By Dallas Orysiuk (@Chargers204)
This Saturday, for the first time since his 2011 fight against Shane Mosley, Manny Pacquiao will not be fighting on HBO when he takes on Jessie Vargas, 27-1, 10 KOs. The bout will be broadcasted independently by Top Rank.
Fighting on an independent broadcast won’t be the only first for Pacquiao this Saturday. Saturday will be the first time Pacquiao is boxing as his second job. Manny Pacquiao has fought as a congressman before, but this will be his first time fighting as a full time senator. He has been known to have busy training camps in the past and this camp Pacquiao has looked even busier than usual, working as a senator during the day and a boxer in the evening. One wonders how much Pacquiao’s heart is still in the sweet science, and if this will affect his performance on Saturday.
For years people have been saying that Manny looks shot, and it sure looked that way when he took on Mayweather in 2015. But in his most recent bout, Pacquiao looked sharp while soundly defeating Timothy Bradley. Following the victory there were talks of retirement, but the talks were short lived and Pacquiao has said he is coming back for the love of boxing.
Pacquiao’s opponent, the 27 year old Jessie Vargas, is coming off a 9th round TKO over Sadam Ali. Vargas is no stranger to playing the underdog and Saturday will be no different. Vargas has faced a number of solid opponents and comes to fight every time. If Pacquiao’s heart is no longer thereor if age has continued to take its toll; Vargas will pose a solid threat to Pacquiao.
Regardless of how the fight turns out; Vargas will bring the heat, Pacquiao likes to fight and can throw lightning fast combinations so it should be an entertaining affair. If Pacquiao doesn’t look good, or loses for the matter, this may be the final time we see him in the ring.by