Pacquiao (54-5-2, 38 KOs) went into the bout as the only professional boxer to have won world championships in eight separate weight classes. He was also the recipient of the fighter of the decade award which was bestowed on him by the Boxing Writers Association of America. His opponent Marquez (55-6-1, 40 KOs) has captured championship belts in four different weight divisions, but has had a difficult time with Pacquiao up until this bout.
In their first three fights they had fought a total of 36 rounds and even though Marquez had a draw and two losses to his name, many fans thought he had won one, two, or all three of the bouts as they were so close. However, all three of them went the distance and he just couldn’t convince the judges that he had done enough to earn a victory. He knew if he knocked Pacquiao out that there would be no controversy or dispute. And that’s exactly what he did.
Marquez was decked three times in the first round in their first meeting back in 2004, but fought back to earn a draw. He was dropped in the second fight in 2008 and lost a close decision and also dropped another controversial call last year. Pacquiao was also involved in another highly controversial bout when he lost the WBO Welterweight Championship earlier this year to Timothy Bradley of America. Most fans and boxing writers described it as one of the worst decisions in boxing history, but admittedly, Pacquiao said he put in a subpar performance that night.
The 33-year-old southpaw from the Philippines had a good opening round against the 39-year-old Marquez on Saturday and was looking pretty good in the second as well as he was moving around the ring with ease and content with using his strong right jab. He was landing first and seemed to be in control of the action. However, close to the end of the third round Marquez caught him with a tremendous right hand to the head that dropped Pacquiao to the canvas. It was a blow that would have knocked most boxers out, but Pacquiao managed to get to his feet fairly quickly and survive the round.
Marquez didn’t go after him in the fourth and Pacquiao seemed to have totally recovered from the knockdown, even though he was a bit tentative. Marquez attempted to find him with the right hand again, but Pacquiao managed to evade it pretty well. In the fifth round the tide turned again as Pacquiao landed a straight left hand down the pipe and caught Marquez flush on the chin, sending him to the canvas. Marquez appeared to be hurt and Pacquiao loaded up with some more solid shots that had his opponent bleeding and bruised by the end of the round. Marquez managed to remain on his feet until the end of the round and Pacquiao was back in control and confident.
Round six was much of the same with Pacquiao going after Marquez and many fans thought he might be able to stop him sometime soon. However, with just a couple of seconds to go in the stanza Pacquiao walked into a sensational right hand from Marquez and he fell to the canvas face first. He was out cold and Marquez had finally earned a win against him. Pacquiao remained on the ring mat for several minutes and it was a scary scene since Marquez hit him with one of the best knockout punches ever seen in the sport. Pacquiao finally made it to his feet and the two boxers hugged each other.
The official time of the knockout was 2:59 of the sixth round. Pacquiao was ahead 47-46 on all three of the judges’ scorecards when the bout ended and had connected with 94 of his punches compared to Marquez’s 52. However, one of those 52 punches made all the difference in this epic bout.