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ALEX ARIZA: "THIS IS A PERSONAL THING FOR MANNY...HE'S GOING OUT TO MAKE A STATEMENT"

By Ben Thompson | October 11, 2011
ALEX ARIZA:

"He told me in the beginning. I was supposed to go out the same time as everybody else, but he brought me out a week earlier and he says, 'You know, this one is personal.' He doesn't like him; they don't like each other...I for sure know this is a personal thing for Manny and his approach to training is in that way, so he's going out to make a statement. I'd be surprised if Manny didn't try to knock him out in the first round. It's just my opinion, but I've seen Manny for four years now, you know, with different sparring partners and how his approach to things is. I just know how Manny is. If he wants to take you out, he's gonna take you out...I think Manny is going to go in there and try to knock him out right away," stated strength and conditioning coach Alex Ariza, who just returned from Baguio and gave us an update on how training has been going for Manny Pacquiao as he prepares for his upcoming third clash with Juan Manuel Marquez. You don't want to miss what else he had to say. Check it out!

BT: Alex, what's up bro? Welcome back to the States. How'd everything go in Baguio?

AA: It went great, man. It was great. I always think that Baguio is great for laying the foundation and the groundwork for the work that's to come once we get here to LA because I think this place is more hectic. There's more distractions, logicstically it's a nightmare, and it's just not as convenient as it is over there. It sets the tone, the tempo, and everything. Like I said, it sets a good foundation over there and groundwork as far as his conditioning before we get here.

BT: How long were you guys over there? Was it four weeks or just three weeks?

AA: I was there for four weeks, but we were there in Baguio for three.

BT: So you just went there a little early to get a jump start on conditioning then?

AA: Right, right.

BT: Cool, cool. I've been keeping up with all the videos on MP8.ph and it looks like Manny's ready to fight tomorrow. How do you think he's looking so far?

AA: If we could, he'd fight next Saturday. He's just got a whole different approach to this one. He looks really good. Hopefully he doesn't get burnt out or bored and he just stays, you know, focused on it.

BT: With this being his third fight with Marquez, is he making this one a little more personal than some of his other fights?

AA: I think so, for sure. He told me in the beginning. I was supposed to go out the same time as everybody else, but he brought me out a week earlier and he says, "You know, this one is personal." He doesn't like him; they don't like each other.

BT: Yeah, I heard rumblings that Manny didn't like the way that Marquez came over to the Philippines during the press conference and complained about being robbed in the second fight.

AA: Freddie thinks it was a slap in the face. I for sure know this is a personal thing for Manny and his approach to training is in that way, so he's going out to make a statement. I'd be surprised if Manny didn't try to knock him out in the first round. It's just my opinion, but I've seen Manny for four years now, you know, with different sparring partners and how his approach to things is. I just know how Manny is. If he wants to take you out, he's gonna take you out.

BT: Wow. Do you think he'll be looking for an early knockout then?

AA: I think so. I think so. I mean, like I said, it's an opinion and I haven't heard it from Manny's mouth, but I think Manny is going to go in there and try to knock him out right away.

BT: (Laughing) Damn. How's the diet and everything going? Obviously, I'm sure you've scaled things back a lot since you don't have to beef him up.

AA: Right, no, we don't. I think this is really a fight of speed and just being explosive. I don't think we have to train as hard...I mean, we do train hard, but we don't have to focus as much on the calories and building him up and doing all the plyos to add extra muscle. This is more of a conditioning kind of fight and this is the way he wanted, and I agreed with it, so I think it's good. You know, we'll pick up some of the strength training stuff that we didn't do over there, here.

BT: Can you tell a difference in his speed at all? Does he seem like he's faster to you since he doesn't have to bulk up, or is he pretty much the same?

AA: I think, for Manny, because I think the way he trains so hard in those weeks, when you have 4 months off or 5 months off and let his body completely recuperate, his ability to bounce back and get into shape and stuff like that, and all the ailments that you get from those hard weeks of training, you know, they get a chance to recover and recuperate, so you get to come back strong and stronger. So yeah, I see him a lot quicker; I see him fast. You know, not having to worry about gaining all that weight and getting so big, those aren't issues right now.

BT: Well, like I said, just judging from the videos that have been going up on MP8.ph, there definitely seems to be something different about this fight.

AA: Oh, it has a whole different aura to it, that's for sure. Like I said, definitely, it's personal. Manny's approach to it, it's not work as much; it's something that he wants.



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