Promoters had likely started scheming long before fight night about whom Pacquiao would fight after beating Marquez and where the 39-year-old Mexican would go after losing to Pacquaio again. But that did not happen, and now plans need to be completely reworked.
Some of those making changes to their plans will do so as winners of this upset, and others will be forced into disappointing situations because of the result.
Here are those who benefitted and those who suffered from the result.
Juan Manuel Marquez
Marquez is both a literal and figurative winner in this fight. While his win total only increased by one, this was the biggest victory of his career.
He finally earned his win over Pacquiao, and the result was as poetic as a punch directly to the face can possibly be. Marquez’ ability to counterpunch has defined him as a fighter, and his series with Pacquiao has defined his career; it is fitting that the result he has chased since 2008 came with his best counterpunch yet.
This result will secure him a spot in another marquee fight, and his legacy will greatly benefit from his performance in Las Vegas on Saturday night. Marquez is clearly the biggest winner in this situation.
Facing huge expectations, an undercard full of disappointing fights and whatever 50 Cent did, Pacquiao and Marquez were given the unenviable task of saving the night.
Against all odds, they delivered in a big way. Leading up the knockout, the two fighters were not shy about trading blows and showed little hesitation.
With two knockdowns in the first five rounds and Marquez’ incredible knockout in Round 6, there was no shortage of action in this bout. It was an entertaining and dramatic fight, and the fans certainly got all they could have hoped for from this bout.
Pacquiao now has to re-evaluate his path forward. A fight with Floyd Mayweather Jr. is likely off the table, and there are significantly more questions than answers regarding Pac-Man’s career.
While a rematch with Marquez will surely be discussed, anything but a fight with Mayweather will ultimately be disappointing. This superfight is what boxing fans have been hoping for since Pacquiao rose to stardom.
But that appears as if it will have to wait after Pacquiao’s second consecutive defeat. The Filipino fighter’s next bout will have serious implications for his career and his legacy.
Floyd Mayweather Jr.
While Pacquiao will be extremely disappointed over failing to set the stage for a Mayweather fight, Money May has just as much to lose over this shocking result.
Mayweather is undefeated as a professional, but his legacy will not be complete until he fights Pacquiao. The Filipino star is the only fighter whose talent is even remotely comparable to Mayweather's.
If he doesn’t fight Pacquiao, Mayweather will always face criticism for failing to set up a bout. Whether or not he cares to admit it, Mayweather would benefit from a string of Pacquiao wins and a future superfight.
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