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Freddie Roach anxious to get Manny Pacquiao to Los Angeles

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Scott Christ is the managing editor of Bad Left Hook and has been covering boxing for SB Nation since 2006.

Maybe it's just talk. Maybe it's just talk to sell a fight. But word out of Manny Pacquiao's camp isn't exactly sparkling right now.

Promoter Bob Arum said recently that if the fight with Antonio Margarito were on Saturday, Margarito would win. Arum believes Pacquiao isn't up to his usual level, or at least so he says. And while Philstar.com's headline is "Roach: No worry, Manny will be ready," there is plenty of worry in Roach's quotes.

The trainer is seemingly worried about the level of sparring that Pacquiao has had thus far against Michael Medina and Glen Tapia, saying Pacquiao is going about "50 percent" in sparring and that his speed isn't there yet. Roach is eager to get to Los Angeles where he will have Amir Khan and Vanes Martirosyan, among others, available to spar Pacquiao.

Road work has also been an issue so far, as Baguio City has been hit by Typhoon Megi, hampering Pacquiao's ability to get crucial work done out of the gym. The team has left Baguio for Manila, and on Saturday will be heading to Los Angeles.

Meanwhile, Antonio Margarito is promising that Manny Pacquiao will take a beating, and has strong words for the fighter and his trainer. Margarito and trainer Robert Garcia believe that the uppercut will be key for them, and Margarito feels Pacquiao won't be able to hurt him. It is unlikely that the 154 and 160-pound fighters Margarito is currently sparring are near Pacquiao's level, but confidence is probably a good thing for Margarito at this point, and certainly can't hurt his chances.

Three weeks out of the fight, how are you feeling about the matchup now? And I mean strictly as a fight -- we all know Margarito's baggage and the disappointment over the Mayweather fight still not happening, so no need to re-hash all that. Do you think Margarito's prospects have improved, even though he opened as a 5-to-1 underdog? Is there a real chance that Pacquiao has become, as they say in some parts of the States, "too big for his britches"?

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