February 16th, 2011 By John Signorella
New York, NY – Significant members of the media and hundreds of fans flocked to the exquisite Light House Ballroom at Chelsea Pier in New York City to witness globally recognized international pugilist icon Manny Pacquiao (52-3-2, 38 KOs) and highly decorated three division former champion Shane Mosley (46-6-1, 39 KOs) address the public in regard to their upcoming mega fight.
A MATTER OF CLASS
In a luxurious atmosphere, promoter Bob Arum verbally displayed his admiration toward both athletes, which in essence; became the theme of the day. In a refreshing change of pace from common pre fight build up, there was no trash talking, no altercations, no frills; just professionals that are all business about their sport. Such adequate was on display when legendary trainer Nazim Richardson showed respect for his fighter’s adversary stating; “if you don’t like Manny Pacquiao, you don’t like boxing…maybe you don’t like people in general”. Therafter, master trainer Freddie Roach mentioned that they are cognizant that Shane wasn’t “up” for his last opponent (Sergio Mora, draw 12) and they are expecting the best from Mosley’s vast repertoire come fight night. When both fighters hit the podium to offer their sound bytes, more of the same acknowledgement of appreciation toward each fighter was the evident. After the conference, a delicious luncheon was held where I was able to catch up with both combatants and their trainers to ask some questions regarding preparation for the fight. Here are the highlights from the interviews I conducted:
JS: Shane, what facet of Manny’s game concerns you the most?
SM: I have no concerns, he’s a fighter and I like that. He will fight, he will bring it, and he’ll come with it. He’s a warrior and I like that.
JS: What is Pacquiao’s biggest weapon?
NR: His dedication. His discipline.
JS: Where will training be conducted?
FR: Four weeks in the Philippines, four weeks in Los Angeles.
JS: Not to look past Shane, but who do you guys want as a next foe?
FR: I want Floyd (Mayweather), Manny wants Floyd, the world wants Floyd.
JS: Has Sergio Martinez been discussed?
FR: Yes, it’s a fight we wanted but it ain’t gonna happen at 160.
JS: What aspect of Shane’s style are you going to be aware of the most?
MP: His hand speed. He has very good hand speed and foot work. His power.
JS: If successful on May 7th, what’s next?
MP: I will return home to the Philippines to rest and see what’s next after I relax.
JS: Are there any fighters you admire or enjoy watching right now?
MP: Myself (laughs).
As always, stay tuned for my preview come fight week!
Photography by: Mike Liddle