Marquez and thousands of his supporters who packed the MGM Grand arena.
Manny seemingly getting the better of it, but neither man is throwing much. Hard shot lands for Manny. Good left to the dome from Pacquiao. Left to the body from Márquez. Good digging combo from Márquez. Huge left misses from Manny. Good lead left from Pacquiao. Counter left from Manny lands, then a big left straight. Body blows from Márquez, but Manny clearly landed the better shots. 10-9 Manny.
Round two: Manny flicking the jab out, no contact. One-two deflected by Pacquiao. Another left-right from Márquez blocked. Right hook lands for Manny. Good counter flurry from Márquez. Good left to the body from Pacquiao. Good body shot from Márquez. Right hand counter lands for Márquez, but not hard. Left from Manny and another. Good one-two from Márquez and I think I’m going to give him this round. 19-19.
Round three: Double jab from Manny. Right hand lead lands. Left for Manny hits, then a good jab. Márquez misses to the body. Manny pushing JMM back. Good little left to the body from JMM. Good right from Manny as JMM moves in. Good right hook from Pacquiao. 1-1-2 from Manny. Good right hook gets JMM’s attention and Manny lands a one-two at the bell. 29-28 for the Fighting Congressman.
Round four: Hard left straight for Manny and another. Overhand right whiffs from JMM. Much more tentative fight than their previous two. Manny avoiding most of JMM’s blows. Hard right hand from Manny lands near the ropes. Good left from Manny against the ropes, then a couple of solid body blows from JMM. Solid left from Manny. Hard right from JMM lands near the bell, but still Manny’s round. 39-37 Pacquiao.
Round five: Still no huge shots landed; I’m surprised. Good little combo to the body from JMM, but no damage. Pacquiao pushing JMM back, but not throwing. JMM tries to go to the body and throws an uppercut, but nothing doing. Good rights from Manny. One-two for JMM. Good counter right off a jab for JMM. Solid jab from the Mexican. JMM stings Manny bad with a right hand. The two men exchanging, but JMM is getting the better of it. 10-9 round for the challenger, 48-47 Pacquiao.
Round six: JMM loves the middle rounds, and no knockdowns are holding him back this time.
Both men tentative. Hard lefts for Manny. JMM digs to the body. Hard body blows from JMM. Good rights from both men. Hard left from Manny, then a right. Double rights from JMM doing well. Hooks from both men land. Right hook from Manny lands. Jab from Manny. Digging shots to the body for JMM; better round for Pacquiao, but still damn close. 58-56 Pacquiao.
Round seven: “Dinamita” may be losing on my card, but he’s still impressing the hell out of me.
Big right hand from JMM. Flurry from Pacquiao comes up short. Good lead left from Manny, then a solid left to the body from JMM. Manny pushing forward effectively. Body blow from JMM, then a solid left from Pac-Man. Good right from Manny catches JMM. Hard right uppercut from JMM lands. Hell of a round, really close, but still Manny’s. 68-65 Pacquiao.
Round eight: Good right from JMM. Counter left uppercut whiffs from JMM. Left to the body from Manny. Right straight stings Manny. Good right to the body for the Mexican great. Left lands for Manny. Manny lands a solid flurry inside. Right hook narrowly misses. Hard left straight lands for Pacquiao. Very good round for JMM. 77-75 Pacquiao.
Round nine: Hard left hook from JMM hits Manny on the back of the head, but no damage done. JMM lands a good combination. Good right hands from both. Hard flurry inside. Big left hook misses from Pacquiao. Both men exchanging at furious speed, both landing well. Left hook to the body and uppercut upstairs land for JMM. Both men going absolutely berserk at the end of the round; holy crap, what a fight. 86-85 Pacquiao, but the scores could be anything at the moment.
Round ten: Manny is going after the knockout now; Roach says he needs it and he may well be right. Hard right hand lands for JMM and Manny misses with an answering left. Pacquiao getting tagged on the inside by “Dinamita’s” right hand. Pacquiao is officially cut; this isn’t good. Manny says it was a headbutt, but I didn’t see. Right hand lands for JMM, then an inside left for Manny. Pacquiao with a good right hook upstairs. Another brutal exchange at the end and I’m giving this one to JMM. Ugly cut over Pacquiao’s eye; good thing there are only two rounds left. All tied up at 95.
Round eleven: Manny whiffs a heavy one-two. Lead left lands for Pacquiao, who avoids a JMM flurry in response. Manny tags his foe with a right-left. Lead right for JMM. Solid right hook from Pacquiao, JMM responds in turn. JMM is in cruise control; that is a bad, bad, bad idea. Manny pushing him back, outlanding him during this round. Good right for JMM, but his inactivity for the majority makes me score it for Manny. 105-104 Pacquiao; Ignacio Beristain needs to stop telling JMM he’s winning.
Round twelve: Left hand from Manny lands well. Manny moving forward, JMM retreating. Terrible plan. Good lead left from Manny. Another missile left misses. Manny narrowly avoids a flurry from JMM. Manny’s mouthpiece pops out and they briefly stop to reinsert it. Manny explodes at the end of the round and took it in my book; Ignacio Beristain may have hamstringed his own fighter with bad advice near the end. 115-113 Manny, but they’re going to be arguing this one for months. No matter what it is.
Final result: 114-114, 115-113, 116-112 for the winner by majority decision, Manny Pacquiao.