LEGENDARY ring announcer Michael Buffer said he is elated to see Manny Pacquiao bounce back from two losses in 2012 and regain his place among boxing's top draws, saying it's good for the sport.
“Such a good thing for boxing, no doubt about that,” Buffer told Spin.ph. “Pacquiao is probably is in the top three or four (most popular fighters today).”
The man known for his iconic and infectious ‘Let’s get ready to rumble’ pre-fight line said he has no doubt that Pacquiao still has what it takes to dish off a top-notch performance reminiscent of the victories that made him one of the most exciting and popular fighters in the world.
“He’s one of those popular fighters in the world, no doubt about that. This arena will be sold out, people will be standing out in the hallways, wishing they could get in,” Buffer said.
“Pacquiao is definitely a star and he has star power,” he added.
Having witnessed the rise of Pacquiao from 2012 where he sufffered successive losses to Timothy Bradley and Juan Manuel Marquez, the 70-year old Pennsylvania native said the resurgence only added to the Filipino southpaw's greatness.
“I think what makes Pacquiao a great fighter is the fact that he can handle a loss and he has the will to win, he can come back and prove that he is the champion,” he said, a day before Pacquiao meets unbeaten American fighter Chris Algieri at the Cotai Arena.
“Manny has proven that when it happened to him in 2012, he lost twice, he went back to the gym and got himself prepared for his next fight. He has the ability to be focused,” Buffer said. “The best always want to be better and that is what he has in his heart.”
Buffer meanwhile played down the notion that boxing as a whole is under great threat from mixed martial arts in terms of popularity.
“I don’t believe there’s a threat at all from mixed martial arts. Boxing is a sport that stands alone. You can go to the internet and go to boxing schedule around the world. You see fights everywhere,” he said.
Buffer also said he's now hopeful of seeing the long-anticipated Pacquiao-Floyd Mayweather Jr. superfight.
“If you asked me six months ago, I would tell you it’s not happening. But wind touching our ears say that it might just be happening,” he said with a smile.
“But first, we have to find out how Pacquiao will fare in his fight tomorrow,” added Buffer, who will be the designated ring announcer when Pacquiao and Buffer climb the ring come Sunday.
Watch full interview with Michael Buffer: