Hall of Fame boxing trainer, Freddie Roach, has a very important fight coming up for his most famous fighter, Manny Pacquiao, as it was announced Pacquiao’s upcoming bout against Jeff Horn will be on ESPN. Pacquiao has fought on PPV for the last ten years, but this move may help Pacquiao’s future PPV’s if he is able to look impressive against Horn and thrill the boxing fans that might have tuned out in recent years.
In part 2 of my “On The Ropes” boxing radio interview with Freddie Roach, I discuss with him the future options for Manny Pacquiao and if a fight with Keith Thurman is something they might consider. Freddie also shares his thoughts on Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor and gives a breakdown of Saul Alvarez’ long awaited fight against Gennady Golovkin. Additionally, Roach gives his prediction for Pacquiao vs. Horn and a message to the fans. Here is what Freddie Roach had to say.
Jenna J: A lot of people have expressed their desires for Manny Pacquiao to fight Keith Thurman. How would you feel about that fight?
Freddie Roach: Yeah no problem, I would love that fight. I saw his last fight and he kind of didn’t want to exchange at the end of the fight, he tried to outbox the guy and it made it into a boring fight. The first half of the fight was kind of exciting, but the winner or loser of that fight, we welcome both of them.
Jenna J: It was recently announced that Canelo Alvarez will be fighting Gennady Golovkin on September 16th. What do you think of that bout?
Freddie Roach: I think it’s a great fight, I think it’s a very good fight. It’s about time that it happens. When the best fight the best, there’s no better sport than boxing. These are two guys that are really good fighters, but ‘GGG’ didn’t look that great in his last fight and Canelo looked great in his last fight. Can we go by that? I’m not sure, but the thing is, it’s a very interesting fight and I can’t wait to watch that myself.
Jenna J: You trained Miguel Cotto to fight Alvarez and you used to work with Chavez Jr. What do you see in Saul Alvarez? How do you think he does with Golovkin?
Freddie Roach: At one time everyone thought that Golovkin would kill him and so forth, but I don’t think people think that anymore. Alvarez has become a pretty good fighter and he’s really progressed in his career, he’s gotten better and better every fight. He looked great in his last fight and I think him and ‘GGG’ are dead even at this point.
Jenna J: The Mayweather vs. McGregor was recently announced, do you think that fight is anything more than an exhibition?
Freddie Roach: Not really. Depending on what rules we go by, if we go by boxing rules the boxer wins, if we go by UFC rules, the UFC fighter wins. It depends what rules you go by. These sports to me don’t mix that well, but McGregor does sell for his side and Mayweather sells for his side, so it could be a big fight, but I don’t think there would be any action. I wouldn’t buy it, but that’s me.
Jenna J: Floyd has been out of the ring for a while, do you think he’s anything close to what he used to be at age 40?
Freddie Roach: He’s a lot more careful now, it seems like, but he’s still a very good boxer. He’s not dead yet.
Jenna J: If you could pin down anything on Manny Pacquiao that he doesn’t do as well now due to his age, what would it be?
Freddie Roach: I would love to see him get his killer instinct back and go for the knockout. I know we haven’t done that in a long time and the bible has a lot to do with that, and it’s very tough to argue with the bible. The thing is, people like knockouts in boxing and Manny has lost a lot of his crowd because he hasn’t knocked anyone out in such a long time. I think he needs to get back to that, and I would love to see him do that, and this is the perfect fight to do it in.
Jenna J: Do you think his lack of killer instinct has more to do with his personal beliefs than him aging?
Freddie Roach: Well, it has nothing to do with personal, this is the fight game. The thing is, people get knocked out and they get hurt, this is the game we chose from the beginning. I wish he would just go back to his old self, because he was a really hot product when he was knocking people out. I know he can do it again if I press the right button and get him to fire up.
Jenna J: What is your official prediction for Horn vs. Pacquiao?
Freddie Roach: Pacquiao wins by KO.
Jenna J: Is there any message you want to pass along to the boxing fans?
Freddie Roach: Just thank you for all the support. I thank you all, I’m humbled by your attention and thank you for staying behind me.