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From the ashes or into the flames?
Nearly one year removed from his stunning knockout loss at the hands of Juan Manuel Marquez, one of boxing's top superstars, Manny Pacquiao, will enter the ring once again tonight (Sat., Nov. 23, 2013) at The Venetian in Macau, China, looking to snap a career-first two-fight losing streak.
Brandon Rios, himself intent on rebounding from his first-ever defeat, is standing in his way in a bid for the vacant WBO International Welterweight title.
MMAmania will have LIVE coverage of "Pacquiao vs. Rios" later this evening, starting with the HBO PPV at 9 p.m. ET.
In addition to the main event, 2008 and 2012 Olympic gold medalist Zou Shiming will make his third professional appearance, taking on Juan Tozcano in front of the former's hometown crowd. Plus, the IBF Featherweight title will be on the line in a rematch between Billy Dib and Evgeny Gradovich, who defeated Dib earlier this year to claim the belt.
And undefeated Heavyweight prospect Andy Ruiz, Jr. will test his mettle against former prospect Tor Hamer.
"PACQUIAO VS. RIOS" QUICK RESULTS:
Welterweight: Manny Pacquiao def. Brandon Rios by unanimous decision (120-108, 119-109, 118-110)
Featherweight: Evgeny Gradovich def. Billy Dib by TKO at 1:10 of Round Nine.
Heavyweight: Andy Ruiz, Jr. def. Tor Hamer by TKO (Retirement) at 3:00 of Round Three
Flyweight: Zou Shiming def. Juan Tozcano by unanimous decision (60-54 x2, 60-52)
Lightweight: Felix Verdejo def. Petchsamuthr Duanaaymukdahan by unanimous decision (60-53 x3)
"PACQUIAO VS. RIOS" PLAY-BY-PLAY RESULTS:
Manny Pacquiao vs. Brandon Rios
Round one: Rios nine pounds bigger and looks it.
Rios pawing with the jab, takes a left straight to the gut. Tentative pawing in center ring, Manny clips him with the left straight. Right to he body from Manny. Rios avoids a left. Manny jams another straight to the body. Manny leads with the left and connects. Rios mostly just jabbing. Manny catches Rios ducking with a left hand and forces him to slip. Double lefts to the head. Rios lands some hard right hands in the clinch. Good counter left by Manny, then a pair of body shots to end the round. 10-9 Pacquiao.
Round two: Lead left from Manny. Good body shots. More lefts up top, Rios answers with two to the body. Rios lands more shots inside. Clinch. Hard lead left by Manny, right to the body. Rios tries to pursue, gets tied up. Rios throws wide shots, glancing for the most part. Another clinch. Good four-shot combo by Manny and a hard left uppercut. Another powerful combo from Pacquiao. Clinch. Rios with a right hand. Rios to the body and head. Nice lead left by Manny and a series of shots to the body and head. Good end to the round for Manny, 20-18.
Round three: Rios bullrushes Manny, lands a few body shots. Manny sneaks a left straight through. Body shot by Pacquiao. Left exchange, then a straight from Manny through the guard. Clubbing right from Rios. Manny circling well. good jab and left hook from Rios. Rios clubbing in the clinch. Manny bouncing lefts off Rios' guard, lands a right to the body. Clinch. Nice uppercut and overhand by Rios met by a Pacquiao left. Rios lands to the body. Rios uppercut, Manny right hook. Rios tags the body to end the round. 29-28 Pacquiao.
Round four: Good right by Rios. Good right hook by Manny, then a left straight. Solid three-punch sequence and body shot by Manny. Stiff jab. Right hook by Manny. Clinch. Rios lands some short blows. Right hand from Brandon. Stiff jab by Rios, Manny answers. Good body shot from Manny. Nice lead left. Right hook lands, then another on the counter. Nice lefts from Manny; he's doing a solid job circling out of Rios' range. Good right from Rios. Clinch, Manny right hook on the exit. Good lefts to end the round. 39-37 Pacquiao.
Round five: Both men swinging with no clean connections early. Clinch. BIG lead left by Manny has Brandon sticking his tongueout. Rios to the body. Good body blow by Manny, then a powerful four-piece combination upstairs. Jab exchange. Rios moving forward behind the jab, gets tied up. Rios digging on the clinch, takes an uppercut as Manny exits. Manny's combinations now landing with regularity. They clinch, Rios again tags the body. Nice body blow by Manny and he slams Rios' head side-to-side upstairs. Terrific round for Pacquiao; 49-46 same.
Round six: Rios's jab is more active lately. Manny lands another lead left, Rios barrels in with short body shots. Rios lands a left downstairs and both land glancing blows with their power hands. Solid lefts by Manny as they enter the clinch. Manny keeping off the ropes well. Rios's blows hitting shoulder. Both men tag the body. Manny rips a big left to the gut in a high-low combinatinon. Nice lead left. Another left. Good overhand right from Rios, Manny forces him to retreat. NICE combo from Manny. Solid right hook; Rios's left eye is showing damage. Clinch. Rios left hook lands. Still all Manny, 59-55.
Round seven: Manny lands a good 2-1 on Brandon, stangs the body when Brandon flurries. Brandon lands a clean hook, then gets whacked with two left hooks. Left hand connects. Nice body shots by Manny. Lead left stops Rios in his tracks. Four-shot combination lands. Rios chipping away in the clinch. Nice uppercut. Manny with a hard one-two met by an overhand. Rios gets Manny to the ropes, lands a couple body shots. Clinch. Right downstairs by Manny, left follows. Good right hook from Pacquiao. Rios needs something big very soon. 69-64 Pacquiao.
Round eight: Limited action in the first thirty seconds. Rios lands to the body as Manny avoids the clinch. Two lefts downstairs by Manny when Rios tries to force him against the ropes. Rios lands some short blows, Manny's right hook gets through. Rios chiseling in the clinch with his right. Three-piece sequence from Manny. Body shots from Manny. Rios with a stiff jab and a goot overhand right. Manny gets a left hook around Brandon's guard. Right uppercut. Rios with some glancing blows inside, takes a right hook. Rios with a long right.Double left from Manny and a three-shot sequence. Rios owned the beginning of the round, Manny the end. 78-74 Pacquiao.
Round nine: One-two from Pac-man. Big left sneaks through. Stiff jab from Brandon. Clinch. Right hand from Brandon. Nice combination from Pacquiao. Lead right hand, then one to the body. Left uppercut lands for Pac-Man. Rios with a right tot he body answered with a hard Pacquiao left. Good jab from Manny, roughhousing in the clinch from Brandon. Solid right form Brandon met by a 2-1 from Pacquiao. Rios takes a right hook. Solid left by Manny, then a three-punch sequence. Rios overhand, Manny left to he body. Nice three-shot combination from Manny, Rios answers with a right. Manny clocks him again with a left and right. Rios needs the knockout at this point. 88-83 Pacquiao.
Round ten: Rios showing damage around both eyes. Solid right hand coutner from Manny. Rios working the jab, connects on a left to the body and right upstairs. Ref warns Brandon for low blows. Manny bounces a three-shot combo off Brandon's guard. The next combination gets through and does damage. Manny with a right to the body, then one to the head. They trade lefts. Big shots from Manny, including a right hook to the body. Lead left for Manny. Right hook knocks some sweat off of Rios. Clinch, short blows by Brandon. Something dramatic has to happen for Brandon and it has to happen now. 98-92 Pacquiao.
Round eleven: Right hook for Manny. Another right hook. Two hard lefts. Stiff jab from Manny. Lead left lands through the guard, then a three-shot combination. Clinch. Manny with a right hook to the body. Another combination to the head .Rios with some short body shots and a good left hook. Nice right from Rios. Counter right by Pacquiao, Rios answers with a hard jab. BIG one-two by Pacquiao. Big right hand. They stare at each other for the last twenty seconds. 108-101 Pacquiao.
Round twelve: Right hook for Manny as he circles out. 3-2 for Manny glances off. NICE one-two for Manny. Left slips through the guard. Manny forces Brandon back with a right hook. Combination rattles Rios' head. Manny running circles around Brandon, whose output has dropped. Yet another combination blasts Rios. Right hook. Right hook again and a left on the exit. Again Manny snaps Brandon's head back. Brandon can't handle the footwork and the round ends with him having done almost no damage. 118-110 Pacquiao.
Final Result: Pacquiao def. Rios by decision
Evgeny Gradovich vs. Billy Dib
Round one: Gradovich is a scary-looking dude.
Gradovich pressing forward. Dib lands a right hand as Evgeny steps in. Gradovich with a one-two. Overhand right connects for Evgeny. Dib jabs the body, takes an overhand right. Counter right hook from Dib.Clinch. Another clinch. ANOTHER clinch. Nice right hand by Gradovich after taking a left hook. Dib jabs to the body,takes another right from Gradovich. Gradovich walking him down into the ropes with overhands. Dib lands a counter right to end the round. 10-9 Gradovich.
Round two: Gradovich with some clubbing blows inside. Dib jabs the body, Gradovich sneaks in a right downstairs. Dib with some wide hooks. Gradovich left hook inside. Dib with the double jab. Gradovich lands a pair of right, one inside. 3-2 off the top of Dib's head. Evgeny with a right and left. Two lefts by Grado, Dib backs him off the w right. Dib lands a hard left hook. Grado on the offensive, Dib staying out of trouble. Gradovich lands an overhand right as he enters the clinch. Gradovich's fight so far, 20-18.
Round three: Grado chisels in the clinch. Good exchange in the middle, with Grado doing better. Left hand met by a Dib counter. Grado smacks Dib with a right hand. Clinch. Good left hand as Dib retreats, then some glancing blows inside. Clinch; Dib lands close blows. Grado backs Dib to the ropes and they trade. Dib hits on the break, gets warned. Nice jab from Grado, Dib with one of his own. Dib hits Grado with a right hook as he approaches. Counter left hook. Grado with some wide shots, the left connects. Dib digs to the body. Grado firing away with Dib on the ropes with mixed success. Left hook lands, Dib answers in kind. 30-27 Gradovich.
Round four: Clinch early. Dib forgot his mouthpiece, apparently, so he goes to his corner to fix that. Rough clinch, both men land. Gradovich's overhand right sems the better blow. Dib steps in with a wide right of his own. Two body shots by Gradovich, then another rough clinch. Dib uppercut as he moves off the ropes. Dib backs Gradovich up with hard shots, then takes a pair of overhand rights. Dib digs the body, Gradovich sneaks some overhand rights through. Good work inside from both men. Gradovich still coming out on top but by a narrow margin. Dib backed to the ropes, punches his way out. Gradovich with short blows. Clinch. Grado lands a pair of short left hooks. Dib goes low, lands a left hook, takes a left hook. Gradovich enters the clinch with a right. Dib with a couple body shots before the bell. 40-36 Gradovich.
Round five: Mugging inside, Gradovich knocks Dib's mouthpiece out with a left hook. Dib firing his jab, they swing inside. Grado exits with a good uppercut. Dib with a right hook downstairs. More inside work, Dib finding success. Body shots from both. Grado with a short flurry, Dib responds in kind. Good shots from both. Good body shot from Dib. Grado right hand over the top, clinch. Dib baked into the ropes, Grado looking to capitalize. Solid body shot. Dib lands a left hook. Two big right hands from Gradovich. More mugging to end the round. 50-45 Gradovich, but the last two have been close.
Round six: Grado steps in with a left-right, stings him with a left hook. Gradovich sneaking good shots around Dib's guard. Dib with a right hand, clinch. Solid left hook from Grado, then the clinch. Lead left hook. Dib answers. Stiff jabs by both. Clinch. GOOD right hand from Gradovich puts Dib on his knee; he's up quickly, though, and takes the eight count. Gradovich working Dib in the corner after the restart. Another right hand. Lead left hook wobbles Dib yet again. Clinch. Bell, 60-53 Gradovich.
Round seven: Gradovich continues to advance. Another right hand gets through. Stiff jab. Another right hand and another. Lead left hook. Two big right hands, then a left hook. Gradovich buffeting a retreating Dib, who clinches. Another clinch. Body shot from Gradovich, then a series of right uppercuts. Overhand right. Dib tot he body in the clinch. Solid uppercut. Grado slips an overhand right and uppercut through the guard. One-two from the Russian. Nice right hand. Another. Dib steps in with a left hook. Gradovich lands one of his own. Straight right backs Dib up in the waning seconds. 70-62 Gradovich.
Round eight: Gradovich with a stiff jab. Steps in with a left. Hard right hand inside. Dib turned southpaw to start the round and lands a left hook. Gradovich knocks him back with a left-right. BIG lead left hook from Gradovich. Gradovich unloading on Dib in the corner but Billy manages to tie up. Left hook from Grado. Another. Clinch. Gradovich clubs him inside, takes a few body shots from Dib. Clinch. Gradovich with a one-one-two. Left-right by Gradovich, then some short body shots. All Evgeny. 80-71.
Round nine: Gradovich walking Dib down, lands an uppercut in the clinch. Hard right hand by Gradovich, low blow from Dib. Dib with a tight guard, Evgeny bounces some shots off of it. Gradovich starts slipping right hands through Dib's guard and Billy's corner wisely steps in. TKO win for Gradovich.
Final Result: Gradovich def. Dib by TKO
Andy Ruiz, Jr. vs. Tor Hamer
Round one: Hamer lands a right hand early. They rough each other up in the clinch briefly. They're exchanging in mid-ring, Ruiz momentarily stings Tor with an overhand right. One-two by Hamer. Clinch. Hamer to the head and body with the left . One-two by Ruiz lands, as do a couple big rights from Hamer. Another one-two by Hamer. Ruiz lands a jab and left hook. Hamer pokes the body. Hamer counters a right with a pair of hooks. Another solid right form Tor. To the body this time. Hamer slams the body with a left hook. 10-9 Hamer.
Round two: Counter right from Ruiz. Left exchange. Short body blow from Hamer. Roughhousing in the clinch. Stiff jab by Andy, Tor responds with hooks to the body and head. Tor's having success with straights to the body. Ruiz lands a solid pair of overhand blows. Hamer sneaks in some hooks before tying up. Hamer with a huge left hook and right hand. Hamer lands a hard body shot and takes a left hook. Hamer rattles Ruiz with two more hard head shots. Clearly Hamer's fight so far, 20-18.
Round three: Ruiz with a stiff jab, takes a right. Hamer landing to the body with ease so far. Ruiz clinching whenever Tor gets too close. Hamer right hand again connects before he is tied up. Ruiz slans an overhand right and left hook on the exit. Ruiz backs Tor to the ropes and lands a glancing left. Short right from Hamer. Ruiz left hook connects. Ruiz clips him with a right, then is himself hit by a right. Ruiz's left hook finding its range, he lands two in quick succession. Another hook lands. Uppercut, left hook, right hand; Hamer looks gassed. Ruiz with a pair of good body shots. Tor is imploding; 29-28 same.
Tor quits in the corner. Again.
Final Result: Ruiz def. Hamer by TKO
Zou Shiming vs. Juan Tozcano
Round one: Shiming moving his head well, avoiding Tozcano's slow punches. Good left hook by Zou. Overhand right connects for Shiming. Right connects yet again. Zou with a one-two-three. Uppercut lands. Right to the body. Zou's jab lands, as does a left hook. Overhand right rattles Tozcano. Zou's jab is working. Good series of one-twos. Zoe to the body, right up top. Tozcano has a mouse under his right eye, takes some straight punches. Tozcano lands a jab before the bell. 10-9 Shiming.
Round two: Tozacno whiffs on some punches. Counter right and left hook connect for Zou. Tozcano's jab lands, as does a left body shot. Another good body shot and a pair of overhands by Juan. Two good overhands connect for Zou, then a counter straight. Tozcano dross counter gets through. Short hooks by Juan, then an overhand and straight right by Shiming. Another right hand. Tozcano body blow. Right counter lands for Shiming, then they exchange right hands. TOzcano body blow. Shiming left hook. Tozcano has a three-piece blocked. Stiff left by Zou, stiff jab by Toscano. Body blow and overhand right. Shiming with his own sequence of head shots. Closer round. 20-18 Shiming.
Round three: Tozcano whiffs on long uppercuts. Shiming to the body, then a flurry up top. Good combination, body-head by Zou. One-two connects. Good right hand stuns Tozcano, Shiming pressing the advantage with hard shots. Tozcano firing back but getting backed up and battered. Shiming just walking forward and landing hard shots. Tozcano is connecting, but not as well. Zou taks an uppercut, steps in with a left hand. Four-piece combo lands. Counter hook. Tozcano hits the body. Ref pauses the fight based on a huge, ugly cut under Tozcano's right eye, but they continue. Good left by Shiming, Tozcano firing away and does connect with left and right hooks. All Shiming, 30-27.
Round four: Shiming takes a right, lands a better one of his own. Tozcano lands a body shot, takes an overhand, and bounces wide shots off of Zou's arm. Left uppercut clocks Tozcano. Lead left hook by Shiming. Tozcano to the body, Zou waves him on. Both land right hands. Counter left hook by Zou, body shot soon after. Tozcano with another body blow, takes a couple. Juan left hook to he head. They trade lefts. Tozcano right downstairs met by one up top. Juan right to he body, Shiming to the head. Zou pokes a few shots between the guard. Long right hand forces Tozcano back. Long right hand connects for Zou, right to the body for Tozcano. 40-36 Shiming.
Round five: Tozcano looking for straight rights. Right to the body by Tozcano. Zou backs him off with a right hand. Zou pokes the body, takes a right hand there. Jab exchange, Tozcano right hand. Counter right hand. Another counter right. BIG right hands from Shiming hurt Tozcano, but he's still standing. More big right hands but Juan stays standing. Shiming peppering with his jab this time. More right hands from Zou interspersed with a left hook to the head by Tozcano to end the round. 50-45.
Round six: Shiming walking his man down, blocking most of his punches. Another hard right hand, then a left hook. Tozcano connecting to the body but having no visible effect. Three-piece combo to the head. Big left by Zou. Zou just continues landing hard shots and walking through Tozcano's own shots. Tozcano has no answer and keeps on getting tagged. The referee needs to stop this. Tozcano winging tired punches and hitting air. BIG right by Shiming. Shiming wading forward with big head shots to end the round. Major beating from Zou, 60-54 same.
Final Result: Shiming def. Tozcano by decision
Felix Verdejo vs. Petchsamuthr Duanaaymukdahan
Round one: Apparently, there's one more fight on the PPV than I thought.
I am NOT writing that name twice. He's "Petch" now.
Peth moves forward with wide shots. Verdejo lands a pair of check left hooks as Petch advances. Verdejo lands an uppercut and left hook. They tie up and each pops the body. Good left hook from Felix, Petch lands a pair of body shots. Verdejo doubles up the left to the body. Now another. Petch lands up top, takes a right downstairs. Petch with another body blow and takes a pair of uppercuts. Stiff jab from Verdejo, body blow exchange. Verdejo rips a right hook to the ribs. Nice right up top, left to the body, right uppercut sequence. Peth responds to body shots with a couple of his own. Petch getting outclassed so far. 10-9 Verdejo
Round two: Verdejo lands a hard check hook. Peth's right eye looks busted up. Verdejo working behind the jab. Lead left hook connects, Petch tries to sneak one around his guard. Petch firing wild shots, takes a left hook in the midst. Verdejo rips the body. Petch clubbed with an overhand right; Verdejo tries to pounds, sneaks in a right uppercut, and gets tied up. Petch with a right downstairs, Verdejo with two of his own. Petch with a couple body blows. Verdejo's jab landing extremely well. Follows a left hook downstairs with a left uppercut. Petch continues marching forward with wide shots. Verdejo with a few more power shots in the last ten seconds. 20-18 Verdejo.
Round three: Verdejo circling with the jab, then nearly levels Petch with a right hook. Petch backed up to the ropes, Verdejo doesn't explode. He's still sticking his tongue out and waving Verdejo forward. Petch walking forward with body shots, but they lack anywhere near the sting of Verdejo's. Felix potshotting from the outside. Petch's right hand touches the beltline and the ref oddly calls it a low blow. Petch still moving forward, gets jacked with an uppercut in combination. Verdejo with two big left body shots. Petch is aggressive and playing to the crowd, but getting dominated. 30-27 Verdejo.
Round four: Petch still moving forward, still popping the body. Verdejo slams a left hook into Petch's jaw. A couple more counter hooks. Petch sneaks in a right hand upstairs. Two good body blows by Petch. Verdejo with a right around the guard. Nice left hand on the retreat. Petch with a couple body shots. More body blows inside. Verdejo with a great combination. Tenderizes the body once again. Left hook follows an uppercut. Uppercut is blocked. Both men tag the body in the waning seconds, but Verdejo's hits much harder. 40-36 Verdejo.
Round five: Verdejo circling, lands a left hook that sends out a clowd of sweat. Verdejo with another hook, then bludgeons Petch a few times on the ropes. Two body shots from Verdejo. Petch lands a pair of body blows, Verdejo digs one in himself after a right. Big body shot, Petch tries to answer. Petch strays "low," takes an overhand right. Nice lead right uppercut from Felix and a left hook. BIG uppercut rocks Petch. Verdejo landing hard shots but can't seem to get Petch out of there. Utter domination so far. 50-45 Verdejo.
Round six: Petch is still throwing but can't budge Felix. Good combination by Verdejo. Body combo by Petch. Verdejo bounces some shots off Petch's guard. Nice left uppercut, Petch responds with an overhand right and blocks the next flurry. Ref takes a point from Petch for a low blow. Verdejo unloading every time Petch gets close. Great lead right uppercut by Felix met by an overhand. Stiff jab lands. Left uppercut ends a combo. Verdejo unloads six or seven blows to the body and head, half of which get through. Verdejo rips the body with rights to end things. 60-53 Verdejo.
Final Result: Verdejo def. Duanaaymukdahan by decision