After such an unsatisfying end to their first bout (watch it here) on May 8, 2004, a rematch between boxing superstars Manny Pacquiao and Juan Manuel Marquez simply had to happen.
And while it took four years and a rise in weight to 130 pounds, the two met once again at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, Nevada, on March 15, 2008.
As part of our continued coverage of their upcoming fourth showdown this weekend (Sat., Dec. 8, 2012), MMAmania.com will taking a look back at their memorable rematch, which was scored a split decision for Pacquiao, four years later to determine if whether or not the ringside judges got it right.
Thankfully, HBO -- the pay-per-view (PPV) home of the upcoming prize fight -- has put all three of their fights on YouTube for free. In this, the second of three "Settling the Score" segments, we will look back at Pacquiao vs. Marquez 2, contested at super featherweight in March 2008.
Here we go:
Round One: Both men tentative in the early going. Pacquiao's lead straight comes out early, but it's a follow-up right that lands twice. Marquez lands a couple to the body inside. Manny with a straight to the guts. Pacquiao with a series of jabs, Marquez with a straight. Straight to the body from Manny, right hook upstairs. Best punch of the round, a right straight, connects for JMM. Pacquiao lands a series of shots upstairs and absorbs some to the body. Close round, but Pacquiao takes the early lead, 10-9.
Round Two: Pacquiao with a straight to the body, Marquez with a couple hooks downstairs. Body shot Marquez. Good counter right from the Mexican. Sneaky left hook from JMM. Pacquiao jab and glancing right hook. Both men tag one another in quick succession, Pacquiao may have slightly gotten the better of it. Clinch. Body blow by JMM after a series of Pacquiao jabs. Stiff left by Marquez at the end leads to a fantastic combo that turns Pacquiao's legs to jelly before the bell. 10-9 for the Mexican, 19-19.
Round Three: Jabs to start off. Manny reaches in to the body and narrowly avoids a left. Pacquiao with a left, then a pair of rights. Big right hand by Marquez and a left hook after. Pacquiao's straight connects. Clash of heads in close. Nice exchange in close, Manny connects with the big left hand. Another. Marquez tags him with a counter, but eats probably the best punch of the trilogy and falls to his seat. Marquez is inches from going down again at the bell, which keeps this from being 10-9 Pacquiao. 10-8 for the Filipino, 29-27 same.
Round Four: Solid right hand from Pacquiao after his left misses. Marquez with a short left downstairs. Marquez tags him as he comes in aggressively, leading to a heavy exchange of leather. Nice combination from Marquez prompts Pacquiao to wave him on and land a pair of lefts in response. Stiff straight and a big one-two by Pacquiao. Marquez erupts with a flurry that goes wide. Big left again, clinch. Lead left hook by JMM tags Pacquiao. Pac-Man digs to the body and answers a counter with a hook upstairs. Marquez uppercut barely whiffs. Another Pacquiao round, 39-36.
Round Five: Marquez with an early straight downstairs. Very tentative round from both early on. Marquez gets a counter and a lovely uppercut through Manny's guard. Manny's jab connects, but the left doesn't. Marquez lands a left and a counter right. Pacquiao connects with his left as Marquez circles away. Big right hand for JMM. Pacquiao with a left hand late, Marquez pursues with combinations to end the round. Better round for Marquez; 48-46 Pacquiao.
Round Six: Pacquiao narrowly misses with a clubbing left. Sneaky right by Marquez. Beautiful straight again off a Pacquiao right. Manny lands a hook of his own in a four-piece flurry, then snaps Juan's head back with a jab. Pacquiao with another solid right. Marquez stings his foe with that straight right and adds another in a counter combo. Pacquiao with a couple rights. Pacquiao slugs to the body as JMM moves in. Pacquiao body left met with a JMM right upstairs. Both land hard in the last ten seconds, JMM harder. Clear Marquez round in my book; 57-56 Pacquiao.
Round Seven: Good right hook by Manny is met by a straight right. Pacquiao jab, Marquez body shot. Slick counter combo from Marquez. Another body hook. Clash of heads and JMM is cut over his right eye. Big right by Manny and another. A firefight erupts in center ring with Manny coming out ahead. Right hand Marquez, Pacquiao answers. Pacquiao with another left right at the bell; 67-65 Pacquiao.
Round Eight: Marquez lands his right early, then catches Manny with lefts as he comes in. Thudding body blow backs Pacquiao up; Marquez lands another on the ropes for good measure. Another. Pacquiao is cut from the early action and he seems affected. JMM with a left upstairs and a three-piece combination. Marquez roughs Manny up against the ropes. Big one-two by Marquez and he tags Manny as he tries to respond. Brilliant right uppercut counter. Manny touches the body with his left, but this was complete domination by the Mexican. 76-75 Pacquiao.
Round Nine: Lead left hook for JMM. Pacquiao connect with a right at the end of a three-punch flurry. Marquez with a left to the body., Clubbing shots by Manny in close. Stiff right jab from Pacquiao, another body shot by JMM. Stiff right for the Mexican and another. Big left from Pacquiao, his best punch of the last two rounds. Big exchange. Pacquiao lands to the body, but eats a left for his trouble. Pacquiao's right connects, as does Marquez's left downstairs. New cut on Marquez. Big lefts by Manny late seal the round for him; damn close, but I like Pacquiao's late work just a hair better than Marquez's early work. 86-84 Pacquiao.
Round Ten: Solid straight from JMM off a Pacquiao jab. Sneaky right hook from Manny, then an enormous counter left that wobbles Marquez badly. Pacquiao on the attack and lands a series of hard shots against the ropes before JMM circles into the center of the ring. Straights connect for both. Another big left from Manny, this one also a counter. Marquez to the body inside. Again. Another big left by Manny and a right hook inside. Marquez's right lands. Manny with a right hook in close. Marquez digs to the body and whiffs an uppercut. There's the right straight. Another. Pacquiao one-two ends the round strongly for him. 96-93 Pacquiao.
Round Eleven: That is an ugly-ass cut over JMM's eye. Marquez right strays low. Nobody connecting clean in the first minute. Marquez tags him low and high with the right. Big 3-2 from Marquez and a lovely three-hit combo. Marquez to the body. Once again, then upstairs. There's Manny's left. Another great counter by the Mexican. Good Pacquiao right. Another good left from Manny; Pacquiao ended the round strong, by Marquez did a lot of good work. 105-103 Pacquiao.
Round Twelve: Nice combination by Marquez and his right connects. Manny presses forward with no success. Body hook and uppercut by the Mexican. Good jab. Manny backs JMM up but can't land. Solid left uppercut kicks off another solid combination. Both connect well. Marquez left hook makes Manny stutter-step. Manny right. Pacquiao connects but gets blasted with rights. Lead left straight from the Filipino. Both land their power hands to end the fight. Damn fine effort from JMM and he took the round, but too late. 114-113 Pacquiao.
The final scores are 115-112 Marquez, 115-112 Pacquiao, and 114-113 Pacquiao. All of these are fair scores and, as a result, I have no beef with them at all.
Should Marquez have finally gotten his win the third time out?
Stop by for "Settling the Score, Part 3" tomorrow night to find out. Same time, same place.