FOR Gerry Penalosa, it could be the Oscar De La Hoya fight all over again.
In a bold prediction, the former two-time world champion sees Manny Pacquiao forcing Floyd Mayweather Jr. into submission and scoring a technical knockout in their May 2 welterweight unification bout at MGM Grand in Las Vegas.
Penalosa believes the win will come late in the 12-round match, with the referee forced to stop the fight to spare Mayweather from getting punished more.
“Ten to 12 rounds,” said the 42-year-old Penalosa on Friday at the MP Tower in Sampaloc, Manila.
A big underdog against De La Hoya seven years ago, Pacquiao battered the ‘Golden Boy’ for eight full rounds in their 147-lbs match before the American idol retired on his stool at the start of the ninth round.
But Penalosa, who reigned as world super-flyweight and bantamweight champion, stressed Mayweather and De La Hoya are two different fighters.
De La Hoya was already in the twilight of his legendary career when he fought Pacquiao, whereas Mayweather still has some gas left in his tank and remains unbeaten in 47 fights (26 KOs).
The match, predicted by many to become the richest in the history of boxing, is definitely not going to be easy for the 36-year-old Pacquiao, Penalosa said.
“It will be a tactical fight,” said the retired boxer (55-8, 37 KOs), a known close pal of the ‘Pacman.' “You need to make adjustments in between rounds.”
Due to a pressing matter, Pacquiao failed to make it to his Friday training at the MP Tower.
The Filipino boxing icon though, is set to depart for Los Angeles on Saturday night for the start of his intensive, two-month training for the Mayweather fight at the Wild Card gym.