FIGHTING Senator Manny Pacquiao defeated WBO Welterweight champion Jessie Vargas in a bout Sunday, November 6, (Philippine time) at Thomas and Mack Center in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Pacquiao dropped Vargas in the second round and bloodied the Mexican-American boxer's face on his way to a lopsided decision that gave the Filipino champ a piece of the welterweight title once again.
The Filipino boxing champ won on all three ringside scorecards -- 118-109, 118-109 114-113 -- to take the piece of the title Vargas won in his last fight.
Floyd Mayweather Jr. stopped by to see old foe Pacquiao, who tried his best Sunday to give him a show.
"I came to take my daughter to the fights," Mayweather said, with his daughter sitting next to him.
Pacquiao, just before the bell rang to start the fight, smiled and waved a fist at Mayweather. He then came out aggressive, trying to walk down Vargas and make it a short night.
In the eighth round, Pacquiao succeeded at giving Vargas difficulty in dealing with his speed, with the Mexican-American boxer hitting the Filipino champ with a big right and punching his gloves together as if to tell him to stand and fight. Pacquiao went right back after him and they traded punches before staring at each other when the bell sounded to end the round.
Vargas was cut over the right eye by an accidental clash of heads in the eighth, and blood trickled into his eye but it didn't seem to be a factor.
The taller Vargas landed some good right hands of his own, but they were infrequent and he rarely followed up on them. Still, they were enough to keep Pacquiao away at times and offset some of his advantage with speed.
Pacquiao, fighting in his 22nd title fight in a pro career that stretches back to 1995, trained at night in the Philippines in the weeks leading up to the fight so he could tend to his day job as a newly elected senator. With the senate out of session, he was back in a more familiar place, with a crowd of some 16,132 nearly filling the UNLV campus arena to watch him take on Vargas, who was in only his second title bout.
In an interview after the fight, Pacquiao said he is going back to the Philippines and resume work in the Senate.
Asked how he felt, Pacquiao said: "I felt happy because I'm trying to knock him (Vargas) down every round...I was not careless. I'm very careful to go inside because I know he is going to counter me."
He said his goal during the fight was to knock Vargas out every round.
Asked whom he wants to fight next, he said "anybody."
"I don't know who the people want to fight with me. I'm not picking any opponent. Whoever my promoter will give to me, I'm gonna fight," he said.
Pacquiao, who earned a reported $100 million to fight Mayweather in the richest fight ever, was guaranteed $4 million plus a percentage of the revenue of the fight. Vargas got $2.8 million. (With AP/Sunnex)