Manny Pacquiao has done many historic things in boxing. Pacquiao is the sport's only eight-division world champion, taken on the best boxing has to offer and has competed in sweet science's biggest marquee event against Floyd Mayweather Jr. in May 2015
Now, the senator of the Phillippines faces perhaps the sternest test of his Hall of Fame career when he battles IBF and WBC welterweight champion Errol Spence Jr. on Aug. 21 from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
Spence (27-0, 21 KOs) is viewed as the hardest puncher in the division and considered one of the top pound-for-pound fighters in the sport. It's because of those accolades that the 42-year-old Pacquiao is of the feeling if he can do what no one has been able to do to Spence in the professional ranks, then it would put him in rarified air.
“We recently celebrated the 20th anniversary of my US debut where I beat Lehlo Ledwaba to win his IBF junior featherweight title," Pacquiao told The Sun. "That was certainly special because it was also my first fight with (trainer) Freddie (Roach). The fight that had the biggest impact on my career was against Oscar De La Hoya. Everything changed for me after that one."
"I got a lot of satisfaction beating (Lucas) Matthysse, (Adrien) Broner, and (Keith) Thurman in a 12-month period, becoming the oldest man to win a welterweight title. Beating Errol Spence would be very special to me for all the obvious reasons and could elevate me into the discussion of being among the all-time greats in the sport. We have a lot of hard work left to do first for that to happen.”
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Pacquiao (62-7-2, 39 KOs) knows that if Spence wins that it'd be the biggest notch on his belt. The "Pac-Man" knows what "The Truth" brings to the table. It's because of that knowledge is what makes Pacquiao get up every day and prepare at the highest possible level.
"To be at your best takes hard work," Pacquiao said. "I want to win and show everyone I can still compete at the highest level. Errol Spence is not just one of the best welterweights. He is one of the best fighters. He is young, undefeated, and a world champion. He also wants to knock my head off. That is all the motivation I need.”