Team Pacquiao: Alex Ariza Wants Marquez, Not "Quitter" Mosley

Shane Mosley was called a quitter by Manny Pacquiao strength coach Alex Ariza. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

Alex Ariza, the famed strength and conditioning coach of Manny Pacquiao, says he would like to see Manny fight Juan Manuel Marquez a third time, and forget about Shane Mosley. Ariza also called Mosley a "quitter" when talking to the Philippine Star (link via BoxingScene.com):

"Mosley? He’ll be tired after 15 minutes so what’s the point of that fight? Manny knocks him out and probably, Manny won’t even train for that fight. That guy is a quitter. He quit against Mayweather in three rounds. ... [I like Marquez] because he’s got balls. He’s got heart. And he’s stupid enough to think he can beat Manny. So that’s a great fight."

I know Alex Ariza is a very important piece of the Pacquiao team, and has done some great things helping Pacquiao prepare for his big fights. But Ariza is a strength coach. Does it seem odd to anyone else that he'd speak up like this and call out Shane Mosley, who is going to the Hall of Fame, and call him a "quitter"? Those are bold words that I might expect from another fighter, or in this case maybe from Freddie Roach, but Ariza? I don't think he's even wrong about what the fight might look like, though I also would say, just for the sake of argument, that Mosley would make more of an attempt to fight back than Ariza seems to expect, at least early on.

As for Marquez, yes, he is still desperately chasing the fight. But he doesn't expect it will happen:

"I see that it’s more and more unlikely that a third fight between me and him will happen. He definitely doesn’t want anything to do with me because I’m the one who made him suffer."

And speaking of Freddie Roach, he offered this quote, which is not quite true, to be fair:

"We’re not going to fight below 147. ... Manny has fought a perfect six fights in a row at this weight (147 pounds) and looked tremendously well at this class because he’s not killing himself to make the weight."

To nitpick -- or just be right -- Manny has fought two fights with a 147-pound limit (Clottey and Oscar), and one at 150 (Margarito). He fought Hatton at 140 and looked sensational, fought Miguel Cotto at 145, and I honestly have no idea what sixth fight he's talking about at 147, because there haven't even been six fights since his one-fight stint at lightweight.

Truth be told, if they're going to do Pacquiao-Marquez III, making it a 147-pound limit is just plain cheap from the Pacquiao camp. There is not a single question that he can get down to 140, where Marquez will still be at a disadvantage. Setting it for 147 is just plain completely stacking the deck against Marquez, who is older, more worn out, and has proven his inadequacy fighting over 135 the one time he tried to do it.

Of course, Marquez still has business with Michael Katsidis on November 27, so let's not look past that. But if he wins, I think I'm sort of warming to the fight. I think Marquez might actually throw a kick at him if he gets the chance at this point.

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