Manny Pacquiao on saturday night defeated WBA welterweight champion Lucas Matthysse in his first knockout win since 2009.
Manny Pacquiao is faded. But boy howdy, is he not faded enough for the likes of Lucas Matthysse.
Pacquiao (60-7-2, 39 KOs), who turns 40 in December, quieted suspicion that he had slipped dangerously past his prime by showing flashes of his old self in a one-sided dismantling of Argentine brawler Lucas Matthysse at Axiata Arena in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
The 35-year-old Argentine, who came in with a reputation as a big puncher, had no answer to Pacquiao’s blistering speed and he dropped again in the fifth. When a right-left combination thudded home to send Matthysse crashing down for a third time in the seventh round referee Kenny Bayless stepped in to save him from further punishment.
The victory gave the 39-year-old the 60th win of his career, which also includes seven losses and two draws.
It was that Pacquiao, nearing 40, has the miles, was working without Freddie Roach, is “distracted” by his work as a Senator in the Philippines, and is essentially half-retired at this point. When fighters put a foot out the door, it generally doesn’t take long for things to end.
“It was a long time ago since I’ve done that. I came out smoking hot. I’m surprised I knocked him down so early in the third, fifth and seventh. We did a good job in training. We were not pushing hard we controlled our pace and ourselves. I’m no longer young, so thanks to my trainer and all my team members” said Pacquiao.
Matthysse, 35, had won 36 of his 44 fights by knockout going into the bout.
“We did a good job in training,” added Pacquiao. “We were not pushing hard – we controlled our pace and ourselves.
“I’m no longer young so thanks to my trainer and all my team members.”
A shell-shocked Matthysse, who had come in with a record of 36 knockouts in 39 wins with just four defeats, conceded he had no answer to Pacquiao’s speed, movement and power as the “old Manny” returned with a vengeance. “It’s most difficult to be fighting Manny Pacquiao. He’s a great fighter.
“I’m surprised I knocked him down so early,” said Pacquiao.
“It was a long time ago since I’ve done that. I came out smoking hot.” I lost to a great legend” he said.