After a nearly one year absence, Manny Pacquiao (60-7-2, 39 KO) returned to the ring with an emphatic seventh-round KO victory over Lucas Matthysse (39-5).
Pacquiao captured the WBA Welterweight title with the victory.
This was a lopsided victory as Pacquiao dominated from start to finish. Pacquiao dropped Matthysse in the third, fifth and the final one in the seventh. Throughout the bout, Pacquiao was the faster fighter and his punches had far more effect than Matthysse’s shots.
— Ryan Songalia (@ryansongalia) July 15, 2018
As sharp as Pacquiao looked, the same can’t be said for Matthysse. He looked slow, tentative and intimidated. Analyst and former Pacquiao foe Timothy Bradley opined, “I think Matthysse could have gotten up from that last knockdown,” and his colleagues second his statement.
It’s hard to disagree. Matthysse looked more frustrated and mentally defeated than he was hurt. That said, he looked like a shadow of the fighter who was once one of the sport’s most feared. Many in the boxing also recognized his diminished form.
Great moment for Pacquiao, but Matthysse, at this stage of his career, is a C-level fighter, at best. Top Rank has Bud Crawford, Lomachenko eager for a Pacquiao fight. Can he beat either?
— Chris Mannix (@ChrisMannixYS) July 15, 2018
Got to say Pac. looked good tonight but Matthysse showed next to nothing. A good night for Pacquiao backers and “fight won’t go distance” players.
— Graham Houston (@fightwriterone) July 15, 2018
Despite Matthysse’s less-than-impressive performance, Pacquiao likely showed enough to arrange a big-money fight at welterweight or perhaps even at 140 pounds.
— Douglass Fischer (@dougiefischer) July 15, 2018
Congratulations to Manny Pacquiao who was an absolute cyclone tonight! #PacMatthysse
— Boxing Kingdom (@BoxingKingdom14) July 15, 2018
— Rosie Perez (@rosieperezbklyn) July 15, 2018
The legend continues…
— Top Rank Boxing (@trboxing) July 15, 2018
Another left uppercut!!! Matthysse is stopped! It’s all over. Pacquiao scores his first knockout since his 2009 TKO of Miguel Cotto. He’s back! #pacquiaoMatthysse
— Mike Coppinger (@MikeCoppinger) July 15, 2018
Manny looked better than I expected but Matthysse was abysmal tonight…. #boxing
— Cajun Kim (@steveucnlive) July 15, 2018
Undefeated Top Rank budding star and champion Regis Prograis called Pacquiao out after his win on Saturday night over Juan Jose Velasco.
During the post-fight interview, Pacquiao was non-committal on his future and he didn’t want to call out an opponent, but he did appear to be open to fighting again before the end of the year.
Pacquaio’s purse for the fight was unclear, but Matthysse was reportedly in line to take home $2.5 million, which is by far a career-high for him. That’s not a horrible consolation prize.
More Info: www.forbes.com