Don’t follow boxing very often, but you want to know the gist of Saturday’s fight between Manny Pacquiao and Antonio Margarito? Follow boxing all the time, and want one place that rounds up all the links about the junior middleweight showdown you could ever want? This Ultimate Guide to the Nov. 13 pay-per-view bout is for you, no matter what kind you are.
First, stuff from this site: an examination of the controversy over boycotting the bout, related to Margarito getting caught two fights ago with loaded gloves; a consideration of the stakes of the bout; an evaluation of how both men stack up, physically and mentally; a look at the undercard; video of the controversial Margarito camp mockery of Pacquiao trainer Freddie Roach’s Parkinson’s; and the final preview and prediction.
Elsewhere, I participated in a boxing blogger roundtable on Pacquiao-Margarito at The Boxing Bulletin, and I expect something I wrote in a prediction round-up for Fight Game Blog to appear soon enough on that site. To a lesser extent, the piece I wrote on Paul Williams-Sergio Martinez II at The Sweet Science touches on Pacquiao-Margarito.
If you have less than 10 minutes to spare each, these below videos tell large swaths of the tale of the careers of Pacquiao and Margarito. But their career records — Pacquiao here, Margarito here — are more exhaustive. If you want to catch up with their stories outside the ring, HBO 24/7 is good. All of them are running on HBO tonight starting at 8 p.m. ET, capped by the final episode.
If you’re buying the fight on pay-per-view — $55 for standard, $65 for high-def — don’t forget you can get $25 back from Tecate.
For the weigh-in at around 5:45 or 6 p.m. ET today, visit Top Rank Live Stream, or, alternately, ESPN. Apparently it’ll air live on an ESPN channel, too. Worth watching: How much below 150 pounds will Pacquiao weigh, and will Margarito look weakened from struggling to make weight?
The mainstream media’s take? ESPN has its usual Fight Credential. USA Today has multiple recent pieces. The Wall Street Journal has also done multiple pieces. New York Times, a couple. 60 Minutes had a feature. I’d said I thought the coverage would be pretty negative, but judging from those stories, Margarito might have escaped largely unscathed had his camp not gotten caught mocking Roach’s disease.
Lastly: Any predictions out there of how well the fight will do, business-wise? Top Rank’s Bob Arum is saying 70,000 live, 1.3 million pay-per-view buys. I think it’s probably more like 60,000 and 1.2 million, but for once Arum probably isn’t overselling. Margarito’s Mexican fan base, 24/7, Pacquiao’s growing profile… I think more than 1 million, for sure.