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Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Roach unloads verbal jabs

Los Angeles — Floyd Mayweather Sr. has surely gotten under Freddie Roach’s skin.

The Hall of Fame trainer of Filipino star Manny Pacquiao went on a verbal attack Monday, less than two weeks before the fight at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.

Roach fired at Mayweather, the flamboyant New York-bred strategist of British star Ricky Hatton.

“Ricky Hatton is like the Manchurian candidate, but since he is from Manchester, England, I’ll call him the Mancunian Candidate,” Roach told ace publicist Fred Sternburg.

“I know Floyd is trying to deprogram Ricky from being a one-dimensional puncher, but it’s too late to try and brainwash a fighter who has close to 50 fights during a 12-year professional career. The fact is Floyd couldn’t program a VCR much less a fighter with so many bad habits ingrained into him.”

Roach, who predicts a knockout victory in less than three rounds, continued: “Hitman is an accurate ring name for Hatton because on May 2, Hatton is going to get hit, man, and a lot! I told Manny I would be disappointed if the fight lasts longer than three rounds.”

The past months, Mayweather and Roach have been trading verbal barbs with Mayweather going to the extent of belittling Roach’s achievements.

“He’s the joke coach Roach,” said Mayweather.

To which Roach replied: “I am in the Hall of Fame, while he is in the Hall of Shame.”

Meanwhile, Pacquiao is flying to San Francisco on Tuesday afternoon on a private jet with Top Rank head Bob Arum and key members of his entourage to throw the ceremonial pitch at the AT&T Park featuring the San Francisco Giants versus San Diego Padres as part of a promotional activity.

Pacquiao will not stay in the Bay Area for long as he is scheduled to fly back to Hollywood by 9 p.m.

Pacquiao will motor to Las Vegas on Monday night (April 27) and is slated to show up for the formal arrival rites on Tuesday at 12 noon at the Mandalay Bay.


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