Manny Pacquiao was in a good mood for the initial press conference for his upcoming bout for welterweight supremacy.
The eight-division world champion and Philippine Senator went face to face with unified WBC and IBF Welterweight World Champion Errol “The Truth” Spence Jr.
The press conference was held in Los Angeles Sunday, where they previewed their blockbuster championship showdown that headlines a FOX Sports PBC Pay-Per-View Saturday, August 21, from T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
Manny Pacquiao responds to Floyd Mayweather saying he'll give Errol Spence tips on how to beat him… 👀 pic.twitter.com/KO2qFJS93e
— Boxing Exposure (@BoxingExposure_) July 12, 2021
Manny had a lot to say, including throwing shade at his now retired generational rival, Floyd “Money” Mayweather, Jr.
“I don’t think Errol needs advice from Floyd Mayweather. I believe that Errol is a better fighter than Mayweather. Errol can teach Floyd how to fight toe-to-toe.”
The jab at Mayweather’s defense-heavy strategy has no bearing on his next opponent, a boxer-puncher and as aggressive as they come.
Manny Pacquiao and Errol Spence come face-to-face for the first time ahead of their fight on August 21st…
— Michael Benson (@MichaelBensonn) July 11, 2021
“There were a lot of opportunities for me to pick an easier fight than this,” said Pacquiao. “But I picked Errol Spence Jr. because I want a real fight and a great fight for the fans. I’m a fighter, and boxing is my passion.
“Errol Spence Jr. is aggressive, young, and undefeated. He’s dedicated to his career. This is definitely not an easy opponent. This is the kind of opponent you can never underestimate.
“It’s been a long time since I fought a southpaw opponent. We had to change some of our strategy compared to previous fights, and we’ll throw some different combinations.
Fighting out of his native Desoto, Texas, Spence returned to the ring last December for the first time since miraculously surviving a car accident in October 2019. He was thrown from the vehicle before it crashed.
Spence thrilled his hometown crowd at AT&T Stadium by defeating two-division champion Danny Garcia by unanimous decision.
— FOX Sports: PBC (@PBConFOX) July 9, 2021
“This is a great opportunity, said Spence. “Coming off of my accident, I went right to fighting Danny Garcia and now Pacquiao. A lot of people were in the Pacquiao sweepstakes. When I got the call about this fight, I agreed right away and didn’t give it a second thought.
“There aren’t that many southpaws in boxing, so you don’t usually spar that many. We’ve got a lot of guys in camp now who can fight that left-handed style. Obviously, I can’t find someone who fights exactly like Manny, but you can find guys who can mimic the tempo and pace. So that’s who we’ve been working with.
Spence represented the U.S. at the 2012 Olympics before turning pro later that year and scoring knockouts in 10 of his first 12 fights, showing the promise that he would eventually fulfill on the biggest stages of the sport.
Two years ago Errol Spence Jr. called out Manny Pacquiao, and now he will have his shot at him 🗣
— FOX Sports: PBC (@PBConFOX) July 11, 2021
“I don’t want to be overconfident, because Errol is too good of an opponent. His determination and passion for the sport is always there. When I say I’m going to do something, it’s real and from the heart, it’s not to impress anybody.
“I had started training in the last week of May in the Philippines. So when I got here to Los Angeles, I was just continuing what I was doing. It’s good for me to have the rest that I’ve had the last two years. I’ve been boxing since I was 12 years old until now. When I went back to training, I was still hungry and dedicated.
“I won’t predict another first-round knockdown like I had against Thurman. I’m focusing my mind, body, and spirit on winning the fight. That’s the only goal.
“This is one of the biggest challenges in my career. I can’t say it’s the biggest because I’ve been fighting the best fighters in the world for years. But he’s right up there with anyone I’ve faced.”