Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Trainers' Fight

The upcoming mega bout between Oscar “The Golden Boy” De La Hoya and Manny “PacMan” Pacquiao is not just a contest between two boxers. It is also esteemed matchups between three (no, not two) legendary trainers in the history of the sport.
Don Ignacio Beristain, or simply Don Nacho, is the head trainer of the De La Hoya camp. More than training the Golden Boy, Don Nacho is in this mix simply because he has a score to settle against Freddie Roach, Pacquiao’s wise mentor. Don Nacho was the one who trained Juan Manuel Marquez in both fights against PacMan. Equating the whole matter to simple terms, JMM’s loss to the Filipino slugger is Don Nacho’s loss to Roach.

On the other hand, Roach has been on Pacquiao’s side and closely guided the young southpaw’s rise to superstardom. As a coach, Roach sees the Dream Match as an opportunity to prove that Pacquiao’s victory over JMM was no fluke. Another issue for Roach to grind come fight night is to prove that Oscar “can’t pull the trigger anymore.”

While the battle between two legendary corner men are already interesting, adding another brilliant and equally respected trainer to the mix raises the notch a tad higher.

Enter Angelo Dundee.

For those who do not know Angelo Dundee, I’ve got two names for you: Muhammad Ali and Sugar Ray Leonard. The guy who produced such champions and icons is mentoring De La Hoya alongside Don Nacho.

So it’s two guys against one come fight night. Much like Don Nacho and Dundee double-teaming Roach. But underestimating Roach is not a wise thing to do, as the trainer from Los Angeles also produced a string of champions, Mike Tyson being one of them in addition to Pacquiao.

But Roach proudly exclaims that Pacquiao is his greatest work. If Pacquiao wins, then perhaps Roach as a trainer is more than legendary. Otherwise, Nacho will have his revenge while Dundee is already happy being a part of a historic bout.