ARLINGTON, Texas – Antonio Margarito was determined to make it to the end of his fight with Manny Pacquiao on Saturday no matter what, and he wound up paying a severe price as a result.
Margarito will have surgery on Tuesday at Dallas Methodist Hospital to repair a fractured right eye socket, said promoter Bob Arum. Arum explained the surgery can't be performed until the swelling on the eye has reduced.
Pacquiao's speed was far too much for Margarito to handle Saturday in their bout for the World Boxing Council super welterweight title before 41,734 fans at Cowboys Stadium. Pacquiao landed fast, hard combinations from the earliest moments of the fight and Margarito could not answer.
Ringside physician Manuel Gonzalez, who started checking Margarito in the fourth round and last checked him after the 11th round, said Saturday he felt Margarito could see, so he didn't recommend to referee Laurence Cole to stop the match. Trainer Robert Garcia said Margarito would not allow him to halt it. Pacquiao started pointing out the damage during the ninth round, but Cole did not stop the fight.
"He's in very good spirits and he's not in pain," Arum said. "They just have to wait until the swelling reduces, then they can do the surgery and he'll be released to fly home."
Arum said Margarito's team, including co-managers Francisco Espinoza and Sergio Diaz, remained in Dallas with him and will fly home to Southern California together on Wednesday, if he is released as expected.
Arum said that as far as is known now, the injury is not career-threatening. Pacquiao trainer Freddie Roach said after the fight Saturday that Garcia "probably ruined his career by not stopping the fight."
"On these kinds of things, you always have to wait and see, but there have been various other fighters who have had fractured eye sockets and they've come back to fight," Arum said. Arum, who was attending the New York Giants-Dallas Cowboys football game Sunday at New Meadowlands Stadium, said he expected to hear pay-per-view results on Thursday. He said he'd likely get a preliminary number based upon satellite sales by Tuesday afternoon.