A new little wrinkle from Saturday's Pacquaio vs Marquez fight started circulating around the internet last night, and was posted to the Bad Left Hook Facebook page (by the way, if you don't "like" us on Facebook, go do that). I found it interesting, but not because I'm outraged by the discovery. It's just an extra note.
Did Marquez step on Manny Pacquiao's feet to gain an advantage in the fight? Here's the snapshot compilation from our Facebook page:
After the jump, a video and more.
Real quick: Unless you like to laugh, turn the sound off. It's so dramatic.
Now here's the first thing: This happens all the time when southpaws and orthodox fighters square off. Folks who watch a lot of boxing know that for sure. The people who are having a fit over this strike me as the sort of people who are dying for some big excuse, for some reason to say Marquez cheated.
But this happens. All. The. Time.
Now, that said, did Marquez do it on purpose? Maybe. If he did, it certainly wouldn't be any surprise, nor do I think it's something that a 16-year veteran fighter shouldn't know how to handle. And it's certainly something Freddie Roach, a terrific veteran trainer, should have pointed out if he noticed it and felt Marquez was stomping Manny's feet on purpose or gaining some great advantage from it. But that's not the case. It's just something that happens.
In a really great breakdown of Marquez's technical superiority, Lee Payton wrote this yesterday:
With their experience, Nacho Beristain and his fighter noticed that you can keep the Filipino's devastating left hand in its holster much of the time simply by stepping in the opposite direction. The old technician brilliantly maneuvered his back foot clockwise all night, which kept him out of position to taste Manny's best punch. By turning to his left steadily, he made Pacquiao adjust his own feet constantly in search of a better angle to land a bomb.
Using superior footwork he was able to take Manny's best punch away from him for much of the fight, and since he wasn't standing straight up, or still, there was no danger of being overwhelmed by a storm. In the corner, Team Pacquiao were telling their man to cut the ring off by moving to his own right, which would disrupt what Marquez was trying to do, but instead he fell into the trap by following the matador in a circle. He helped Marquez take his best weapon out of the picture, for the most part. Without a clear home for his best punch Pacquiao was brought down to an activity level that is easier to handle.
You can freeze-frame this very common occurrence all you want, but it's been three fights, and Juan Manuel Marquez has Manny's number every time out. And the other point that has to be made here: This doesn't help Marquez as much as you might think. He doesn't get proper leverage without the ability to push off, and stepping on top of Manny's foot isn't exactly helping Marquez's balance either. It's not like stepping forward onto the flat surface of the canvas.
Did Marquez do it on purpose? Hey, maybe he did. But if he did, it's not the reason he did so well in the fight, and frankly isn't one of the top ten reasons.