After three national anthems, a mini-Nelly concert, and two very long walk-ins the fight is finally on.
Round 1: Margarito gets his jab off. Pacquiao lands a left cross during an exchange, and a few straight lefts to the stomach. So far, Pacquiaio's speed controls the action. [Pac's round]
Round 2: Pacquiao moves to his left. Margarito clips him with a cuffing right, and then lands a solid left hook. Pacquiao lands right-left-right combination, but Margarito backs him to the ropes. Pacquiao goes to the body with both hands. Margarito got in a body shot and they trade shots on even terms, but Margarito gets in a clean uppercut and hook to the body. [Margarito's round]
Round 3: Pacquiao gets off first and then moves around Margarito. Pacquiao stays on his toes but pauses to land lefts to the body and rights to the head. Margarito tries to corner Pacquiao but he walks into a hard left that makes the mauler smile. Margarito continues to stalk but Pacquiao continues to nail him on the fly. [Pacquiao's round]
Round 4: Margarito backs Pacquiao to the ropes but he eats hard counter shots on his way in. Pacquiao quickly spins out of range and then attacks, putting his punches together and swelling Margarito’s right eye as he wades forward. A hard left to the body hurt Margarito midway through the round, and the bigger man hunched over as he backed up. Margarito continues to come forward, walks into a another hard body shot. [Big round for Pacquiao]
Round 5: Pacquiao is ready to get his fight on. He willingly backs to ropes and takes Margarito’s best shots (all of which are very slow) and then attacks him with fast punishing punches. Pacquiao measures Margarito with right hooks to the head and lefts to the body. Margarito sucks it up and even gets an uppercut in with 30 seconds left, but he was mainly beat up in this round. [Another big round for Pacquiao]
Round 6: Margarito starts the round with an almost-shut right eye. Pacquiao times him with hard one-two combinations. Pac sticks and moves effectively, but Margarito continues to pursue the little dynamo. Pacquiao doesn’t press the action as much and Margarito gets in a couple lefts to the body that appeared to hurt the smaller man. Margarito tried to jump on him but Pacquiao ran him into hard counter shots to the head. [Pacquiao’s round]
Round 7: Margarito’s eye was checked before the start of the round but he was allowed to continue and he’s trying to make the most of what looks like a very slim opportunity. Pacquiao tees off on Margarito for a minute and a half but Margarito landed a hard body shot that would have folded most men. Pacquiao continues to land three-, four- and five-punch combinations. Margarito continues to somehow absorb the frightful punishment. [Pacquiao’s round]
Round 8: It’s doubtful that Margarito can see out of his right eye but the fight continues. The man is insanely tough but should he be allowed to fight on much longer? Perhaps so, Margarito gets Pacquiao against the ropes and works him over with heavy body shots. Pacquiao shows that he’s just as tough as Margarito and fires back with gusto. But Margarito keeps pushing forward and manages to land a few body shots and a head-jarring left uppercut, but Pacquiao takes them. Margarito rakes his body again when a seemingly slowing-down Pacquiao is pushed to the ropes in the final 30 seconds of the round. [Margarito’s round]
Round 9: Pacquiao returns to his stick-and-move tactics, which is probably a good idea. Pacquiao throws and lands everything but the kitchen sing but Margarito absorbs the punishment and continues to stalk forward. Pacquiao is content to box from a distance and easily spin away from the bigger man whenever his back gets near the ropes. [Pacquiao’s round]
Round 10: Pacquiao lands three-punch combos at will for a minute and a half and then tries to close the show by applying pressure and more shots, violently snapping Margarito’s head around. Margarito looks ready to go with 30 seconds left. He barely survives the round but Garcia should pull the plug. Margarito’s got nothing left. [Pacquiao’s round, perhaps 10-8]
Round 11: There’s no way Margarito should be fighting at this point. He’s finished. All he needs if for Pacquiao, the referee or his corner to take him out of his misery. It’s sick target practice for Pacquiao. Cole stops the action to hold fingers in front of Margarito’s face and then lets the slaughter continue. Shameful. The fight should be over by now, but somehow the round finishes with Margarito trudging his way back to his corner.
Round 12: Pacquiao appears to be carrying Margarito. Either he feels compassion for the poor bastard or his hands are really hurting bad from pounding the hell out of Margarito’s head all night. Pacquiao lands a few combinations in the final minute, and digs in a little bit in the final 30 seconds, allowing Margarito the honor of going the distance. [Pacquiao’s round]