Larry Merchant & Oscar De La Hoya: HoganPhotos.com
Manny Pacquiao completely dominated Oscar De La Hoya during his 8th round TKO stoppage win on Saturday night at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, USA. The following are quotes from both boxers in the ring immediately after the fight.
Manny Pacquiao, 48-3-2 (36)
“I think I did well tonight. I am lucky that I win. I am so lucky because I saw the speed in the first round.
“That’s what we were working on every day at the gym. Speed will be the key of this fight. That’s what I am talking about and I used it tonight. I thank God for giving me that strength.
“I trained hard for this fight and that’s why I deserve tonight. Oscar is still a good fighter and I respect him.
“I hit him with a lot of punches in the last two rounds and I don’t think he can last long till the twelve rounds. But I didn’t want to get confidence. I was still careful, trying to counterpunch his right hand. I countered his straight to the body and kept the right hand up because his hook is very strong.
“My job is to train hard and fight in the ring. It is my promoter’s job to negotiate whoever is next. I am just waiting for the next fight.
“I would like to thank all the Filipinos who come here. The Vice President of the Philippines. Also the Governors, the Congressmen and the Mayors and, everybody who comes from the Philippines, thank you very much.
“Right now I am so happy. I deserve my sacrifices and I thank God for giving me this, another victory tonight. To all the Filipinos who love boxing and to all the people who love boxing, thank you very much.”
Oscar De La Hoya, 39-6 (30)
“Manny Pacquiao is a great fighter. He deserves all the credit in the world. He fought a tremendous fight. He was the better man. He deserves all the accolades. He deserves everything he has accomplished and I wish him all the best.
“He is just a great fighter. I have nothing bad to say about him. I give him all the credit in the world. Manny Pacquiao prepared like a true champion. He deserves everything that he has accomplished.
“I’m not shocked. At this stage, when you face a great fighter like Manny, then it is almost expected. I worked hard and I trained hard. But like I told people, in the gym, it is a whole different story.
“My style is to go forward and to fight. Manny Pacquiao boxed on his toes really well and he waited for me to make the mistakes. He deserves everything.
“My heart still wants to fight, that’s for sure, but when your physical doesn’t respond, then what can you do? I have to be smart and make sure I think about my future plans.”
On retirement? “We’ll see what happens. I love the sport, but when it is not your night and a true champion like Manny beats you, obviously, there is another day tomorrow.”
Freddie Roach, Pacquiao’s trainer
“I just had the younger, fresher guy out there. I trained Oscar and I saw him very sluggish in the (Steve) Forbes fight and I thought he couldn’t pull the trigger anymore and I proved I was right.”
Bob Arum, Pacquiao’s promoter
“Manny, I want you to thank Larry (Merchant) first, because he is the guy who thought up this bout. Without Larry, this fight wouldn’t have happened, so you gotta thank him.”