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Manny Pacquiao vs. Keith Thurman Preview

Manny Pacquiao (61-7-2) vs. Keith Thurman (29-0) TV: FOX PPV

WBA Welterweight Title Fight: Saturday, July 20th 9:00 PM ET (MGM Grand Garden Arena) Las Vegas, NV.

Fight odds: Manny Pacquiao -145 Keith Thurman +115

Fanduel Boxing Pick Manny Pacquiao vs. Keith Thurman

Manny Pacquiao will fight Keith Thurman for the WBA Welterweight Title at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. Pacquiao is 40, 5’5 1/2, 147 lbs with a 67 inch reach. Thurman is 30, 5’7 1/2, 147 lbs with a 69 inch reach. This will be a tough test for Pacquiao who is still a formidable fighter, but knows his best days are behind him. Pacquiao still has speed and punching power, but has lost a step and at 40 and is likely nearing the end of his boxing career. Thurman, 10 years his junior is a great welterweight and has fought some tough competition and won. The question will be can Pacquiao stay in close range to last the onslaught from Thurman.

Thurman is an awkward fighter with strong fundamentals and good power. Pacquiao is an action fighter looking to push forward and land combination punches. In Thurman’s bout against Shawn Porter he was able to get the better of the exchanges against a come forward fighter like Porter. Pacquiao has a similar style to Porter, but with better skills. Pacquiao doesn’t have the size to match Thurman. Thurman has shown the ability to box and move when his opponent is on the attack. Pacquiao has more experience and miles on his body as Thurman isn’t the most active fighter with 29 career fights versus 70 fights for Pacquiao.

Thurman has the advantage in power and size. Pacquiao has the advantage in speed and combination punching. Thurman may not be the fastest fighter, but he is fast enough and with a decent chin and solid counters there is a chance he catches Pacquiao and ends the fight before the final bell. Thurman is the physically bigger man, with a height and reach advantage. While Thurman is a natural welterweight, at 147 lbs, Pacquiao is a naturally smaller fighter, more suited for 140 lbs. Since the Porter win, Thurman beat Danny Garcia and Josesito Lopez by decision.

Draftkings Boxing Pick Manny Pacquiao vs. Keith Thurman

Thurman is able to use distance well and get in and out of range quickly utilizing great footwork while landing sharp shots of his own. This may frustrate Pacquiao who is more of a come forward fighter that may have trouble connecting with Thurman on any meaningful punches. Pacquiao’s defense looked sharp in recent fights using side to side movement to keep his opponent off balance. If Thurman can find his timing, he will have the upper hand in most of the rounds. Behind a left jab, Thurman sets up his whole offense and with a reach and height advantage against a smaller Pacquiao he should utilize it effectively to negate most of Pacquiao’s offense.

Pacquiao has looked impressive in his recent fights against Lucas Matthysee and Adrien Broner. Pacquiao sent Matthysee into retirement with a knockout win and Broner hasn’t fought since the unanimous decision loss to Pacquiao. Against Broner, Pacquiao used his speed and movement against a more stationary target. Broner has decent defense, but wasn’t offensive enough and didn’t have enough head or body movement to win rounds against Pacquiao. But, Thurman is a better fighter and is always moving and looking for angles to either get out of the way of punches or to land his own shots. This will be an entertaining fight as Pacquiao’s fast hands and all action style should mesh well with the brooding power and defense of Thurman.

Pick: Keith Thurman by Decision