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Pacquiao vs Marquez IV: Freddie Roach working on new game plan, fears fight going to decision

Freddie Roach says he doesn't want Manny Pacquiao's fourth fight with Juan Manuel Marquez going to the judges, and he'll devise a new game plan for the bout.

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

Hall of Fame trainer Freddie Roach hasn't had the best year of his career in 2012, and he's worried about Manny Pacquiao's December 8 fight with Juan Manuel Marquez, saying that he's concerned about the fight going to the cards, fearing that judges may use past matchups between the two -- where there has been criticism of the scoring against Marquez -- as a way to lean toward Marquez no matter what.

"I've had three chances to come up with the strategy and the style to beat this guy and we haven't done well in any of them and the last one was the worst. Marquez put the muscle on and he kind of landed the power shots in that fight. And a lot of people thought we lost that fight. ... To be pound-for-pound the best fighter in the world, I think we need to knock this guy out. I don't think we'll win a decision regardless of how the fight goes."

Indeed, it seemed the majority of viewers last November felt that Marquez deserved the win over Pacquiao when they met for a third time.

Roach's three major fighters this year -- Pacquiao, Amir Khan, and Julio Cesar Chavez Jr -- have all lost. Pacquiao was on the bad end of an exceptionally controversial decision in June against Timothy Bradley, Khan was stopped in four by Danny Garcia in July, and Chavez Jr was just outclassed by Sergio Martinez this past Saturday.

[ Pacquiao vs Marquez IV: Ticket Information For 12/8 Fight ]

Recently, Khan and Roach parted ways in what has been a publicly amicable split. It's hard to blame Roach for the decision in the Pacquiao-Bradley fight, and frankly hard to blame him for what Sergio did to Chavez Jr, and even hard to blame him for Khan fighting carelessly and getting knocked loopy by Garcia, but without question it's been a difficult year for Roach professionally, and no matter how you slice it, it's impossible to say he's had the level of success he's accustomed to in 2012.

Roach also says he's going to "throw those game plans out the window" from the previous Marquez bouts. He's said recently that he still feels the plans were right, but they didn't work, and he knows there needs to be a change.

Pacquiao says he's going to be more aggressive, as he feels as though he held back too much last year. For his part, Marquez also says he'll be going for the KO.

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