By Ronnie Nathanielsz
Strength and conditioning coach Alex Ariza is worried that pound-for-pound king Manny Pacquiao may be pushing himself too hard in training.
Ariza told the Inquirer that while Pacquiao looks great, the Filipino superstar should slow down a bit.
“I’m really worried that he’s pushing [himself] too hard,” said Ariza. “He needs to be extra careful.”
Pacquiao sparred 12 rounds on Saturday, going six with welterweight Shawn Porter and three each with longtime sparring partners, lightweights Raymund Beltran (24-4, 16 KOs) and David Rodela (15-3-3, 6 KOs), who has a scheduled fight next week.
“Pacquiao looks great,” Ariza said. “He is really focused on this one and I don’t see this fight going more than five or six rounds.”
According to Ariza—who teamed up with trainer Freddie Roach two weeks before Pacquiao scored a ninth-round stoppage to win the WBC lightweight title from David Diaz—Manny has “too much pressure, too much power.”
“I have never seen him like this for a long time,” the conditioning guru said.
Even as Pacquiao prepares for his WBO welterweight title defense against former three-time world champion Shane Mosley at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on May 7, Pacquiao is excited about the release of his CD single/DVD “Sometimes When We Touch.”
Pacquiao, who sang the song in his TV appearance on the “Jimmy Kimmel Show” prior to his masterful conquest of Antonio Margarito, used breaks during training to record it.
Pacquiao worked with the same production team that piloted the song to the top of the charts in 1977, with songwriter and original singer Dan Hill in his corner along with producers Mathew McCauley and Fred Mollin.