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    Trainer marvels at Matthysse punching power as Pacquiao camp allays postponement fears

    Jun 23, 2018
    Lucas Matthysse in a huddle with trainer Joel Diaz at his camp in Indio, California. Jhay Otamias

    LUCAS Matthysse is nearing top form for his upcoming welterweight title defense against ring legend Manny Pacquiao, who guaranteed their July 15 fight will push through at the Axiata Arena in Malaysia.

    The World Boxing Association (WBA) champion continues to train in his camp in Indio, California, where trainer Joel Diaz obviously likes what he’s been seeing with just three weeks before the biggest boxing bout to be staged in the Malaysian capital in 43 years.

    Diaz specifically is awed by the punching power of Matthysse, who he said still packs a wallop at 35 years of age.

    “Lucas is a heavy puncher, a very heavy puncher. I trained Lucas Matthysse for his last two fights, and he is one of the heaviest hitters that I trained,” said the veteran trainer when visited by SPIN.ph LA-based photographer Jhay Otamias in the champion’s camp.

    “If Manny runs in to one of Lucas Matthysse’s right hand, he will get hurt because Lucas Matthysse has devastating power on his punches, left and right,” added Diaz.

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      Meanwhile over at Pacquiao’s camp, the challenger’s handlers assured everything is being taken cared of for the fight card to be staged under MP Promotions.

      Pacquiao, 39, who is also in deep training at his camp at the Wild Card gym in General Santos City, has delegated the management of the promotions to his trusted lieutenants.

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      “As far as I am concerned, everything is fine,” said the fighting Filipino senator amid rumors financial constraints have been hampering the staging of the first ever world championship fight in Malaysia since the Muhammad Ali-Joe Bugner heavyweight bout in 1975.

      “Lucas Matthysse and I are getting ready to give the fans their money’s worth and July 15 will be huge for boxing in Malaysia.”

      Either way, Diaz sees Pacquiao going down as Matthysse’s power will be too much for the eighth-time world division champion, who’s returning to the ring after a one-year inactivity.

      “At this point of Manny Pacquiao’s career, he needs to be very careful,” said Diaz, the former trainer of one-time Pacquiao tormentor Tim Bradley. “Because if he gets hit with a solid punch by Matthysse, he will be hurt.”

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      Lucas Matthysse in a huddle with trainer Joel Diaz at his camp in Indio, California. Jhay Otamias
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