Manny Pacquiao's trainer Freddie Roach has revealed the Filipino legend dropped his sparring partner in preparation for his showdown with Errol Spence.
The hall-of-fame fighter is ready for the toughest challenge of his career to date as he searches for a victory over unified welterweight champion Spence who is considered one of the toughest fights in the division.
He will make his ring return after two years out of the ring since 2019 where he recorded a split decision victory over Keith Thurman who he floored in the opening round and went on to win in a difficult fight.
And his trainer Roach has given encouragement that Pacquiao possesses the same power, revealing that the Filipino dropped his sparring partner twice in a sparring season, and is well prepared to start fast against Spence.
“He had probably his best sparring yesterday, we went ten rounds and he got two knockdowns. It was the old Manny Pacquiao from 10 years ago," Roach revealed in an open workout ahead of the fight later this month.
"He’s not as big of a puncher usually at welterweight, but those knockdowns yesterday were a great boost for him.
“I told Manny that knocking down Keith Thurman early gave him a lot of momentum in that fight and I’d like to see that again in this fight.
“Being out of the ring for a little while can go either way with someone like Manny. The thing is, he’s working out all the time.
“Spence is a good boxer, but he’s a very good puncher. We know that when we get inside, we have to be smart getting back outside. It has to be quick combinations and then out right away.
"When he shows up here, he’s ready to go."
Spence is in terrific form, and fought in December after making a comeback from a horrific car accident by defeating Danny Garcia by unanimous decision to extend his winning run to 27 professional victories.
He is now chasing a shot at becoming undisputed champion and moving up a weight, but must prevail in one of the most well-documented fights of his career against a hugely experienced boxing legend.
But Pacquiao is considered to be in the twilight of his career and faces a real test to overcome the speed and strength of the America, but his trainer Roach has revealed his desire to still face the top level fighters in the welterweight division.
“We took this fight because we think that Errol Spence Jr. is one of the best fighters out there. I’ve talked with Manny throughout the years and he’s always said that he wants to be the best at what he does," Roach continued.
"There’s no sense in getting in there with some popular fighter who’s no good. We want to fight the best.
“I think Manny is going to out box Spence. His foot speed is unbelievable and much better than his opponent’s.
"Spence follows you around and is heavy on his feet. He seems very set to the ground. Manny’s speed will overwhelm him. I’m really happy with the game plan so far.”
'The Truth' has revealed his desire to retire his opponent with victory later this month, and could use the victory as leverage to fight against the winner of a potential bout between Terence Crawford and Shawn Porter.
And Pacquiao has been warned that he faces a 'daunting task' taking on Spence by American promoter Lou DiBella, and has emphasised his opinion that Pacquiao must come out the blocks fast and try and set the tempo to stand a chance of taking the victory.