Finale episode of HBO’s 24/7: Pacquiao/Rios on tap for Thursday night

The third and final episode of HBO’s 24/7: Pacquiao/Rios will be shown Thursday night at 10 p.m.

All three episodes will be replayed Friday beginning at 7:30 p.m.

Manny Pacquiao (54-5-2, 38 KOs) and Brandon Rios (31-1-1, 23 KOs) will square off Saturday in the welterweight main event in Macao, China (on HBO pay-per-view).

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Timothy Bradley picks Manny Pacquiao to KO Brandon Rios on Saturday

Timothy Bradley was on a conference  call last week with several boxing legends, such as Roberto Duran, Sugar Ray Leonard, George Foreman and Marco Antonio Barrera. All were discussing Saturday’s fight between Manny Pacquiao and Brandon Rios in Macao, China (on HBO pay-per-view).

Like Barrera, Bradley knows Pacquaio more than most in this regard because he fought Pacquiao in June 2012 in Las Vegas. Bradley won a split-decision, though most experts thought Pacquaio was the winner. Either way, Bradley is a student of the game and he believes he knows what Rios – the underdog – needs to focus on to have a chance at victory.

“First of all, he should expect to see Manny Pacquiao being very quick and very elusive and lots of feints in this fight,” Bradley said. “Manny Pacquiao dropped a lot of feints on me and it kept me off-balance as far as shots. He’s very difficult to hit at times, too, because he is always angling out. He’s coming in, he’s coming out, he’s angling out to the right or to the left. That’s what Brandon Rios should expect.”

In other words, Bradley said, Rios should not think that Pacquiao is just going to come straight at him.

“He is going to have to expect a lot of angles in this fight,” Bradley said. “Rios, if he is going to have a chance to beat Pacquiao, he is going to have to close the distance. He is going to have to get close, stay close and punch.”

All that said, Bradley is picking Pacquiao to emerge victorious.

“I’ve got Manny Pacquiao by a mid- to late-round KO,” he said. “Eight rounds.”

Pacquiao (54-5-2, 38 KOs), of the Philippines, is fighting for the first time since being knocked out by Juan Manuel Marquez in the sixth round last December in Las Vegas. Rios, the former lightweight champion from Oxnard, is 31-1-1 with 23 knockouts.

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HBO’s ’24/7 Pacquiao/Rios’ to premiere Nov. 9 ahead of Nov. 23 bout in China

HBO’s “24/7 Pacquiao/Rios” will premiere Nov. 9. It is the first of three episodes ahead of the Nov. 23 welterweight fight between Manny Pacquiao of the Philippines and Brandon Rios of Oxnard from the Venetian in Macao, China. The fight itself will be televised on HBO pay-per-view.

The second episode will air Nov. 16 with the final episode to be shown Nov. 21, two days before the fight. All three episodes will have multiple replay dates.

Rios, 27, is 31-1-1 with 23 knockouts. Pacquiao, 34, is 54-5-2 with 38 knockouts.

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Brandon Rios not about to just rush Manny Pacquaio next month in China

Former lightweight champion Brandon Rios of Oxnard is a hard puncher, and has no problem getting into vicious fights. That doesn’t mean he’s going to just throw caution to the wind when he tangles with Manny Pacquiao on Nov. 23 in Macao, China (on HBO pay-per-view) just to see how Pacquiao reacts to having been knocked cold by Juan Manuel Marquez last December in Las Vegas. A lot of fighters would be gun-shy after being knocked out the way Pacquiao was – as in face-first.

“We can’t go in the ring and think he’s going to be like that from the last knockout,” Rios said Tuesday during a conference call from Oxnard, where he lives and trains. “:We don’t know how he is personally. We have to go in there and wait and wait and wait and see what he has because he is still a dangerous opponent. … I can’t go in there and jump on him to see if he’s done with.”

Rios, 27, is 31-1-1 with 23 knockouts. Pacquiao, 34, is 54-5-2 with 38 knockouts.

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HBO’s ‘Face Off’ show for Manny Pacquiao-Brandon Rios debuts Nov. 2

HBO’s “Face Off with Max Kellerman: Paquiao/Rios” will debut on Nov. 2, three weeks before Manny Pacquiao and Brandon Rios square off in the welterweight main event Nov. 23 in Macao, China (on HBO pay-per-view).

Kellerman the moderator and the fighters will sit face to face, with the fighters answering Kellerman’s questions and the fighters addressing one another.

 

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Manny Pacquiao and Brandon Rios square off at Beverly Hills Hotel

Mark Taffet, an HBO executive, on Thursday said it best when he declared that the Nov. 23 welterweight showdown between Manny Pacquiao and Brandon Rios “has to be a great fight.”

Seriously, there is almost no chance this won’t be a terrific fight when the two square off at the Venetian Resort in Macao, China on HBO pay-per-view.

The interested parties were on hand Thursday at a news conference at the Beverly Hills Hotel. It was a respectful event, with the fighters doling out praise to one another. Robert Garcia, Rios’ trainer, noted how well everyone treated each other during a long press tour that culminated with the stop in Beverly Hills.

But, Garcia said, “On Nov. 23, inside the ring, Brandon Rios and Manny Pacquiao will not be friends. I guarantee that. They are going to beat each other up. Brandon is going to be trying like he’s never tried before.”

Rios, of Oxnard, knows he has a tough task ahead.

“Fighting someone like Manny Pacquiao, he’s one of the best pound-for-pound fighters out there,” Rios said. “He ain’t no joke.”

Rios, a former lightweight world champion, is 31-1-1 with 23 knockouts. He can crack with the best. As can Pacquiao, who is 54-5-2 with 38 knockouts. Pacquiao loves that combination.

“This is going to be an exciting fight,” Pacquiao said. “I know he (Rios) can give a good fight.”

Pacquiao, 34, has lost his past two fights. At least according to the judges. In June 2012 he had obviously defeated Timothy Bradley at MGM Grand in Las Vegas, only to have the judges somehow score Bradley the winner via split decision. Six months later, in December at MGM Grand, Pacquiao was knocked cold in the sixth round by Juan Manuel Marquez.

Rios’ past two fights have been against Mike Alvarado. Rios, 27, stopped Alvarado in the seventh round of a hard-hitting thriller in October at Home Depot Center in Carson. Alvarado boxed more in the rematch and took a unanimous decision over Rios in March at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas.

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Manny Pacquiao agrees to do Olympic-style testing with VADA, but …

According to Fred Sternberg, a spokesman working the Nov. 23 fight in China between Manny Pacquiao and Brandon Rios (on HBO pay-per-view), the two fighters agreed months ago to do Olympic-style drug-testing under the umbrella of the Volunteer Anti-Doping Association.

A story that appeared Wednesday on YahooSports.com reported that Pacquiao signed the contract for that testing Wednesday.

When Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Pacquiao first began negotiations for a fight between themselves some 3 1/2 years ago – a fight that has not happened – this is the type of random testing Mayweather wanted Pacquiao to do as it is considered more extensive than the basic testing typically done by boxing commissions.

Although Pacquiao later agreed to do the testing, his initial refusal put a cloud of suspicion over him regarding possible steroid use because he had moved up so many weight classes and still retained his power.

The testing for this fight is a good thing, but even if all his tests return clean, there will still be those out there wondering if Pacquiao was clean three years ago.

Pacquiao has never tested positive for steroids.

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Brandon Rios speaking in confident tones about upcoming fight with Pacquiao

Brandon Rios will be in the biggest fight of his career when he takes on Manny Pacquiao on Nov. 23 at Venetian Resort in Macao, China (on HBO pay-per-view). During the current press tour promoting the event, Rios has been bold.

For example, he believes he is more dangerous than Juan Manuel Marquez, who shocked the world when he viciously knocked out Pacquiao in the sixth round of their fight this past December in Las Vegas.

“I think I hit harder than Marquez, so the pressure will be on Manny right away,” said Rios, the former lightweight world champion from Oxnard. “Manny hits hard, has a lot of speed and movement – but nothing I cannot handle.”

Rios also suggested he is the future of Top Rank Inc., which promotes Rios and Pacquiao.

“I want to be Top Rank’s new big star,” Rios, 27, said. “I am younger, I can trade and take a shot, and I want the kind of money Manny makes.”

Who doesn’t?

Rios is 31-1-1 with three knockouts. Pacquiao, 34, is 54-5-2 with 38 knockouts.

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Manny Pacquiao-Brandon Rios media tour will cover a whopping 23,722 miles

Top Rank Inc. this week announced that the media tour for the Nov. 23 showdown between Manny Pacquiao of the Philippines and Brandon Rios of Oxnard at the Venetian Resort in Macau, China (on HBO pay-per-view) will go to six cities and cover 23,722 miles.

The tour will begin in Macau on Saturday, then move to Beijing on Tuesday. From there it will go to Shanghai (Wednesday), to Singapore (Aug. 3), to New York City (Aug. 6)  and finally to Los Angeles on Aug. 8.

Pacquiao, 34, is 54-5-2 with 38 knockouts. He’s coming off a sixth-round knockout loss to Juan Manuel Marquez this past December in Las Vegas.

Rios, 27, is 31-1-1 with 23 knockouts. He was defeated via decision by Mike Alvarado in his most recent fight in March in Las Vegas.

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Manny Pacquiao to do all training for Brandon Rios in his native Philippines

Manny Pacquiao typically trains at the Wild Card gym in Hollywood, which is home to his trainer Freddie Roach. Sometimes Pacquiao will start training in his native Philippines, then come to Wild Card for the last month to six weeks.

However, Roach told this newspaper Thursday that Pacquiao will do all his training in the Philippines for his Nov. 23 fight against Brandon Rios (on HBO pay-per-view). That’s because the fight venue, the Venetian Resort Casino in Macao, China, is not far from the area of the Philippines in which Pacquiao will train.

“We have to consider the jet-lag issue,” Roach said. “Macao is only an hour and a half away (by plane).”

Roach said he didn’t relish the idea of being away from his gym for an extended period of time, but that this is what’s best for Pacquiao, who is coming off a devastating sixth-round knockout loss to Juan Manuel Marquez this past December in Las Vegas.

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