Boxing fans are infected by Pac-Man Fever!

16/11/2009 11:43

Another wave of Pac-Man Fever is taking the United States by storm.

The original Pac-Man Fever took the United States by storm in the early 1980s. Of course, I’m referring to the video arcade game whose popularity was so immense that it even culminated with the release of the 1982 album ‘Pac-Man Fever’ by Buckner & Garcia. In addition to the title track, the album also featured a variety of other arcade game inspired songs such as “Ode to the Centipede” and “Do the Donkey Kong”. Only in the 80s!

Pac-Man Fever is once again infecting millions of people throughout the United States. This time, however, it has nothing to do with a chomping yellow mouth or colorful ghosts named Inky, Blinky, Pinky, or Clyde. The fever that now sweeps across the nation is the direct result of the massive intrigue created by superstar Filipino pugilist Manny Pacquiao. With last night’s complete domination of Miguel Cotto, Pacquiao’s popularity has reached an all-time high. He has been on an absolutely amazing run since first defeating Marco Antonio Barrera six years ago today.

Boxing fans cannot get enough of him. Message boards and boxing forums the world over provide indisputable evidence. East Side Boxing is home to the greatest boxing forum on the web, and the number of Pacquiao threads started in their General Boxing Forum following Pacquiao’s victory has been absolutely mind-boggling. In addition to the countless new threads there have been a number of new Pacquiao-inspired polls created and these polls generally create an accurate reflection of what the fans are thinking. Let us now explore some of these polls and delve into the minds of the fans.

Who do you think is the best p4p fighter since Sweet Pea?
51 Manny Pacquiao (72.86%)
12 Roy Jones Jr (17.14%)
2 Bernard Hopkins (2.86%)
5 Floyd Mayweather Jr (7.14%)

My Take: I am with the majority on this one. Manny Pacquiao is clearly the best fighter the sport has seen since Pernell Whitaker. I would even say that Pacquiao has already surpassed Sweet Pea in terms of accomplishment. In a head-to-head mythical match-up, however, I think Whitaker had what it takes to provide Pacquiao with all sorts of problems.

Is Manny Pacquiao a top 15 all time great?
70 yes (73.68%)
25 no (26.32%)

My Take: No. Pacquiao is not yet deserving of a top 15 spot. In fairness to Pacquiao, the question itself is unfair. After all, Pacquiao’s career is not over yet. I still think he has the potential to enter the top 15, and if he could score victories over both Floyd Mayweather and Sugar Shane Mosley in the next year, I think he even has the potential to crack the top ten, but not yet. The fact that people are even questioning if Pac belongs in the top 15 is a testament to his greatness, however.

Who deserves the bigger payday?
95 Manny Pacquiao (64.63%)
10 Floyd Mayweather (6.80%)
42 Equal (28.57%)

My Take:They deserve equal money. The fight needs to happen, and after a lot of posturing from both sides, I fully expect them to settle on a 50/50 split. The fans deserve this fight and that is the fairest way to make it happen. At the same time, I can sympathize with the majority view here. After all, Pacquiao is the one generating massive interest and excitement, not Floyd. In the aftermath of Floyd’s fight with Juan Manuel Marquez casual fans were left unimpressed, but following Pacquiao’s recent fights has resulted in massive widespread Pac-Man Fever.

Has Pac surpassed Roy Jones in the ATG list? Who ranks greater in the ATG list?
150 Pac (85.23%)
26 RJJ (14.77%)

My Take:No doubt about it! Pacquiao has undoubtedly surpassed Jones in terms of achievements and is absolutely deserving of a higher ranking. In addition to having superior accomplishments, Pacquiao has always dared to be great and sought out the toughest challenges whereas Roy Jones was primarily a businessman who never cared to prove his greatness. That alone gives Pacquiao a huge edge.

Has Pac has lost some speed?
21 yes (34.43%)
40 no (65.57%)

My Take: No. Relative to his recent performances I do not believe Pacquiao has had any noticeable loss of speed, be it hand or foot.

Who gave Pacman a better/tougher fight?
3 Oscar De La Hoya (4.23%)
68 Miguel Cotto (95.77%)

My Take: This one is a no-brainer. Cotto obviously gave Pacquiao a tougher fight. De La Hoya never managed to test Pacquiao. On the other hand, Cotto hit him with some really good leather throughout the early rounds. Even though I picked Pacquiao to beat Cotto, I was still surprised by how easily he was able to absorb Cotto’s power. That even three people said Oscar gave him a tougher fight is simply inexplicable.

Pacman vs Ali at 173 (catch weight) who wins?
37 Pac (61.67%)
23 Ali (38.33%)

My Take: No comment.

Who is greater?
49 Manny Pacquiou (18.63%)
214 Roberto Duran (81.37%)

My Take: Wow! This is a tough call, but I give the edge to Duran. Pacquiao may have proven to have the greater ability in being successful against the best in moving up in weight, but Duran was extremely dominant in his campaign as a lightweight and scored an impressive victory against fellow all-time great Sugar Ray Leonard at welterweight. I do not believe Pacquiao could have beaten the likes of Leonard or Duran. For that matter, I do not believe Pacquiao would beat Shane Mosley now. Pacquiao has the potential to surpass Duran, but he would need to beat Floyd to make a stronger case. If he can beat Floyd and Mosley, then he probably clinches it beyond doubt.

Floyd needs Pac more than Pac needs Floyd: True or False?
70 True (80.46%)
9 False (10.34%)
8 Undecided (9.20%)

My Take:Absolutely true! Pacquiao is praised for his guts and his willingness to prove his greatness. Floyd is criticized for not taking on the best available competition. Pretty simple.

As of today, how much better is Pac's Boxing Legacy than Mayweather's?
3 Pac's legacy is slightly better than PBF's (5.88%)
20 Pac's legacy is substantially better than PBF's (39.22%)
27 Pac's legacy is way, way better than PBF's (52.94%)
1 Unsure (1.96%)
My Take: Pacquiao’s is substantially better than Floyd’s. Pacquiao has already solidified his legacy beyond reproach. Even if Pacquiao loses to Floyd, signature victories against Barrera, Eric Morales, Juan Manuel Marquez, Oscar De La Hoya, Ricky Hatton, and Cotto trump anything Floyd has accomplished by a wide margin.

Pacquiao vs. Mayweather-Call It
7 Manny (T)KO (12.07%)
3 PBF (T)KO (5.17%)
14 Manny Decision (24.14%)
34 PBF Decision (58.62%)
0 Draw (0%)

My Take: I am in the minority here. I think Pacquiao will beat Floyd. While I can certainly foresee a scenario where Floyd outboxes Manny, I do not think it is likely. In order for Floyd to score a points victory against Pacquiao he is going to have to do something we have never seen him do inside the ring—he is going to have to fight! Not justovercome adversity, which is something he has arguably done in past contests with Jose Luis Castillo and Zab Judah, but he is going to have to fight hard with intensity in a fight that challenges his physical gifts to their fullest extent. Pacquiao is used to facing tough challenges. He has been challenging himself against the very best for six years strong. Floyd has not been taking on tough challenges, and this will be his downfall against Pacquiao. I like Pacquiao by late stoppage.