Manny Pacquiao and the 25 Greatest Southpaws in Boxing History

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Manny Pacquiao and the 25 Greatest Southpaws in Boxing History
Jeff Bottari/Getty Images

In the first Rocky film, there is a scene where Apollo Creed and his promoter are scrambling to find a replacement opponent for their big event in Philadelphia. Finally, Apollo finds what he thinks is the perfect choice: Rocky Balboa, "the Italian Stallion," native son of the City of Brotherly Love.

Only Duke Evers, the champ's trainer, registers concern: "He's a southpaw. I don't want to mess with no southpaw."

It's one of the oldest truisms in the fight game: a left-handed opponent, because he does everything backwards, inserts an additional element of unpredictability. Even a heavily-favored orthodox fighter runs the risk of bumping into an unintentional head butt. 

The Latin word for left was "sinistra," which also meant "unlucky." It's the root word for the modern English word "sinister." 

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