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Manny Pacquiao vs. Terence Crawford odds: Will the Pacman become boxing's "Tom Brady" with a win over Bud?

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Joseph Herron Updated
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This past February, future Hall of Fame quarterback Tom Brady put forth another legendary performance on the biggest stage of professional football, earning a record breaking seventh Super Bowl ring against the betting odds favorite Kansas City Chiefs.
 
Leading into the highly anticipated final game of the NFL 2020 season, Brady's Buccaneers were listed as the slight betting underdog at +3.  The iconic quarterback once again proved all of his naysayers wrong by lighting up the scoreboard and leading his team to a surprising blowout victory over the favored AFC squad with a final score of 31-9.
 
At 43, "Tom Terrific" proved that age is nothing but a number when greatness competes.  With the victory, Brady cemented his legacy as the very best to ever play the quarterback position.
 
Although the betting line for a projected June 5th superfight between Manny Pacqauiao and Terence Crawford hasn't been established, most ringside experts and interested observers view the current WBO Welterweight champion as the clear betting favorite.
 
Many handicappers speculate that Terence Crawford will be listed as a comfortable 3 to 1 (-300) odds favorite with Manny Pacquiao cited as a very live 2 to 1 (+200) betting underdog when lines are finally examined and eventually released.  
 
Why?
 
Before we go into the numerous reasons why Manny is expected to be the sizeable underdog here, it's important to remember that odds reflect the anticipated flow of betting, not the oddsmaker's opinion on the fight itself.  In short, the gamblers ultimately determine the betting lines.
 
Just like the renowned NFL superstar, most believe the Pacman will be severely overmatched leading into the unofficial welterweight unification because of his age.
 
If the superfight does indeed take place this summer, Manny Pacquiao will enter the ring at age 42.  More importantly, the Filipino Senator hasn't competed at the elite level in almost two whole years.
 
The Pacman will not only be competing against a rival who is nine years his junior, but also an undefeated champion who is currently recognized as one of the best pound for pound fighters in boxing.
 
Since moving up to 147 pounds, Terence Crawford has been impressive in the ring, stopping every man he's faced within the distance.  The three-division world champion is considered to be one of the most versatile fighters of his generation, implementing various styles and tactics to defeat each opponent.
 
And unlike Pacquiao, Bud has stayed active, even through the pandemic, knocking out former IBF champion Kell Brook just five months ago.  
 
At age 42,  fans really don't know what to expect from the sport's only eight division world champion when he returns...especially against an elite level athlete in his fighting prime like Bud Crawford.
 
But if Manny were to somehow overcome the odds and defeat the clear betting odds favorite,  Pacquiao would further cement his legacy as one of the best to ever do it...just like the NFL's Tom Brady.
 
Let's examine another all-time great's time capsule performance, and how he overcame heavy odds and a lengthy period of inactivity to defeat a seemingly unbeatable and long-reigning champion.
 
In April of 1987, Sugar Ray Leonard came out of a three-year period of inactivity to challenge Middleweight kingpin Marvelous Marvin Hagler.  Not only had Leonard been absent from the ring for three years, he also had only one fight in a five year period after suffering a detached retina leading up to the highly anticipated event. 
 
Most critics believed Leonard was out of his mind for taking on such an "improbable" mission, and felt the natural Middleweight fighter would eventually punish Sugar Ray and beat him into submission.  Many experts believed the state athletic commission was irresponsible and negligent for even sanctioning the contest, calling it "a shamefully fraudulent fight" and a clear money-grab for all parties involved.
 
As a result, Ray was listed as a 3 to 1 (-300) betting underdog heading into the contest, with the reigning champ cited as a 4 to 1 (-400) betting favorite.
 
But in the "theater of the unexpected" that is prizefighting, anything can and often does happen.
 
Despite ending with a controversial split-decision, Ray outboxed the Middleweight Goliath and captured the WBC Middleweight championship.
 
Can Manny Pacquiao do the same on June 5th, against arguably the best pound for pound fighter in boxing?  At age 42, can the Pacman become boxing's "Tom Brady" and capture championship gold by defeating a much younger, and heavily favored opponent?
 
Does the future Hall of Fame fighter, Manny Pacquiao, deserve to be listed as a 2 to 1 (+200) betting underdog, with the reigning WBO champion Terence Crawford as the clear 3 to 1 (-300) betting favorite?  
 
Or are 2 to 1 odds a bit generous for the elder statesman of the Welterweight division?
 
Will the betting lines be even wider once the fight is officially announced?  Does Crawford deserve to be considered a 4 or 5 to 1 betting favorite heading into this improbable but highly anticipated match-up?
 
We will find out once Pacquiao vs. Crawford is officially announced this weekend on ESPN!  

 

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