Veteran trainer Freddie Roach believes that Manny Pacquiao doesn’t need to imitate any fighter or emulate any boxing style to defeat the unbeaten Floyd Mayweather Jr. in their much-awaited bout on May 2 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Roach is reacting to the comment of trainer Robert Garcia that Pacquiao could use the game plan of his ward Marcos Maidana to beat Mayweather.
“The only things I learned from the two Mayweather-Maidana fights was that Floyd was hittable,” the seven-time Boxing Writers Association of America Trainer of the Year, Roach, told The Manila Times during a phone interview.
Maidana gave Mayweather some problems in their two bouts last year but the reigning World Boxing Council and World Boxing Association super welterweight champ was still able pull off unanimous decision wins.
“Maidana and Manny have such different styles of fighting that whatever his plan was it wouldn’t be adoptable for Manny,” said Roach. “Manny just needs to be Manny in that fight. He doesn’t need to adopt any boxer’s fighting style to beat Floyd.”
Garcia said recently in a radio interview that Pacquiao could copy the way Maidana applied pressure on Mayweather in their two fights.
“I think, just like Maidana did the first time, put all that pressure. Stay on him, don’t give him any time to breathe, that’s the only way,” Garcia told ESNews. “We were close, we almost pulled it off.”
“That’s the only way, what else? Or somebody smarter than him, but there’s nobody out there smarter than him right now. Manny has the style because he throws a lot of punches. He’s just going to throw hundreds of punches compared to Mayweather’s one or two here and there.”
Roach said that he specifically picked young fighters that emulate Mayweather’s style as Pacquiao’s sparring mates.
“We prefer sparring mates who are fresh, strong and will challenge Manny by emulating various aspects of Mayweather’s style,” he said. “Tune in on May 2. Manny has waited five years for the chance to show Mayweather what a professional tastes like. Manny is going to serve it up piping hot.”
Roach also said that Pacquiao’s religious zeal, as an Evangelical Christian would not affect his aggressiveness as a boxer.
“Manny knows how to balance this. I have no worries about him going for the knockout when the opportunity presents itself,” said Roach.