HOYA: I TRAINED FOR 'KING KONG'
LAS VEGAS, DECEMBER 5, 2008 (STAR) By Abac Cordero - Oscar dela Hoya, left, and Manny Pacquiao meet anew to hype up their showdown at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. AP LAS VEGAS – There’s no greater motivation for Oscar dela Hoya than Manny Pacquiao himself.
Not his family or his team, not everything that’s been said and done.
“We don’t have to thrash talk or talk about each other that I’ll do this to you and I’ll do that to you,” said Dela Hoya during Wednesday’s final press conference for his Dec. 6 “Dream Match” with the warrior from the Philippines.
As the packed crowd at the Hollywood Theater of the MGM Grand listened, Dela Hoya, taller at 5’10 but older at 35, talked about Pacquiao being his greatest motivation.
“My motivation has been his skill, my motivation has been his youth, his speed, his power. My motivation has been his relentlessness inside the ring,” he said as Pacquiao and his trainer Freddie Roach sat a few feet to his left.
“That drove me to the gym to wake up every morning. And feel no pain. That’s why I’m looking forward to this fight,” boxing’s Golden Boy said.
He likened Team Pacquiao to a production company or a movie outfit trying to win the Oscar.
“Well, it’s when you want to win an Oscar, you’ll do whatever you can to win an Oscar. That’s what they’ve done. They jumped up two weight classes and their looking for that Oscar. On Dec. 6, they either leave home empty-handed or they take the trophy,” he added.
Pacquiao, giving up four inches in height and almost five years in experience, is relying on his speed and power, hoping that he could carry them both as he jumps two weight classes higher.
Only last June, Pacquiao made his debut at 135 pounds, and brought down David Diaz. Without defending the lightweight crown he found himself ranged against Dela Hoya in a fight pegged at 147 pounds.
“Many Pacquiao is a fighter,” said Dela Hoya who had predicted a fifth round stoppage of the Pinoy hero who has won his last eight fights, never losing again since dropping a bloody 12-round decision to Erik Morales in 2005 at the MGM.
“I would be disappointed if I don’t stop him because this type of fight calls for a knockout. This type of fight, you get two fighters who are going to fight. My strategy for the fight is going to be determined once I come out of my dressing room.
“But you’ll never know. If Manny Pacquiao hits me with a good shot, hey, let’s fight. I’m going to bite into my mouthpiece and let’s fight. That’s the beauty of working with a great trainer (Nacho Beristain) and a good strategist (Angelo Dundee).
“We can either box, we can either brawl or we can even counter-punch him. It’s not a matter of choosing our style a week before. It’s a matter of how I feel. I trained for King Kong. On Saturday night, let’s see what happens,” he said.
Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi
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