Marco Antonio Barrera has wanted to avenge his 2003 loss to Manny Pacquiao for four years now. This Saturday, in what is likely to be Barrera’s last big fight, he gets his chance for redemption. Will the Mexican warrior go out with a bang or will Pacquiao give us a repeat performance of his 2003 beating? The undercard sees Steven Luevano makes his first featherweight title defense against Antonio Davis while super middleweight brawler Librado Andrade takes on Yusaf Mack. The televised undercard is rounded out by Contender alumnus Steve Forbes as he takes on Francisco Bojado.
Manny Pacquiao vs. Marco Antonio Barrera
Money Line: Pacquiao -340; Barrera +280
When these two men fought for the first time in 2003, Barrera was the heavy favorite that let distractions tarnish his training time. Pacquiao was not yet a household name amongst boxing fans and was hungrier than the Mexican icon. Pacquiao forced Barrera’s corner to throw in the towel during that fight but now it seems as if the roles are reversed. Barrera plans to retire after this fight and seems to have more motivation than Pacquiao, who is renowned in his native Philippines.
Barrera’s determination mixed with Pacquiao’s seemingly packed schedule outside of boxing sets up a great underdog story for Barrera. Remember, Barrera’s biggest wins came as an underdog. And while Pacquiao’s hobbies tend to be of the time-consuming nature such as acting, singing, and politicking, he still is a ferocious fighter. Let’s not forget that he dominated Barrera in the first fight. Pacquiao is stronger than Barrera and guess what: He’s still younger.
The crowd will be absolutely bonkers in this fight, especially if Barrera ever gets Pacquiao on the run. It will most certainly be a valiant effort on Barrera’s behalf but I just don’t think a storybook ending is in his future. Pacquiao will wear Barrera down and earn a TKO in the later rounds. At 28, Pacquiao will just have far too much stamina and power for Barrera to contend with.
Prediction: Pacquiao by TKO in the 9th round.
Steven Luevano vs. Antonio Davis
Luevano is defending his WBO Featherweight Title for the first time. Davis hasn’t really fought the best opposition, and he’s lost to anyone that was worth a damn. Some title contender. Luevano is a good fighter but undeserving of this spot on the pay-per-view card. It should be a nice snoozer that leads into the main event. Luevano defeated Nicky Cook earlier this year to claim the vacant title he will be defending against Davis, a staple of ESPN fights.
Prediction: Luevano by unanimous decision.
Librado Andrade vs. Yusaf Mack
Andrade is a tough super middleweight that had his ass handed to him by Mikkel Kessler in his only loss. He really took a beating that match but avoided a knockout, showing his durability and granite chin. Yusaf Mack is a serviceable contender but by no means the level of puncher that Kessler is. It ought to be an entertaining fight but Andrade will not be knocked out by Mack. Mack could take a decision but that’s just no fun.
Prediction: Andrade by KO in the 8th.
Steve Forbes vs. Francisco Bojado
Forbes was majorly jobbed in his last fight against Demetrius Hopkins. Bojado is not exactly a makeup fight. Forbes ought to win this fight but it also ought to go the distance as Forbes isn’t exactly known for finishing. Bojado’s last loss was to Jesse James Leija and took two years off after that. Forbes is a former world champion and probably best known as the runner-up from the second season of The Contender. By the way, where the hell is Grady Brewer?
Prediction: Forbes by unanimous decision.
The undercard pretty much sucks but that’s normal for boxing PPVs these days. The money is in the main event and it’s a damn good one. If you are a Barrera fan then you will probably want to get this fight as it is at least his last major fight, if not his last fight ever. You can be assured that both guys will deliver in the main event and it is certainly worth checking out.