Last June, Clottey lost a WBO title fight against Miguel Cotto that many feel Clottey won and would have invariably landed him a shot against Pacquiao last November rather than Cotto. As it turned out, Cotto accepted the win over Clottey but got out-dueled by the smaller, faster Pacquiao. Leading up to that fight, Pacquiao appeared on Jimmy Kimmel’s late night show to sing and maybe that began a tradition for the worldwide boxing icon. A career change probably isn’t in the cards right about now, though.
Clottey presents an interesting skill set to the upcoming showdown but is bound to be underestimated by mass audiences. He is three inches taller and has a longer reach than Pacquiao, which would have sounded like a big advantage if Pacquiao hadn’t already dispensed with naturally larger fighters such as Cotto in November and Oscar De La Hoya in December 2007. Another big factor is Clottey’s typical defensive disposition compared to Pacquiao’s busy hands. Clottey covers up for long stretches and will almost surely be susceptible to body shots when doing so. The boxing excitement in March isn’t relegated to that fight, however. Tomorrow, March 6, HBO will air a light welterweight match between Devon Alexander (19-0) and Juan Urango (22-2-1) with IBF and WBC belts on the line. March 26 features a pair of exciting matchups on ESPN2 starting with Cory Spinks (37-5) taking on Cornelius Bundrage (29-4) for the IBF light middleweight title. The same card will also feature Steve Cunningham (22-2) versus Matt Godfrey (20-1) for the IBF cruiserweight belt.