Manny Pacquiao (right) has ended Keith Thurman's (left) unbeaten streak to claim the WBA Super Welterweight title on Saturday, July 20. He defeated Thurman via split decision at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.
Keith Thurman declared he's going to end Manny Pacquiao's boxing career but the Philippine boxing legend isn't having any of that, and on Saturday he taught his younger rival a lesson.
The 40-year-old Pac Man set the tone by sending Thurman to the ground in the first round with a straight right punch and emerged the winner of the 12-round fight on a split decision, becoming the oldest welterweight champion in boxing history.
Pacquiao appeared to have a clear advantage on that day but ringside judge Glenn Feldman gave the 30-year-old American boxer a 114-113 advantage. Tim Cheatham and Dave Moretti, however, both scored 115-112 in favor of Pacquiao.
For the first time in his untarnished career, Thurman lost (29-1) while Pacquiao claimed his 62nd victory (62-7-2) and actually said this wouldn't be his last fight.
Pacquaio's quick shot combination at the later part of the first round shook Thurman, who showed his youth and tenacity as he recovered in the middle rounds and gave his older opponent some heavy punches to the chin in the 9th round.
Pacquiao responded in the 10th with big blows to the body. Thurman was unable to produce the big finish he needed in the 12th round.
Pacquaio said after the fight, "It was fun. My opponent is a good fighter and boxer. He was strong. I think he did his best, and I did my best. I think we made the fans happy tonight because it was a good fight."
Thurman said, "I wish I had a little bit more output to go toe to toe. My conditioning, my output was just behind Manny Pacquiao's tonight. Tonight was a blessing and a lesson."
Thurman graciously accepted his defeat, gave respect to his opponent and called for a rematch.