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Thoughts on Manny Pacquiao vs. Jessie Vargas

Over the weekend I spent the course of a few days in Las Vegas, Nevada to watch the fight between Manny Pacquiao versus Jessie Vargas which took place at the Thomas and Mack Center in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Below are my general thoughts that I usually put in the form of a podcast, but due to a heightened work schedule essentially weird hours to be awake this week I am going to write about it instead.

Pacquiao is still good!

The trendy pick amongst many was to say Vargas would beat Manny Pacquiao on Saturday as Vargas had the focus and poise to withstand what some saw as a distracted and aging Pacquiao. Instead it was a similar Pacquiao to that of old as he outgunned a typically tricky Jessie Vargas by doing what he does, jumping in and then out before Vargas could time him.

A few things that I noted are as follows

  1. In the later rounds Manny Pacquiao would look at Floyd Mayweather after landing punches on Jessie Vargas and smile. Pacquiao was said to have invited Mayweather to the fight.
  2. Jessie Vargas’ feints held Pacquiao off enough for him to not just walk through him. For the first four rounds, Vargas did well lining Pacquiao up for the right hand by using deception with his left paw to try and set-up the overhand right.
  3. This is what happens when a really good fighter fights a legend. Jessie Vargas is one of the best of his generation, but Pacquiao is one of the best, ever. This fight simply showed that the graduation to being in the realm of the elite in this sport is hard and only a few can.



You could make a case for either guy winning Nonito Donaire versus Jessie Magdaleno, but the fact that one judge saw the fight 118-110 simply made those watching the fight wonder, did the judge just not watch the fight. It is flat-out awful when bad scorecards mare a great fight, but that will be my last memory. In a fight that lived up to the hype and was closely contested, that at the most had a one point margin of victory for either fighter seemed a tad bit shocking that one person could see it so wide.

My big takeaway was what I had said in jest prior though, somewhat knew to be truth that both Donaire and Magdaleno put too much pressure on themselves in this fight looking for the KO and what we saw instead was a tense fight full of counter-punching.

I had the fight a legit draw with Magdaleno winning the last round to make a comeback on the cards.

After the fight, I don’t know where Donaire goes as it was one of his better outings in recent memory, but the result was unsatisfactory as opposed to Magdaleno who switched to Manny Robles won his first world title of his young career.

Up until the end of the fight, it felt as though Jessie Magdaleno could suffer the same fate as his brother Diego Magdaleno, who nearly lost a close decision to Roman “Rocky” Martinez overseas.


Valdez is that good

You can say whatever you want about Oscar Valdez’s opponent, Hiroshige Osawa, not being known to the casual or even hardcore boxing fan, but regardless, the guy was tough and Valdez did what needed to be done.

In a fight that could of easily turned into a trap fight, Valdez withstood some hard punches and the durability of Osawa, to stop him late in the fight. What impressed me the most was after a quick stoppage in his last outing, Valdez never got flustered and waited for his moment before getting his desired result.

Zou Shiming (8-1, 2 KOs) vs. Prasitak Phaprom (39-1-2, 24 KOs)
Vacant WBO flyweight world championship

Zou Shiming did his best Roy Jones Jr. impersonation as he mimicked the hall of famer in a truly scary fight. Shiming, the Chinese gold medalist is now a world champion, who took time after the fight to call out Roman Gonzalez, fought well at times, but what was scared me was his inability to hurt Phaprom and the accumulation of damage Phaprom took.

Fights like this one are the one’s people get really damaged from when they take so many unanswered shots. Shiming had enough skill to land at will, but not enough to turn the lights out.


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Lukie Ketelle

Lukie Ketelle