By Elisinio Castillo
WBA 'regular' welterweight world champion Lucas Matthysse (39-4, 36 KOs) does not believe eight division beltholder Manny Pacquiao (59-7-2, 38 KOs) is the same fighter who terrorized the sport a decade ago.
Pacquiao, 39-years-old, is coming off a twelve round decision loss to Jeff Horn from last July at the Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane, Australia.
After failing to capture a world title at 140-pounds, Matthysse believes his career is once again elevated and seasoned for bigger heights in the welterweight division.
On the other hand, the Filipino superstar is getting close to the end of his professional run.
For this contest, he parted ways with longtime trainer Freddie Roach, who worked with the boxer since 2001.
Pacquiao is currently being trained by his best friend and assistant trainer, Buboy Fernandez.
Matthysse expects fireworks and still views Pacquiao as a dangerous fighter, but he believes the veteran has aged and no longer has the same attributes that gained him eight divisional belts.
"I really like his style. We have the same height, he is a fighter who comes forward and who likes to attack like me, so that is going to be good for my way of boxing. I have already faced left-handed fighters and it did not create any problems for me. In addition, Pacquiao has had a lot of hard fights, and in the last few it was evident that he gets hit more often and that he does not have the same speed and explosiveness as before. Anyway, he's still a boxing legend and that's a danger," Matthysse said to Tomas Arribas.
"[If I beat Pacquiao], this will not change my way of living. I continue to share things with the family, being at home with my children, roasting, getting together with everyone in my circle as many times as I can. I handle myself like anyone else. I still live in Trelew, and while people out there go a little crazy when they see me, I have my feet firmly planted on the ground. I am a normal and simple person. I have always liked this life and it will always be like that."