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Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Pacquiao Watch: Clottey is tougher than Hatton

Edwin Espejo
Location: General Santos City, Philippines

Filipino superstar Manny Pacquiao will find Joshua Clottey a far tougher opponent than Ricky Hatton, who he disposed in two rounds.

In fact, he is tougher than Puerto Rican Miguel Angel Cotto. Pacquiao will fight the Ghanian on March 13 in Dallas, Texas after his aborted fight with Floyd Mayweather Jr.

Clottey hasa far more superior defense than both Cotto and Hatton and has a sturdier chin.

If Team Pacquiao thinks Clottey is a walk in the park, they better watch out.

Coach Freddie Roach was right. Clottey is passive opponent. He stands in the middle of the ring and has suspect lateral movement. But what he lacks in that department, he makes up for with his big punches and big built. There is also the fact that he has never been stopped in 35 fights – winning 32 of them (20 by knockout). Even Antonio Margarito failed to kayo him. And his other loss, via decision - to Cotto - was highly competitive. He could have won that one.

Of course, Manny has already stopped many unbeaten fighters before and owns the singular honor of being the only guy to legitimately knock down and stop Erick Morales (twice).

Clottey’s ability to take a punch against Manny’s relentless attack will be put to a real test.

In Manny, he will find his defense not enough. Like many others before him, he will find that Manny’s accurate punches come from unorthodox angles thrown with the ‘baddest’ and meanest of intentions, not just hello taps.

He will also have to cope up with Manny’s unrivaled speed over 12 rounds and, for added measure, prove that he could counterpunch and throw that jab effectively. Otherwise, Clottey will have his face and body beaten to a pulp.

While many will be disappointed it will not be Mayweather the Filipino beakbuster will face, Clottey will provide a very entertaining matchup for the Filipino and fans will be thrilled by Manny’s display of firepower.

No wonder HBO decided to cover the event instead of waiting for Mayweather to decide who is the American going to fight. HBO’s decision to have the Pacquiao-Clottey on PPV only proves Manny’s drawing power.

This is sweet revenge for Manny as Floyd is left with his hands full. He can’t take on just any average Joe’s in boxing. Even a fight with Shane Mosley will not be enough to take the lustre from Manny’s shining star.

Well, for Clottey, a chance of an upset is possible, but not probable.


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