Updates on the Pacquiao vs Margarito fight

Manny Pacquiao’s preparation

How focused can you be if you're always wearing a suit and tie?

In the five months since he won that congressional seat in his native Philippines, Pacquiao’s coach, Freddie Roach, claims there’s been some deterioration in the boxer’s body that might affect his career.


To quote Roach, “He now has a foot problem, and that’s because he wears dress shoes too much. His nagging left heel injury has slowed his running.”

Even though Roach is confident he can put together a game plan to beat Margarito, he’s now worried his fighter will be unable to execute it.

One of the things Freddy Roach has been known for is speaking the truth.

“I know his mind is off the fight. I know his mind is somewhere else, and that’s because of politics. If there are no more challenges out there after this fight, this could be it. If Floyd (Mayweather Jr.) doesn’t come to the table, I don’t know what’s going to challenge him. He loves his other job, and he might be done with this one.”

In the past Roach has relied on their move to his Hollywood gym to help get his fighter focused. In the Philippines Pacquiao spends at least part of each day working as a congressman. Although he’s formally excused from legislative duties during training, he still takes regular phone calls from his staff, sometimes in the middle of a workout. And for the first time in his career with Roach, Pacquiao took a day off from training to travel to Manila for a meeting with President Benigno Aquinz.

If you listen to Bob Arum, Roach’s fears are unwarranted. “Pacquiao has the ability to multitask like nobody else. He doesn’t let distractions affect his performance. I’ve seen him go from meetings all day to a workout, and then he’ll wash up, eat and go to band rehearsal.”

Remember this, Arum is also Margarito’s promoter. “If Manny is trained and in good condition, because of his skill set, he should be able to handle Margarito. He’s just different than anybody else fighting today.”

Pacquiao won’t stop politicking even on this continent. On Friday, he’s headed to Las Vegas for a quick campaign stop in support of Harry Reid, the Democratic senator and combat sports advocate. Pacquiao claims he still has plenty of time to get his mind and body set for the hard-punching Mexican with a 5-inch height advantage.

Since the fight has a 150-pound catch weight, the winner will acquire one of the ABC super-welterweight titles, which would be a belt in Pacquiao’s eighth weight class.

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