 years. Manny turns 40 in December but has been realtively active and impressive (sans Jeff Horn) - and against against better opposition.

2. Revenge Factor / Hunger
We know, or can at least assume, PacMan would face Floyd for far less money than he received in their first bout so cash is no object with PacMan. He's wanted revenge ever since the verdict was announced in the waning moments after their May 2015 bout. Manny insisted he entered May's affair severely compromised after aggravating an already-torn right rotator cuff in training three weeks prior to the bout.

He believes the fight was stolen from him and wants nothing more than to fight Floyd again. (I'll elaborate on the injury in No. 3)

Who cares if he's 40 and wealthy? Manny Pacquiao will be hungrier and more motivated than Floyd, who has been spending a lot of time in strip clubs, in their rematch. He looked motivated enough against Matthysee. Now, imagine the fire he'll bring when he faces Floyd again.

What about the Horn fight?

The Horn bout was a great learning experience for Manny. At 39, he realizes that he can't rely so much on his physical gifts and experience to sail to victory. He must be supremely focused, well-conditioned and have a well-conceived, well-rehearsed gameplan as well as a back-up plan in order to excel against a quality opponent.

If you expect to see the version of Pacquiao that faced Horn show up to fight Mayweather in the rematch, DON'T.

3. The Injury
Let's not forget that a small minority thoughg Pacquiao deserved the nod against Floyd. And that was the same PacMan who fought with a torn right rotator cuff. 

But boxers fight with injuries all the time, right?

Yes, but this was different. Team Pacquiao assumed their man would be able to take injections of lidocaine, celestone and bupivacaine an hour or so before the fight. But on the night of the fight, Nevada Athletic Commission refused to allow Manny Pacquiao's team to inject "legal" numbing agents in his injured shoulder so Pacquiao was forced to fight while in great pain.

The above agents, which are approved by the United States Anti-Doping Agency, would have numbed the pain for about six hours.

Keyword = Legal

"The problem is we were sabotaged," Manny told reporters after the fight.

Question: So, why couldn't Team Pacquiao postpone the fight?

For starters, no one wants to be the one who postpones the biggest fight in history. Secondly, it was presumed (perhaps even promised) that Nevada would allow Pacquiao to take injections an hour or so before the fight.

"My rate of my performance was only at 60%. 60% because my mind wanted to do it, but it was outbalanced because I was only relying on my left," Manny uttered.

With that in mind, let's not forget two of the three judges still scored it 116-112 (competitive).

"I’m so disappointed in the commission because I believe they know but only they said we didn’t fill out the form," said Pacquiao in the post-fight presser.

Freddie Roach, what happenend here? That was your job. (We'll address that in another article)

"I needed that shot," Pacquiao added.

“I really needed that shot because if I throw a power hook or power jab, it hurt.”

Should they rematch each other, Floyd would be facing a better version of Pacquiao because of the rehabilitated shoulder, alone. Couple that with Manny's activity rate vs Floyd's inactivity, the fact Pacquiao has been impressive in 3 of his 4 fights since the Mayweather bout and post-surgery, and the hunger/revenge/motivation edge Pacquiao will have during training and in the fight, and it's not difficult to see Manny winning the rematch.

Mayweather vs Pacquiao 2 prediction:
Manny TKO 9 Floyd
.... And it'll be better than the first fight.

Please share your Mayweather vs Pacquiao 2 rematch prediction.


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