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Pacquiao vs Rios: Bam Bam Needs Win Even More Than Pac-Man

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http://ringnews24.com/images/pixel.gifIf Manny Pacquiao does not defeat Brandon Rios next Saturday, his career and western civilization will come to an end as we know it. At least, that's the prevalent notion among the boxing community.

For the pressure placed on Pacquiao to end a two-fight losing streak against Rios when they clash in Macau, China, it's actually the younger competitor who can really use the win.

For all of their respective accolades, each man has lost his last fight. Pacquiao's troubles have been amplified and highlighted ad nauseam as the star lost a controversial decision to Timothy Bradley before getting knocked out by Juan Manuel Marquez.


Trainer Freddie Roach admitted in a teleconference that if this fight "does not go well, we will seriously talk about his retirement" (via Sports Illustrated).

"It's really hard to say until we see the fight, but I will be the first one to tell him to retire," Roach said during a teleconference. "We have an agreement that as soon as I tell him that, he will retire."


So, there's certainly pressure in Pacquiao's camp, which is still holding out slim hopes of realizing the long-anticipated dream match with Floyd Mayweather. The pound-for-pound champion is not going to waste his time against a 34-year-old who has reeled off three successive losses.

But for everything at stake for the Pac-Man, he has already achieved massive success with 54 wins. Even if his career ends on a sour note, he'll go down as a legend.

Rios, on the other hand, is still fighting to the top. He held an undefeated record before falling to Mike Alvarado by unanimous decision. A win would catapult the American's stock, but a loss places him in grave danger of getting lost in the fold of relative unknowns.


A win over Pacquiao, probably boxing's second-biggest household name behind Mayweather, entrenches Rios in the public limelight. More marquee main events will follow as a future star blossoms.


While a win hardly destroys all of his past work, two straight losses is much tougher for a 27-year-old riser to combat than a veteran firmly encapsulated in the record books.

Boxers are not built for the long haul, since constantly absorbing blows to the face and body typically hurts. Fighters must cash in when the opportunity arises, and that time is now for Rios. Stealing the spotlight is much better than serving as the side attraction in Pacquiao's redemption tale.

The storylines naturally gravitate to Pacquiao, but the aggressive Rios will face just as much, if not even more, pressure to swing away for the victory of his career.

Read more Boxing news on BleacherReport.com




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