MEXICO CITY -- The number of Manny Pacquiao's top fights should include at least 10 or 15, but to highlight five of his best nights in the ring, we should mention some that not only left a mark on fight night but also those that boxing fans will remember forever.
ESPN selected Pacquiao as the second-best pound-for-pound fighter of the last 25 years, and that is due to his victories against the best boxers in eight different divisions, having reached the top of the boxing sport and being considered the world's No. 1 fighter in the pound-for-pound rankings for a considerable amount of time.
Entering his 67th bout as a professional fighter -- against welterweight titleholder Jessie Vargas on Nov. 5 at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas -- it is worth recalling some of those memorable chapters of his Hall of Fame career.
Knockout of Oscar De La Hoya
Dec. 6, 2008, will undoubtedly be remembered by Pacquiao and his fans as one of the greatest, if not his greatest, boxing moment. That night, at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada, Pacquiao faced Hall of Famer De La Hoya, whom he dominated during eight rounds to take over the Golden Boy's place as the superstar in the sport.
The upset of Marco Antonio Barrera
Pacquiao had barely shown his craft to the American public before taking this fight at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas, on Nov. 15, 2003, not knowing that this bout would propel him as one of the great fighters in the sport. His beatdown of Barrera, one of the most prestigious Mexican fighters at the time, made fans look his way from then on. He stopped Barrera in the 11th round, and since then, his rivalry with Mexican fighters has been something to watch over the years.
Historic victory over Antonio Margarito in Dallas
Pacquiao was the first main event fighter in AT&T Stadium (then known as Cowboys Stadium) when he beat Joshua Clottey in March 2010. Forty-thousand-plus fans watched history eight months later when he beat Margarito by unanimous decision -- an exhibition of power and speed -- to win the junior middleweight title (at a catchweight of 150 pounds) and become the only fighter to win world titles in eight different divisions.
Spectacular KO of Ricky Hatton
During his career, Pacquiao has achieved a plethora of great knockouts, but without a doubt, the one against Hatton on May 2, 2009, was simply a special one. It only took him 5 minutes, 59 seconds to take care of Hatton, dropping him twice in the first round and one final time in the second, to end the fight that electrified the full house at the MGM Grand Arena Garden. That would be Pacquiao's last bout as a junior welterweight.
The Miguel Cotto TKO
On Nov. 14, 2009, Pacquiao faced Cotto, who had trouble reaching the catchweight limit of 145 pounds for a welterweight bout and was unable to work around a fighter who was as quick as ever, dropping him twice before the final stoppage in the 12th round. Cotto's technical skills were overwhelmed by Manny's speed, which had him ahead in all judges' scorecards when Kenny Bayless called the fight off 55 seconds into the last round at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.