Does Manny Pacquiao Need Floyd Mayweather To Be The GOAT?
This past weekend Manny Pacquiao (52-3-2, 38 KOs) once again defied the odds and earned an unprecedented eighth world title in eight weight classes as he thumped Antonio Margarito for twelve rounds on route to a resounding unanimous decision victory. That means Pacquiao has beaten fighters when he weighed 106lbs all the way up to men who weighed 165lbs (as Margarito did on Saturday night). While the feat itself is astounding, what’s even more amazing is how he thoroughly abused his opponents, regardless of size.
It all started when a half-joking challenge to Oscar De La Hoya turned into a real fight. Although many boxing experts predicted Oscar’s size would be too much for the Pac Man, Pacquiao shocked all of us by giving De La Hoya the beating of a lifetime. With the taste of history on his tongue, Pacquiao would wreck bigger men like Miguel Cotto, Joshua Clottey and Ricky Hatton before setting his sights on Margarito. He hasn’t just won fights, he’s blown worthy competition out of the water.
His name is now mentioned among the best boxers ever. It’s hard to argue considering he has steamrolled opponents in a manner that may place him ahead of names such as Leonard, Duran, Hagler, Robinson and Ali. But there’s one name missing from his resume—Floyd Mayweather Jr.
While much of the talk has been about Pacquiao, Mayweather is the man to beat. His gaudy 41-0 record and boxing brilliance is everything that could give Pacquiao trouble in the ring. Considering the two have yet to come together in the ring, the boxing world will have a hard time deciding which one is the best of this era. And while many say Pacquiao doesn’t need Mayweather, the truth of the matter is, boxing needs this fight to know who is the best. Mayweather has every right to claim he is one of the best ever. How can he not when he’s still undefeated? But if he dodges Pacquiao, his entire career will be in question.
In Pacquiao’s case, he has to beat the one man everyone knows is the “other” best fighter in the world. It would be tough to go to sleep at night wondering “what if.”
This fight needs to happen before either one of these fighters can be considered the greatest of all time.