Brandon Rios aims to force Manny Pacquiao into retirement in Macau
Mexican-American is confident he can beat the Filipino legend in Macau for the vacant WBO welterweight title and put an end to his career
Brandon Rios has vowed to force Manny Pacquiao into retirement, "once I beat him convincingly" at next Sunday's Clash of Cotai in Macau.
Pacquiao's trainer, Hall of Famer Freddie Roach, said this week the Filipino boxer would contemplate retirement if he lost against Rios. Critics have argued that Pacman should call it quits after coming off successive defeats against Timothy Bradley in a much-criticised judges' decision, and then a knockout at the hands of Juan Manuel Marquez last December.
Pacquiao faces Mexican-American Rios for the vacant World Boxing Organisation (WBO) welterweight title and the 27-year-old former WBA (World Boxing Association) lightweight champion was confident he would end Pacquiao's career at the Venetian CotaiArena.
"I think at that moment in his career, everybody says he has done great in boxing. I think it's time for him to move on. It's time for me to rise," said Rios, who arrived in Macau on Wednesday.
"He has done great [in his career]. He has done a lot; no one can say that he didn't because he won world titles in eight weight divisions. But he has come to a point in his career where he should call it quits.
"It's my time now. I am young and I have to be the best. Pacquiao is one of the best so I have to go out there and do what I have to do to win," added Rios, who hails from Oxnard, California.
The brash American, who is also coming off a loss after his defeat to fellow American Mike Alvarado in a unanimous decision in March, said Pacquiao was well past his prime - and that he would prove this next Sunday.
"What am I going to do? I am going to have to beat Pacquiao. Maybe he will retire after that we don't know. But I am going to go over there and do what I have to do and beat him and come out as the winner.
"If I beat him convincingly and knock him out, maybe he will retire. Two big knockouts could hurt him. But I am coming over here and I have to beat him because it's [Macau] not far from the Philippines," said Rios.
He said he felt for Pacquiao after Super Typhoon Haiyan caused widespread devastation in the Philippines, leaving thousands dead and hundreds of thousands homeless.
"I have seen that [TV images] back home and it was like 'wow that's crazy you know'. My blessing to the Philippines to what happened to them. But I will show no sympathy for him once in the ring.
"I have sympathy for his homeland and everything. Pacquiao and I are fighting. If we are going in the ring and if we talk about whether I have sympathy for Pacquiao, no I can't because I am going to fight this guy but if you ask me whether I have sympathy for the tragedy in the Philippines, I do.
"It's very sad to see that happen … to see little kids and everything being hurt, that's really sad. In the ring, I am going to stay 100 per cent focused. I am ready to fight already. It's been a very long training camp. We have trained almost five months already. I'm ready. I feel great."
Rios said he was not worried Pacquiao had spent the past eight weeks preparing for the fight - the longest since he turned professional at 20.
"If he comes here well prepared and had a long training camp and he's in the best shape of his life, that means we are going to have a good fight going on. That's even better for me, because if I beat Pacquiao, I can say I beat him when he was in his best shape."
Rio was unduly worried that there might be a large Filipino contingent at the fight and the Fighter of the Decade would be receiving huge support.
"I am not worried about that because you know what? I am not fighting his fans, I am fighting Manny Pacquiao. I am not worried about all that. I knew it was going to happen coming here that he would have Philippines fans because the Philippines is close by and I won't have that much support. But it's okay. We are here and I am going to show the world that I can beat him in his own backyard," he said.
Pacquiao has also gone on record by saying he will treat the Rios fight similar to Briton Ricky Hatton, who Pacquiao knocked out in 2009, using an "old and effective fight strategy".
"I know I am no Ricky Hatton because I am younger. I got fast hands and I am not worried about that. They can compare me to anybody they want. They are going to find out what I am all about in the ring. I don't care … it doesn't bother me. I am going to show them. You think I am easy? You got another thing coming."