By Chris Williams: Former eight division world champion Manny Pacquiao (60-7-2, 39 KOs) scored his first knockout in nine years since 2009 in stopping a completely shot looking WBA ‘regular’ welterweight champion Lucas Matthysse (39-5, 36 KOs) in the 7th round on Saturday night to win the World Boxing Association secondary 147 lb. title at the Axiata Arena in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
The fight was stopped after Pacquiao knocked the 35-year-old Matthysse down with a left uppercut in round 7. Referee Kenny Bayless stopped the fight. It was a quick stoppage by Bayless, but Matthysse spitting out his mouthpiece made it clear that he was quitting.
All total, the 39-year-old Pacquiao knocked Matthysse down three times in the fight in dropping him in the 3rd, 5th and 7th. In round 3, Pacquiao knocked Matthysse down with an uppercut in a one-sided round. Matthysse was down again in the 5th round from a right hand to the temple. It was a grazing shot, but Matthysse still went down with a delayed reaction. In the 6th Pacquiao hit Matthysse with hard uppercuts, jabs and mostly left hands. It was no longer a fight at that point, as Matthysse looked defeated.
With the victory, Pacquiao’s former promoter Bob Arum of Top Rank will make a huge push to put him in with Vasyl Lomachenko next in December. Pacquiao will probably need to move down in weight to at least 138 for the fight to happen. Arum will of course make an effort to match Pacquiao against Top Rank stable fighter Terence Crawford, who holds the WBO welterweight title. If Pacquiao turns that down, Arum will then likely offer Lomachenko for him to fight. If Pacquiao still says no, Arum will almost surely offer him WBC light welterweight champion Jose Ramirez. Pacquiao would get more attention if he was to fight Keith Thurman or Spence, but he would lose to them badly. Crawford would beat Pacquiao, but there wouldn’t be much interest from the casual boxing fans in a Pacquiao-Crawford fight.