'Margarito deserves to fight Pacquiao'
MANILA, Philippines – Members from the camps of Manny Pacquiao and Antonio Margarito pleaded to the media and public to give the Mexican a chance to prove himself in the ring after serving out a one-year suspension.
Top Rank, Inc. CEO Bob Arum, who promotes both fighters, cited the Texas Athletic Commission for granting Margarito a license to fight again in the United States after the California State Athletic Commission (CSAC) suspended him last year.
“Evidence determines guilt or innocence and there was not one shred of evidence that Antonio Margarito knew anything about the hand wrap,” Arum said during a press conference at the Rodeo Room of the Beverly Hills Hotel in Los Angeles, California on Tuesday (Wednesday in Manila).
The CSAC suspended Margarito after a plaster-like substance was found in his hand wraps ahead of his January 2009 bout against Shane Mosley.
The Margarito vs Pacquiao fight, which still lacks a marketing title, will be held on November 13 at the Cowboys Stadium in Arlington Texas.
“Probably Pacquiao-Margarito is all the title that it needs,” Arum commented.
Pacquiao’s Canadian adviser, Michael Koncz, slammed Margarito’s critics for being too hard on him.
“I wanna thank the media for coming out its always great to have your support. But on the other hand, I also wanna scold the media, the media that’s writing that we shouldn't be fighting Maragarito and so forth. I think it's absurd,” he stated.
Koncz reminded the media that the former welterweight champion has served his suspension.
“I just wish… if you're not gonna support the fight, maybe don’t write anything about it. It's gonna be a good fight. Styles makes fights,” he continued.
He also repeated what Pacquiao told him which is to move on, forget the past and concentrate on the fight.
Margarito out to surprise the world
The Mexican fighter personally appealed to the public to give him a chance.
“I’ve been asking for this fight. I’m very happy and motivated that I’m here,” he said. “Everything that happened is in the past. We’re in the present. It’s time to show everyone I’m still very good and nobody wants to miss the fight… Now is the present. Forget about the past.”
The Mexican, who goes by the nickname “Tijuana Tornado,” also thanked Pacquiao for taking the fight, and the Texas Athletic Commission for allowing him to fight again in the US.
His manager, Sergio Diaz, and trainer, Robert Garcia, also spoke about Margarito’s chances against Pacquiao.
“I can see the hunger in Antonio. He talks to me. He tells me how hungry he is,” said Diaz.
“We believe that Mexico will have a new champion and a 4-time world champion again,” he added.
Garcia stated that Margarito, whom he said was a great person and a very dedicated athlete, is out to surprise the boxing world on November 13.
“I know we’re going against Manny Pacquiao who is a great fighter, a great champion but we have a tremendous fighter in Antonio Margarito. He’s gonna come and surprise the world... Everybody is in for a surprise. Pacquiao is a legend but we’re gonna make history,” he said.
Fight of the year?
Pacquiao, the World Boxing Organization (WBO) welterweight king, promised that he and Margarito will have a good fight.
“I’m just a fighter doing my job and it’s gonna be a great, great fight. And this is what people want to see… a lot of action in the ring,” said the Sarangani province congressman.
“Margarito has the capability to give a good show. His fighting style is very impressive. His style is [of a] very aggressive fighter, strong and bigger than me, so we have to train hard, both of us, to give a good show.”
Pacquiao and Margarito will fight for the vacant World Boxing Council (WBC) super welterweight belt.
Conditioning coach Alex Ariza, meantime, brushed off the predictions of Team Margarito.
“Everybody keeps saying we’re gonna have a tough fight in our hands. But we’ve always had a tough fight in our hands… Manny ultimately prevails and he’s gonna prevail in this fight as well,” he declared.
Ariza also commented how Margarito is taller and bigger than Pacquiao.
“He definitely seems to be getting bigger and bigger that’s for sure,” he said. “But that’s Manny. He always likes a challenge.”
“It's gonna be a war. Everybody knows Margarito comes to battle, Manny comes to battle. And probably, maybe the fight of the year,” Ariza stated.
Reposted From ABS-CBN News