Juan Manuel Marquez has once again said that he has no intention to face Manny Pacquiao for a fifth time, even though Pacquiao, trainer Freddie Roach, and promoter Bob Arum have all expressed keen interest in making that fight a reality. Marquez already turned down bigger money to face Pacquiao again this year, instead opting to face Timothy Bradley -- who also at least put off his own second fight with Manny to instead face Marquez.
"I'd rather stay with the memory of that 'lucky punch' that I connected on Pacquiao. It's about pride and honor, not money. That's why in that contest there was no championship at stake, only the WBO's Champion of The Decade belt. There are no plans [to fight after Bradley]. We'll leave this commitment first, and then see. First I want to see how I feel and if I plan continue with my career."
Marquez (55-6-1, 40 KO) really seems truly content to end the Pacquiao portion of his career with the knockout of 2012. It seems a genuinely dead issue to him. He's OK with being officially 1-2-1 and feeling that his KO proved he's the better fighter, rather than Pacquiao's two disputed victories and their draw in 2004. This may be a debate that just goes on forever. Who was better? The answer might be that neither of them were better than the other man. They may have been the most evenly matched rivals ever. There was barely anything between them in four fights. One great right hand from Marquez in the fourth fight, a few knockdowns against Marquez in the earlier fights. Their talents dovetailed beautifully. Maybe it's best we leave it there, and have the conversation forever.