Manny Pacquiao’s trainer, Freddie Roach, apparently believes his fighter’s pre-bout marital problems factored into his performance during a disputed majority decision victory over Juan Manuel Marquez in November.
According to a report by Yahoo!Sports, the refusal of Pacquiao’s wife, Jinkee, to join her husband in the arena delayed his arrival to the locker room on fight night, resulting in a shorter warmup time. Also, contentious telephone conversations between the couple led to irregular sleep patterns for Pacquiao during training camp, a time during which Jinkee Pacquiao was considering divorce.
“When he came into the dressing room, he wasn’t smiling and he wasn’t the old Manny Pacquiao I’m used to. He was [very late arriving] and he didn’t have the kind of focus you normally get from him,” Roach told Yahoo!Sports.
“Obviously, he was going through a pretty serious situation in his personal life and his wife was threatening to divorce him, so that’s tough for anyone to handle. I wasn’t thrilled with the performance, but I’m not that critical of it given everything that was happening.”
When Pacquiao wanted to renew his wedding vows the day after facing Marquez at a ceremony that had been pre-arranged by Lovee Arum, the wife of Top Rank Promotions CEO Bob Arum, Jinkee Pacquiao would not attend.
But Pacquiao (54-3-2, 38 knockouts) says those problems are behind him heading into the June 9 defense of his belt against unbeaten WBO junior welterweight titleholder Tim Bradley (28-0, 12 KOs).
Pacquiao, who will turns 34 in December, credits faith-based lifestyle changes among the reasons that he no longer gambles and womanizes and that he will be more capable of focusing beyond potential distractions that may also stem from his legal problems.
TRU TV TO BROADCAST HBO’S “24/7: PACQUIAO/BRADLEY
The network truTV will air a marathon replay of all four installments of the HBO’s “24/7: Pacquiao/Bradley.”
TruTV is is currently seen in 92 million U.S. households and features such popular original series as Hardcore Pawn and World’s Dumbest. In addition, truTV is a partner in airing the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship.
PRE-FIGHT WEIGH-IN SHOW TO AIR LIVE ON FRIDAY ON HBO
The Pacquiao-Bradley weigh-in will air live for 30 minutes on Friday starting at 6 p.m. ET/PT on HBO, and be hosted by Jim Lampley with commentators Max Kellerman and Emanuel Steward from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.
ROACH, THOMAS HEARNS, MICHAEL BUFFER HEAD INTERNATIONAL BOXING HALL OF FAME INDUCTEES
Roach, former titleholders Mark “Too Sharp” Johnson and Thomas “The Hit-Man” Hearns, ring announcer Michael Buffer, Broadcaster Al Bernstein and writer Michael Katz will be inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame’s class of 2012 during a June 10 ceremony on the Hall of Fame Museum Grounds in Canastota, N.Y., at 2:30 p.m.
“We are eagerly anticipating paying tribute to the incredible accomplishments of the members of the Class of 2012,” said Edward Brophy, Hall of Fame Executive Director.
“We look forward to welcoming them to Canastota to take their place in the Hall of Fame. It is so exciting to think that they will be boarding airplanes in a few short days and making the trek to Canastota to receive boxing’s highest honor.”
Each inductee will receive a Hall of Fame Induction Certificate and gold Hall of Fame Ring. In addition, a plaque with his biography and photo will be on permanent display on the Hall of Fame Wall.
GUERRERO PREPARES FOR WELTERWEIGHT DEBUT
Former two-time featherweight titleholder Robert Guerrero (29-1-1, 18 KOs), who also held a major belt at 130 pounds and two interim crowns at lightweight, is heading off to South Lake Tahoe to prepare for his Showtime-televised July 28 clash with unbeaten Selcuk Aydin (23-0, 17 KOs) in what will be Guerrero’s welterweight debut.
The WBC’s interim title will be on the line for Aydin and Guerrero when they meet at HP Pavilion in San Jose, Calif.
“This is my big opportunity to show the world that I belong with the elite fighters in boxing. Everyone says it can’t be done, but I’m going to show the world skipping super lightweight and going straight to welterweight with no tune up to challenge the No. 1 contender and beating Selcuk Aydin can be done,” said Guerrero.
“I’m here to face the toughest challenges and put myself in a position to get mega-fights. It’s not going to be easy beating a full-fledged welterweight. That’s why my team and I will get the proper training, sparring and diet when I leave to camp. The mountains of Tahoe are set at high elevations which will make for a great training camp. I look forward to making history for the Bay Area and all my fans across the world.”
At a surface elevation of 6,225 feet, Guerrero’s training facility will be located along the border between California and Nevada, west of Carson City.
“When you speak of a fighter who has competed in six different weight classes from 122 to 147 as Guerrero is doing, it’s something special,” said Guerrero’s manager, Bob Santos.
“I believe the only other active fighters that have done it are Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather. Guerrero has all the makings of superstar.”
CORNELIUS BUNDRAGE-CORY SPINKS II ON SHOWBOX: THE NEXT GENERATION
A junior middleweight rematch between IBF beltholder Cornelius Bundrage (31-4, 18 KOs) and mandatory challenger Cory Spinks (39-6, 11 KOs) will take place on June 30 on Showtime from the Fantasy Springs Resort Casino in Indio, Calif. Bundrage took the belt from Spinks by fifth-round knockout in August of 2010.
Photos by Chris Farina, Top Rank
Photos by Tom Hogan, Hogan Photos
Photo by Steve Samoye, Fightwireimages.com
Lem Satterfield can be reached at [email protected]