Manny Pacquiao, the Filipino boxing superstar, announced his retirement at the age of 42, after a 26-year career in which he won world championships in an unprecedented eight weight divisions.
Pacquiao (62-8-2, 39 KOs) made his professional boxing debut at the age of 16 as a junior flyweight in 1995. Over the last two decades, he has risen from poverty in his home Philippines to appear in some of the sport’s greatest battles. He went on to become one of the highest-paid athletes in the world. He’ll be able to focus more on his political career now that he’s out of the ring.
He was a part of a number of famous battles. Here are some of Pacquiao’s most memorable moments:
vs. Chatchai Sasakul, December 4,1998
Pacquiao earned his first world championship at the age of 19 when he knocked out local hero Sasakul in Thailand with a left punch to the jaw.
Pacquiao’s relentless pressure fighting, which we’ve come to expect from him, was on display throughout the eight rounds of the WBC world flyweight championship battle.
Pacquiao, in his third year as a pro, lacked many of the talents and mobility he would later demonstrate, but he still crushed a more experienced opponent at a crucial point in his early career.
vs. Marco Antonio Barrera I, November 15, 2003
Pacquiao won a majority decision against Mexican legend Barrera at the Alamodome in San Antonio, his greatest win to that date, now that he had American trainer Freddie Roach on his side.
Before stopping Barrera in the 11th round of a non-title featherweight battle, Pacquiao had recovered from a first-round knockdown and was far up on the judges’ scorecards. Pacquiao knocked Barrera out in the third and eleventh rounds before the bout was halted by the Mexican’s team.
Barrera, largely regarded as the finest featherweight in the world at the time, was unable to deal with Pacquiao’s pace and was forced to retire after being pinned against the ropes.
Pacquiao delivered 257 power punches in his second featherweight bout, compared to 101 for Barrera, according to CompuBox.
vs. Erik Morales, Jan. 21 and Nov. 19, 2006
Pacquiao thrashed Morales twice in 2006, establishing himself as a force in the junior lightweight division.
Pacquiao became the first man to stop Morales in a 10th-round TKO triumph at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas, 10 months after losing on points to Morales in his 130-pound debut.
Pacquiao never stopped striking and completely outclassed Morales, who was a three-weight world champion at the time.
Pacquiao performed an even better job on Morales later in the year, knocking him out three times in a third-round knockout at the same location.
Morales, who was never the same after that, remarked, “For the first time in my career, I genuinely felt the power of an opponent as I’ve never felt it before.”
vs. David Diaz, June 28, 2008
At the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, Pacquiao won his fourth world championship in as many weight classes by stopping WBC lightweight champion Diaz in the ninth round.
Diaz, an American, was unable to deal with Pacquiao’s quickness and was knocked out with his face soaking with blood.
Pacquiao, who unleashed 788 punches to Diaz’s 463 in his lightweight debut, stated, “I feel much, much stronger and more powerful at 135 pounds.”
Pacquiao made history by being the first Asian boxer to win world titles in four weight divisions.
vs. Miguel Cotto, Nov. 14, 2009
By overcoming Cotto’s resistance in the last round for the WBO welterweight championship, Pacquiao won his seventh title in a seventh weight class.
The Filipino sensation not only won another world championship, but he also scored an astounding victory, with many now considering him to be boxing’s best pound-for-pound fighter.
In the second part of the bout at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Cotto, a naturally larger boxer who had been campaigning as a welterweight for three years, was overpowered.
Pacquiao was too fast in his debut welterweight bout, six months after separating Ricky Hatton from his senses at junior welterweight, and demonstrated he could absorb a blow at 147 pounds.
Pacquiao, at 30 years old, knocked out Cotto in the third and fourth rounds before forcing a stoppage in the final round.
Cotto remarked, “I didn’t know where the blows were coming from.”
vs. Juan Manuel Marquez IV, Dec. 8, 2012
When Marquez knocked Pacquaio out in their fourth fight, Pacquaio’s aura of invincibility was broken.
Following his victory against Cotto, Pacquiao continued to amaze with victories over Joshua Clottey, Antonio Margarito (for his eighth championship in as many weight divisions), and Shane Mosley.
Pacquiao won a majority decision against Marquez in a tight 2011 bout, and when his seven-year winning run was ended by a split-points loss to Tim Bradley in June 2012, the points decision was heavily criticized.
However, Marquez, 39, guaranteed that the winner of their dramatic fourth meeting was clear.
Before the thrilling climax, Pacquiao was knocked down twice in the third round, while Mexican Marquez was knocked down once in the fifth. Following a failed punch that put Pacquiao face-first to the mat, Marquez unleashed a seismic overhand right.
“I was irresponsible. He’s not an easy opponent, to say the least “said Pacquiao.
With Marquez’s spectacular performance, Pacquiao now leads the series 2-1, with one tie.
vs. Floyd Mayweather, May 2, 2015
The fight to determine boxing’s pound-for-pound No. 1 was supposed to be the one we’d all been waiting for, but it never lived up to the hype.
Pacquiao was limited by a pre-fight injury to his right shoulder, which he received during the world’s wealthiest battle, which lasted almost five years.
Pacquiao’s boxing immortality was already secured, but his fitness was a question mark heading into the match. At the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Mayweather won a unanimous decision for the WBC, WBA, and WBO world welterweight crowns.
Mayweather was able to claim the title of undisputed pound-for-pound king of his — and Pacquiao’s — era when the bout grossed a record $500 million.
vs. Jeff Horn, July 2, 2017
Okay, so this wasn’t Pacman’s best performance, but it’s significant in terms of demonstrating the eight-weight world champion’s diminishing abilities.
The unanimous points decision in favour of Australian Horn (117-111, 115-113, and 115-113) was criticized, although Pacquiao seemed a shell of his dazzling best. At Brisbane’s Lang Park in Australia, he lacked the speed and sharpness of prior years.
Horn won the WBO world welterweight belt from Pacquiao, who took a year off after a sluggish start.
vs. Keith Thurman, July 20, 2019
With a decision win against Keith Thurman in July 2019, Manny Pacquiao has resurrected his career.
But this incredible boxer didn’t stop there; in 2018, he stopped Lucas Matthysse for the WBA “regular” welterweight belt, his first stoppage victory in seven years.
Pacquiao had his final hurrah against Keith Thurman, who was 10 years younger than him at 30 years old, after outpointing a tired Adrien Broner.
Pacquiao got off to a fast start, knocking out Thurman in the opening round and winning a split decision to become boxing’s oldest world champion (he won the WBA “super” welterweight world title from Thurman).
Thurman had the height, reach, and age advantage, but he was knocked out in the opening round with less than a minute to go, and Pacquiao proceeded to dominate with speed and power that belied his age. It was yet another major victory in Pacquiao’s fairytale career, and it was a resounding denial of those who claimed he was on the decline.
vs. Yordenis Ugas, Aug. 21, 2021
Yordenis Ugas unanimously defeated Manny Pacquiao with scores of 115-113, 116-112, and 116-112, convincing the Filipino senator that it was time to devote his whole attention to his political career.
Pacquiao’s WBA championship was withdrawn from him due to inactivity, although Ugas of Cuba kept it. Ugas was a last-minute substitute for Errol Spence Jr., the WBC and IBF champion, who had to withdraw due to an eye injury. He fought Pacquiao with 11 days’ notice.
After a two-year hiatus, Pacquiao had no complaints about the result at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, thanks to Ugas’ accuracy.
“I gave it my all tonight,” Pacquiao remarked, “but it wasn’t enough.” “There are no justifications. I wanted to battle for the championship in the ring, and the champion tonight is Ugas.”