Manny Pacquiao rolled back the years in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, on Saturday to stop Lucas Matthysse in the seventh round and clinch the WBA (regular) welterweight title at 39.
The referee called the TKO win for Pac-Man after a jilting uppercut sent Matthysse to the canvas for a third time, earning Pacquiao some redemption for his shock defeat to Jeff Horn in Brisbane, Australia, last year.
Pacquiao claimed the belt with the 60th win of his professional career (60-7-2), and even he was surprised by how easily the Argentinian fell, per BBC Sport: "I'm surprised I knocked him down so early. It was a long time ago since I've done that. I came out smoking hot."
It was a fair assessment after the veteran blitzed his opponent into submission, and ESPN provided highlights of a one-sided victory for the Filipino legend:
Pacquiao adviser Mike Koncz said his client would "definitely" net more than he made in his past three fights, against Timothy Bradley ($20 million), Jessie Vargas ($4 million) and Jeff Horn ($10 million), per Abac Cordero of the Philippine Star, .
Josh Katzowitz of Forbes reported Matthysse would take home a guaranteed purse of $2.5 million, a terrific consolation considering he bagged a reported $410,000 combined from his past two fights, both victories.
Matthysse looked a shade of himself for most of the fight, and CompuBox highlighted how dominant Pacquiao was en route to his first stoppage win since 2009:
He showed an especially vicious streak as he sought his first win since 2016, per ESPN Stats & Info:
Former assistant coach to Pacquiao, Buboy Fernandez, took over his preparations in place of Freddie Roach for this camp, and the benefits appeared clear at the Axiata Arena.
Despite his age, Pacquaio produced one of his more energetic performances in recent times, particularly after the surprise defeat to Horn at the Battle of Brisbane, and he celebrated getting back to winning ways:
Having scored such a comfortable win after a year out of action, it's perhaps not surprising Pacquiao showed an inclination towards fighting again in 2018, according to Los Angeles Times reporter Lance Pugmire.
There's little telling what the immediate future holds for Pacquiao, who may consider a return to a new lucky venue in Malaysia, where he turned back the clock to rack up a confident TKO victory over Matthysse.