Chris Algieri will have the world watching his every move Saturday night. | Photo: Stephen Albanese/Tailstar.com
While Manny Pacquiao has been relatively reserved in promoting his upcoming bout with Chris Algieri, his trainer, Freddie Roach doesn’t mince words when discussing the Filipino’s opponent.
Roach has been consistently firing verbal shots Algieri’s way leading up to the fight, and that didn’t change during a recent Pacquiao open workout in Macau. The acclaimed trainer took it upon himself to speak for Pacquiao during a session with reporters.
“’Manny told me, 'One round,'” Roach said. “He's never done that. He won't repeat it, but that's what he said: 'One round.'”
Considering that Pacquiao hasn’t stopped a fight since a 12th round TKO of Miguel Cotto in 2009, that would seem to be a bold prediction, as the WBO welterweight champion has gone the distance in each of his last six victories.
Still, Roach doesn’t see Algieri lasting long when the two square off at the Venetian Macao in Macau, China, on Saturday night.
“I do think it’s going to be early,” Roach concurred.
Those remarks are relatively tame compared to how Roach described Algieri recently , as he has mocked everything from the fighter’s nutrition degree to his lack of knockout power.
For his part, Algieri says he is not affected by Roach’s words. He has heard some of the comments second-hand, but the New York native usually does his best to stay away from the negativity.
“For one, he is wasting his time because I don’t even read those reports,” Algieri said during a recent conference call. “So that’s the first thing. Secondly, I hear about them from other people around me and it doesn’t make a difference to me. It seems kind of odd for him to be coming out so much and saying so many different things and every day it’s a new thing. ...I would imagine it is some kind of strategy, a kind of mental game or whatnot. Freddie’s been around a long time and maybe this has worked for him in the past, but it’s not going to work on me.”
Algieri enters the bout as a significant underdog, but he is confident in that role, something that seems to annoy Roach.
“"He's confident, but once that bell rings, this is not a 'Rocky' movie. Trust me. Rocky's going to get knocked out,” Roach said.
While some fighters might fire back at Roach, or look at the back-and-forth as an opportunity to further promote the fight, Algieri prefers to bite his tongue. Trash talk with an opposing trainer just isn’t his game.
“I am not going to change just to promote a fight. My stance is to not go back-and-forth, and I am not fighting Freddie. That’s not the man I have to box with, so I am not going to go back-and-forth firing darts at each other,” Algieri said. “You don’t see Pacquiao doing that. That’s Freddie’s prerogative and that’s what he likes to do. That’s not me, even if it helps the promotion of the fight, that’s not my style. It is what it is. If he wants to say that, that’s fine by me. What matters is fight night and myself and Pacquiao.”
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