LOS ANGELES — Manny Pacquiao predicted that Joshua Clottey of Ghana will suffer the same fate as Miguel Cotto and a few others who have tried to underestimate him as the Filipino champ arrived here from the Philippines to prepare for his March 13 fight at Cowboys Stadium in Dallas, Texas. “People were saying that I won’t be able to put Cotto down but you know what happened,” Pacquiao said during an interview. Faced with a dangerous puncher in Cotto late last year, Pacquiao showed why he deserves the mythical title of pound-for-pound king when he stopped the Puerto Rican in the 12th round. Pacquiao concedes that Clottey is the bigger man but reiterated that the same thing was said when he fought and eventually beat Oscar De La Hoya, Ricky Hatton, and Cotto. Looking refreshed after enjoying what he called a trouble-free “11-hour sleep” on board Philippine Airlines, Pacquiao sounded confident but still believes he has to work hard in the gym to ensure victory.
“Clottey is big and strong,” said Pacquiao, citing that he has to watch out for the African’s “great hook and a nice uppercut.” Pacquiao won’t begin training camp until Thursday as the Filipino has to fulfil his promotional obligations in Dallas on Tuesday and in New York City on Wednesday. On Monday afternoon, a private plane will pick Pacquiao and members of his entourage and bring them to Las Vegas to fetch Hall of Fame promoter Bob Arum and his stepson, Todd DuBoef, who is president of Top Rank. From Vegas, the Pacquiao and Arum parties will proceed to Dallas in time for the kickoff press conference set at Cowboys Stadium at 1 p.m. Afterwards, Pacquiao will fly to New York at 6:40 p.m. for the press gig at Madison Square Garden the following day then Pacquiao will be flown back here so he could prepare for his first day of training at the Wild Card in Hollywood on Thursday. Pacquiao will only have seven weeks to rev up for Clottey, who is best known for losing a controversial 12-round split decision to Cotto in June last year.