UPDATE (info updated below)
-Clottey out first, did not let HBO weigh him tonight (was right at 147 at Friday's weigh-in). Joshua looks tense, trying to loosen up with his music. Looong walk to the ring from the back of the stadium.
-Crowd going nuts for Pacquiao. Pac flashing smiles, doesn't look worried at all, loving the moment. Pac coming out to "Eye of the Tiger."
- Staredown. Both guys looking down. Round 1 update next...
WBO Welterweight Title
Joshua Clottey (35-3, 20 KOs) vs. Manny Pacquiao (50-3-2, 38 KOs)
pac jabbing early, judging distance. joshua with the tight guard. clottey straight right. pac takes a light jab. pac rips hooks to the body. pac looking for openings. clottey stalking, straight right. close round, many will give it to pac on activity but clottey landed the cleaner punches.
Pac still jabbing gloves. Clottey being very patient. Pac loking for angles but nothing so far. Grazing straight left from Pac. Right hook to the body from Pac. Straight right from Clottey lands. Left hook to the body from Clottey. Pac works the body, Clottey mocks him with a fake wobble. Clottey misses an uppercut. Straight right on Clottey. Manny can't get through the guard cosistently.However, Clottey was outworked here.
Announcers jocking Pac hard. Straight lefts blocked but knock Clottey back. Left uppercut snaps back Pac's head on the inside. Straight left to the body from Pac, Clottey comes back with chopping right hand. Announcers now arguing about who's winning. Steward riding with Clottey. Pac right hook to the body. Hard right from Clottey lands flush.Clottey taking it inside. Pac bullies Clottey into ropes with combos, but nothing lands clean. Clottey again with the straight right. Fight definitely heating up, close round.
Pac focused on the body. Left hook from Pac downstairs. Manny getting loose, throws a double punch LOL Gets warned by referee. Clottey stuck int he defensive shell. Right by Clottey, Manny bangs him in the corner. Clottey losing big because he's not throwing. Straight left to the pit of the stomach from Pac. Manny trying to find the head. Clottey with 2 hard body shots. Hard left jab from Clottey. Clottey not active enough.
Both guys looking to counter earlly. Short right by Clottey, Manny tries to fire back but hits air. Manny moving side to side, Clottey can't get set. Double right hook from Pac. No clean shots yet from eigther guy. Pacquiao works the combos to close out the round. Clottey content to play defense. Frustrating to watch. Is Clottey afraid to get hit??? Trainer tells him he has to take chances...
Pac with the rope a dope like he did Cotto. Clottey lands a right but isn't biting. Pac with hard hooks to the body. No urgency from Clottey yet. Straight right from Clottey. Fires another, Pacquiao comes back with right jab. Pac rains hooks on Clottey, who stays in the defensive shell. Clottey not being hurt, but falling further behind.
Is this a sparring session or a fight???Clottey starts off with another straight right. Clottey has to put his foot on the gas now or all is lost. Pac trying to works hooks to the body again. Clottey moves foward, onyl throws one right. Left uppercut from Clottey on the inside. Pac with another flurry. Another round in the bank for Pac.
Hard left hook from Clottey early. Pac takes it well. Crowd very quiet, and not much for them to cheer about. Pacquiao beating away at Clottey's gloves, looking for anything. Joshua gets warned for a low blow, Manny takes a few seconds to recover. Glancing straight left from Pac to the head. Pac still active, working the uppercut. Clottey's hands come down for a moment.
More of the same. Pac is still going for it and eggs Clottey to punch him. Pac back to moving in and out with combinations. Clottey gets back into the ropes with hooks to the head. Clottey frustratingly flat and just dropping round after round.
Crowd is dead. Clottey just seems content to go the distance. Pac still working, digs a left hook to be the body, but gets clip with a left hook. No combinations from Clottey. Pacquiao has a mouse under right eye. Pacquiao eats a straight right . Clotteylands anotehr straight right that stuns Manny. Pacquiao comes back with a few jabs. Pacquiao drives Clottey across the ring with hooks to the body. Clottey woke up...somewhat.
Pacquiao triples the right hook, and is a on a bicycle. Clottey nails him with another straight right, but still just one punch at a time. They start to exhange and Pacquiao gets the better of it. Clottey does want the firefight and goes back into his shell. 2 flush left uppercuts from Clottey. Pacquiao fire back with hook combinations downstairs. Clottey cannot maintain any momentum.
Left hook from Clottey. 2 hard straight lefts from Pacquiao. Short left uppercut from Clottey. Pac outworking him, trying to close strong. Left uppercut again snaps back Pac's head. Pacquiao closes by again pushing Clottey back to the ropes with combinations.
Official Scorecard- 120-108,119-109, 119-109 Unanimous Decision for Manny Pacquiao
Pacquiao was his usual self, and unfortunately we got the same old Joshua Clottey. Overall a disappointing card for such a great venue, and Clottey should no desire to take the title. Bring on the Mosley-Mayweather winner ASAP for this Fall.
Postfight interview Manny verifies it was a hard fight, and he felt Clottey's power early. He worked on jabs to offset Clottey's offense. Clottey says his problem was Pacquiao's speed, and states this is the first fight he felt he lost. He didn't want to exchange because of Manny's speed.
Pacquiao is asked about Mosley-Mayweather. Manny says he wants the fight and the people want it. But, he thinks Floyd doesn't want it right now. Regarding the Olympic drug testing, Pacquiao completely dodges the question, but believes Floyd will win over Mosley. Freddie Roach demands that Floyd stop trying to dictate rules and leaves that to the commission. Pacquiao then chimes in that he doesn't feel Mayweather's style is that difficult.
Tonight, top welterweights Manny Pacquiao and Joshua Clottey do battle in front of an estimated 45,000 fans at Dallas Stadium. The site is billed by Cowboys owner Jerry Jones as the most avant-garde entertainment facility in the world, and will serve as a litmus test on boxings current drawing power.
For challenger and perennial contender Joshua Clottey, this fight represents a golden, and possibly final chance to exorcise past performance demons. In his 2 biggest fights against Antonio Margarito and Miguel Cotto, Clottey appeared to be in the drivers seat early before suffering collapses. With Margarito, Clottey dominated early before going into a shell following a hand injury and losing a decision. Against Cotto, Clottey seemed close to forcing a stoppage before inexplicably dropping his punch output and losing a controversial split decision.
Pacquiao is taking on his second consecutive top 5 welterweight. Although he is the favorite, there exists the possibility of a letdown since the original opponent today was supposed to be Floyd Mayweather in the most lucrative fight in boxing history (both men could not come to terms on Olympic style drug testing). However, an impressive showing by the Filipino icon can put him in the drivers seat should talks resume with Mayweather as expected later this year.
Joshua Clotteys mindset tonight must be constant punching and pressure. Hes facing the most dynamic fighter in the game today, one who never stops throwing punches for 3 minutes of every round. Simply hiding behind his tight guard will just result in him being outworked and posting a lopsided decision loss. Clottey has underrated handspeed, and although its not on the level of Pacquiao, he must be willing to take chances and punch with Pacquiao when the Filipino darts in to let loose a combination. Manny has yet to be consistently hit by a bigger man, so Clottey as a big welterweight has a shot to wear down Pacquiao if he can land with authority and regularly for several rounds.
Manny Pacquiaos key to victory remains doing what he does better than anyone else; punches from every angle, and continuous movement. As a defensive-first fighter, Clottey instinctively looks to block his opponents strikes first before launching his own firepower. This is a huge advantage for Pacquiao, who will have to keep Clottey constantly turning through movement and prevent him from getting set to launch any offense or counterpunch. Clottey later admitted after the Cotto fight he clammed up and became cautious later after the first round flash knockdown. If Pacquiao can land hard early, the Ghanian welterweight may mentally go to the same place.
Clottey looks great as usual, but I dont believe hell have an answer for Pacquiaos speed and movement. The challenger makes it a competitive fight, but in the end Pacquiao lands more punches, and Clottey more than likely will have stretches of inactivity where he sticks to defense and hurts himself badly on the cards. A Pacquiao knockout would be shocking considering Clotteys durability, so the prediction is Manny Pacquiao by clear decision over Joshua Clottey, probably by the score of 116-112.