Boxing

Manny Pacquiao vs. Juan Manuel Marquez Was Just What Boxing Needed

LAS VEGAS, NV - NOVEMBER 12:  Juan Manuel Marquez reacts in the ring as he takes on Manny Pacquiao during the WBO world welterweight title fight at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on November 12, 2011 in Las Vegas, Nevada.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
Harry How/Getty Images
Dave CarlsonCorrespondent INovember 13, 2011

There is controversy about Manny Pacquiao's tightly contested win over Juan Manuel Marquez tonight.

Good.

That's what the sport needs. We don't need another blowout victory. We don't need another sham superfight with a one-sided scorecard. We don't need another disqualification or another bit of frustration.

We got an excellent fight tonight. Sure, the Bradley-Casamayor bout was the blowout everyone was expecting, but for once the main event didn't disappoint.

It wasn't Bernard Hopkins vs. Chad Dawson.

It wasn't Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Victor Ortiz.

It wasn't Manny Pacquiao vs. Shane Mosley, or Antonio Margarito, or Joshua Clottey, or Ricky Hatton or Oscar De La Hoya.

It was quality boxing between two of the greatest practitioners in the sport today.

Juan Manuel Marquez—38 years old and in an unfamiliar weight division—fought his heart out and deserved every round that any of the scorers deserved.

Manny Pacquiao—whose performance wasn't as dominant as expected—showed that he still has the resiliency and willpower to overcome the kind of adversity Juan Manuel Marquez threw at him tonight.

Marquez put forth one of the finest counter-punching performances I have ever witnessed. Ever. In over 1,000 fights that I have seen, I'm not sure if I've seen someone since Pernell Whitaker counter-punch the way Marquez was last night against the world's best fighter.

So let the debate continue, and let the embraces finally begin.

Boxing is back, and what a night it was!

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