Thursday, February 11, 2010

Clottey vs. Pacquiao: Joshua needs to attack Manny’s body

Pacquiao vs ClotteyBy Dave Lahr: I’ve done an exhausting study of World Boxing Organization welterweight champion Manny Pacquiao’s last 10 fights stretching over the last four years and I’ve discovered that few of Pacquiao’s opponents have even tried to land to his body. The vast majority of them have been pure head hunters. What they don’t understand is that Pacquiao’s weakness isn’t his head, it’s his body. That’s where challenger Joshua Clottey (35-3, 20 KO’s) needs to direct his attention if he wants to beat Pacquiao on March 13th in their fight at the Dallas Cowboy stadium.

Believe me, if Clottey tries winning the fight by hammering the head of Pacquiao, he’s wasting his time. That’s not the way to beat Pacquiao. Clottey as well be hitting a large pumpkin filled with rocks, because he’s not going to even make a dent if he focuses on hitting Pacquiao upstairs in his brain housing.

What Clottey should do is fake Pacquiao with right hands to the head, and then come downstairs with hooks to the body to take the life out of Pacquiao. Manny doesn’t like getting hit in the midsection. That’s something I’ve noticed. You hit him in the head, and you’re fine. But if you tag him in the belly, Pacquiao reacts as if you pulled the plug out of his energy stores.

He backs off and gets a look on his face that seems to suggest that he’s in pain. Luckily for Pacquiao, the only opponent that worked on Pacquiao’s body in the past 10 or so years was Mexican great Erik Morales. He beat Pacquiao going to the body in 2005. However, Morales was weight drained in his two rematches with Pacquiao, and not in the position to win the fight because of the huge amount of weight he had to take off to get in shape.

Okay, so Clottey needs to forget all about trying to blast Pacquiao’s head. All he’ll do is wind up hurting his hands. Instead, Clottey needs to chase Pacquiao around for five or six rounds throwing nothing but body shots as hard as he can. I wouldn’t even try to have Clottey pace himself. Forget that. Clottey needs to think of the fight as a six round bout instead of a 12 rounder.

He should go all out for six rounds and tear into Pacquiao’s body with both fists. I think if he does this, Pacquiao will wilt quickly and will be in full retreat from the shots. Any offense that Pacquiao might have had will be turned off because of Clottey’s massive body attack. If Clottey fights tooth and nail attacking Pacquiao’s body, I think Clottey has a good chance of stopping Pacquiao with a body shot.

Freddie Roach, the trainer for Pacquiao, isn’t prepared for an opponent that will be going after Pacquiao’s weakness. Roach will clueless what to do other than telling Pacquiao to return fire. That won’t work, because Clottey, if he digs in hard with his left hooks to the bread basket of Pacquiao, will weaken him to the point where he’s as harmless as a kitten.


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