Pacquiao might be the best boxer of all time

Manny Pacquiao has certainly made his name in the world of professional boxing as being one of the sport’s very best (past and present), but based on his resume, he might just be ‘The Greatest’.

Surely, if Manny Pacquiao was a heavyweight he would be included in most boxing GOAT discussions.

Put aside his actual boxing skills for a moment and just take a look at Manny Pacquiao’s list of opponents. Besides now having over 70 professional bouts (67-7-2), the amount of stiff competition he faced throughout his career is remarkable.

Pacquiao’s first professional bout took place on January 22nd, 1995 at the Sablayan, in Mindoro Occidental, Philippines. He won in a 4 rd unanimous decision over Edmund Enting Ignacio. Since that time, Pacquiao has gone on to win another 62 fights (62-7-2).

When you take a close look at the competition he has faced in the 2nd half of his career, it is truly jaw dropping once you let it soak in.

After his loss to Erik Morales in 2005, Pacquiao went on to fight a host of fighters that were some of the best in the sport starting with a rematch against Morales.

Pacquiao won the second match against Morales and continued to fight the very best in his weight division(s) including the likes of (not in order of date) Erik Morales (one more time, their 3rd match), Marco Antonia Barrera (re-match), Juan Manuel Marquez (3 more times), Brandon Rios, Antonio Margarito, Timothy Bradley (3x), Floyd Mayweather Jr., Adrien Broner, Keith Thurman and Lucas Matthysse.

Pacquiao’s loss to Eric Morales was profound

In all, Pacquiao has fought 27 times since he defeated Morales in 2005. The first fight against Morales is significant because years afterwards Pacquiao talked about feeling the sting of the loss as if it was his first and vowed to never let it happen again.

Although he had lost two times already in his professional boxing career (2/9/96) & (9/17/99), Pacquiao’s loss against Morales was after he had become recognized in the sport as a great fighter. He was also a much more accomplished boxer versus at the start of his career.

So, even though Morales was a great boxer at the time, Pacquiao felt like he should have won the match. He confessed that the loss stung more than his previous two. It also remained with him for a long time afterwards when he stepped in the ring as a kind of reminder.

Manny Pacquiao vs Erik Morales II
Manny Pacquiao vs. Erik Morales II

The 27 boxers Pacquiao faced after the first Morales fight are listed below. Pacquiao went 23 – 4 in these bouts losing to only Floyd Mayweather Jr., Timothy Bradley*, Juan Marquez and Jeff Horn.

  1. Keith Thurman
  2. Adrien Broner
  3. Lucas Martin Matthysse
  4. Jeff Horn (L)
  5. Jessie Vargas
  6. Timothy Bradley Jr
  7. Floyd Mayweather Jr (L)
  8. Chris Algieri
  9. Timothy Bradley Jr
  10. Brandon Rios
  11. Juan Manuel Marquez (L)
  12. Timothy Bradley Jr (L)*
  13. Juan Manuel Marquez
  14. Shane Mosley
  15. Antonio Margarito
  16. Joshua Clottey
  17. Miguel Cotto
  18. Ricky Hatto
  19. Oscar De La Hoya
  20. David Diaz
  21. Juan Manuel Marquez
  22. Marco Antonio Barrera
  23. Jorge Solis
  24. Erik Morales
  25. Oscar Larios
  26. Erik Morales
  27. Hector Velazquez

*Pacquiao vs. Bradley I resulted in a highly controversial decision win for Timothy Bradley, however, it was clear to most that Pacquiao had won the match.

Summary

Manny Pacquiao’s list of opponents is second to none. He has taken on the very best in and around his weight class never dodging an opponent He even moved up in weight several times so he could fight some of the sport’s pound for pound best. Another thing of mention, Pacquiao fought some of these fighters multiple times including Juan Manual Marquez (4x), Eric Morales (3x) and Timothy Bradley (3x) and others. Something not seen much today. He has also won titles in eight different weight classes. An all-time record of course.

Is Manny Pacquiao the greatest boxer of all-time? Based on his resume, he just might be.