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Against Rios, Which Pacquiao Will It Be?

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by Eric Raskin


Manny Pacquiao - Photo Credit: Will Hart

Most knockouts happen slowly, gradually, rounds of punishment accumulating until a conclusive punch or series of punches makes it official. In those cases, the audience is able to brace for the impact, even if the fighter isn't.

When Manny Pacquiao got knocked out by Juan Manuel Marquez in December 2012, there was no bracing, by him or by us. One second Pacquiao was bouncing on his toes, about to head into the second half of the fight with a comfortable lead over his Mexican rival; the next second he had bounced directly into unconsciousness. We had no time to prepare ourselves for what we were seeing, which is why most of us responded by screaming incoherently at the moment of impact. Nobody had any words at the ready. It was the most jolting image in all of sports, a boxer previously thought to be something close to superhuman reduced to snoring rubble. There was no time to process it.




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