BRISBANE, Australia - A not-so convincing win for Manny Pacquiao on Sunday could mean the beginning of the end for one of boxing's most explosive fighters.
Trainer Freddie Roach will be the first one to tell the Filipino fighting senator to hang his gloves should he struggle in retaining the World Boxing Organization welterweight title even in the event that he defeats Australian challenger Jeff Horn.
Roach, Pacquiao's long-time trainer, bared his plan as he took court while waiting for the 38-year-old champ to arrive for his open media workout at the Suncorp Stadium here.
"If he wins and struggle, I have to think about calling it a day," Roach told a large group of international mediamen waiting to have a glimpse of Pacquiao five days before he defends his title against his 29-year-old Australian challenger.
"He's had quite a few fights and were getting close to the end I know," added the legendary trainer who's been in Pacquiao's corner since 2001.
The Pacman (59-6-3, 38 KOs) has won his last two fights against Tim Bradley and Jessie Vargas, but failed to put away both fighters as he instead settled for decision wins.
Horn, fighting in his first world championship, is certainly not yet in the level of both Bradley and Vargas, and perceived as an overwhelming underdog against his more experienced opponent.
That's why a not decisive victory, much less a knockout, could really be a letdown for Pacquiao, according to Roach.
"I think he has a couple of fights left in him after this one. But if he struggles in this fight, it could be over," he said.