Eight division former champion Manny Pacquiao is putting in a lot of work to prevent a further downward spiral after suffering back to back defeats in 2012. In his last fight, in December 2012, he was knocked out cold by Juan Manuel Marquez in six rounds. He returns on November 23 against the dangerous Brandon Rios in the main event of an HBO Pay-Per-View from Macau, China.
Brandon Rios is getting ready for the best Pacquiao ever. How dangerous of an opponent is Rios in your eyes?
“Brandon Rios is an extremely dangerous opponent. He is young, strong and has no quit in him. I raced him up the steps of the Great Wall. He’s a competitor.
“I have seen Rios fight and I am confident that I will win the fight. One of my advantages is my experience against better opposition. A more diversified opposition.
“Rios is an aggressive fighter. He likes to fight on the inside and toe-to-toe. He likes to fight, period. It will be a very entertaining fight for the fans. It will be all-action. A real fight and not a track meet. I am 100% confident of winning this fight. The focus of this camp has been on speed and footwork, which have been my advantages in previous successful fights. I’ll be more careful to avoid the careless error I made against Márquez.
“I want to prove to everyone that I still can fight like the old Manny Pacquiao. I need to restore the public’s confidence in me and my abilities. It’s important that this be an impressive victory. I have already begun to visualize my fight with Rios.
“My gameplan for Rios will be similar to the one I had for Ricky Hatton. That fight didn’t go long enough for me to unveil everything. Maybe this time I’ll be able to show more of that plan. Maybe.”
24/7 Pacquiao/Rios debuts Saturday, Nov. 9 at 12:15 p.m. ET/PT on HBO.
Pacquiao vs. Rios takes place Saturday, Nov. 23 live on pay-per-view beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT.