Marquez only focused on Timothy Bradley

LAS VEGAS. Juan Manuel Marquez is asked about Manny Pacquiao a lot. He was asked about Pacquiao when they were fighting. He was asked about him when they were thinking of fighting. He was asked about him when they finished fighting and thought about fighting again.
Bradley (left) and Marquez (right) put their game faces on at their final pre-fight press conference. Net photo
Bradley (left) and Marquez (right) put their game faces on at their final pre-fight press conference. Net photo

LAS VEGAS. Juan Manuel Marquez is asked about Manny Pacquiao a lot. He was asked about Pacquiao when they were fighting. He was asked about him when they were thinking of fighting. He was asked about him when they finished fighting and thought about fighting again.

And, most annoyingly, Marquez is asked about Pacquiao when he is preparing to fight someone else.

There is no way, it seems, for Marquez to get out from underneath the very large shadow cast by Pacquiao. If Marquez is around and there is someone with a microphone nearby, be very certain that the topic of Pacquiao will come up quickly.

But Marquez’s answer to yet another query about the Filipino superstar – why did you turn down more money for a bout with Pacquiao and instead choose to fight Timothy Bradley? – says much about the man he has become.

Marquez grinned bemusedly as he waited for a question he probably recited verbatim. “You know, Manny Pacquiao is a great fighter and we had a lot of great fights together,” Marquez said.

“But I beat him. I knocked him out, cold. I think I won the other fights, but in the fourth fight, I knocked him out and proved who’s best. And he’s a great fighter, but there are a lot of them and Timothy Bradley is one of them. He has that win over Pacquiao, and he is very tough. He’s a fighter, a real fighter.

Bradley holds the WBO welterweight title and will put it up for grabs when he meets Marquez in the main event of a pay-per-view card Saturday at the Thomas & Mack Center.  [Agencies]

Winning that belt is clearly a great lure and as much of a motivating factor for Marquez as his $6 million purse guarantee. It would represent his fifth championship in five weight classes and put him in the most elite company.

Only five men – Thomas Hearns (5), Sugar Ray Leonard (5), Floyd Mayweather (5), Oscar De La Hoya (6) and Pacquiao (8) – have won titles in five weight divisions.

He comes from a boxing-mad country with a rich tradition in the sport, but he’d be the first Mexican to ever win a world title in five different weight classes if he could pull it off.

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