FELLOW basketball pros believe Manny Pacquiao still has what it takes to dominate even after suffering a loss to Floyd Mayweather, his third in the last six fights.
D-League star Moala Tautuaa and Barako Bull coach Koy Banal were just two of the millions of Filipinos who were left brokenhearted after Pacquiao bowed to Mayweather on Sunday at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.
But Tautuaa, tipped to be the No. 1 pick in the next PBA rookie draft, and Banal believe the fighting Filipino congressman still has some fight left in his tank.
“Maybe he’s got a fight in him left. And maybe it depends on who’s he gotta fight next,” said Tautuaa.
“He knows what he’s doing and he knows what’s in store for him because he’s in good shape,” added Banal.
Tautuaa, the 6-foot-7 Cebuana Lhuillier main man, and multi-titled coach Banal joined Spin.ph’s jampacked viewing party at TGI Friday's in Glorietta 3 on Sunday.
“I thought he (Pacquiao) was trying to read Mayweather a little too much. He wasn’t fighting like how Manny normally fights,” Tautuaa told Spin.ph.
The 26-year-old Fil-Tongan said Pacquiao’s corner for sure made the adjustment during the course of the fight. The adjustment though wasn’t quick enough to avoid the defeat.
“He’s been able to do it, he had time to adjust, but he just didn’t adjust quick enough to the fight,” said the current Cebuana Lhuillier big man.
“I’m sure Freddie (Roach, Pacquiao’s trainer) did everything he could to prepare for this one fight. It just didn’t happen in time for Manny to come out victorious,” he added.
On the other hand, Banal said noted that the 36-year-old Pacquiao’s more cautious approach against Mayweather was understandable since it was only over two years ago when the Filipino suffered a shocking sixth-round knockout loss to Juan Manuel Marquez in the same venue in Las Vegas.
“He just can’t attack and do his usual techniques or tactics because he’s also being careful and being smart,” noted Banal, who was joined by Barako Bull’s newly-acquired guard James Forrester and Canadian import Liam McMorrow in the viewing party.
“Siguro, Manny learned from that lesson (against Marquez), that’s why he’s maybe careful against Mayweather, kasi that time, naging pabaya siya eh,” he added.