Manny Pacquiao (-700) vs Jeff Horn (+600), Draw (+2800)
It looks like the fight between Manny Pacquiao (59-6-2, 38 KOs) and Jeff Horn (16-0-1, 11 KOs) is going to happen after all. The pair were scheduled to fight earlier this year, but the fight fell through when Manny Pacquiao vs Amir Khan became a real possibility. That fight failed to materialize, so here we are, back at square one.
If all goes according to plan, Pacman will face the little-known Australian on July 2nd at Suncorp Stadium in Australia. It’ll be one of the least-viewed fights in recent memory for Pacquiao, but it’ll probably be the biggest boxing event in Australian history.
Jeff Horn may not be well-known outside of Australia, but he’s still the number one welterweight contender according to the WBO and IBO. For a fighter like Manny Pacquiao, that designation means very little. Horn will be Pacquiao’s first opponent since Jorge Solis (2007) to have not held a world title. Pacquiao has been dismissive of Horn, referring to him as “Jeff Who?”
Horn may be undefeated in his professional career, but he’s never taken on a recognizable name. His career has been littered with regional title fights against boxers you’ve never heard of.
So why is Manny Pacquiao, a busy Filipino Senator and boxing megastar, accepting a fight against someone like Horn?
Maybe Pacquiao thinks Horn is a guy he can knock out. The 38-year-old has retained a lot of his speed as he’s aged but most of his power is gone. His last win by knockout was way back in 2009 when he stopped Miguel Cotto in the 12th round.
The 29-year-old Jeff Horn is still quite fresh. He only turned pro in 2013 and only has 17 professional fights to his name. He’s hungry but also pretty inexperienced. He’s never faced an opponent with Pacquiao’s speed or technical ability, and it’s likely that he’ll struggle.
Last year, Bernard Hopkins reminded us of something we’ve always known: boxing is a cruel world for aging superstars. But Hopkins was over 50 years old at the time and his opponent, Joe Smith Jr., was way more distinguished than Horn. While Pacquiao’s career may be in its sunset years, it’s unlikely that Horn will pose much of a threat. If you’re looking to bet on the winner, there’s only one option; taking Horn (+600) is just a cash donation to your bookie.
Pick: Manny Pacquiao (-700)