20/20 Hindsight: Edwin Valero is Great, But Let's Not Get Too Carried Away About a Manny Pacquiao Fight Just Yet

Boxing fans who have been waiting for a good look at what Edwin Valero is all about got exactly that this past Saturday.

Valero showed just about every kind of crowd-pleasing attribute a boxer can have during his ninth-round TKO if Antonio DeMarco. He displayed a varied and powerful offense, which was sort of a given considering he had won every one of his professional fights by KO.

He showed heart and a willingness to battle through adversity, thanks to a nasty cut that had by brother Spartan117 saying he "thought he saw skull." And after he came out on top, he immediately called out the number one pound-for-pound boxer on most lists, so he proved he was ambitious as well.

Before this weekend, it was fair to wonder if Valero's amazing record was padded by fighting too many stiffs. Some of that wasn't his fault, since for various reasons he hasn't been able to fight against top competition in the Unites States for years.

But DeMarco was a quality opponent who did a lot of things right. He just couldn't match Valero in terms of strength and ferocity.

Lest we get too carried away, Valero still has room to improve. His defense relies more on his athleticism than technique, and he can be hit a little more easily than you'd like for a top contender.

Of course once upon a time, you could also say that about Manny Pacquiao, the man Valero has his sights set on now. A Pacquiao-Valero fight would be dynamite indeed, but Edwin was probably guilty of a bit of hyperbole when he said after the fight, "That's the fight the world wants to see."

He's going to need to beat a few more tough foes before that's true. He'll also have to prove that he can easily keep going up in weight, which Manny managed to do but others haven't (see: Juan Manuel Marquez).

By the time those things happen, Pacquiao may not even be fighting any more. There are a lot of moving parts here, many things that would have to fall into place just right for Valero to get his wish.

Still, he's at least one step closer after his big win this weekend, and there's no reason he can't dream. And we boxing fans can dream right along with him.

Posted by The Franchise

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