LAS VEGAS — Manny Pacquiao returned to his corner before the 12th round to an unfamiliar soundtrack of steady boos rising from the MGM Grand Garden crowd.
The fans weren't jeering the beloved Filipino congressman Saturday night. They were incensed that "Sugar" Shane Mosley apparently was scared to fight him.
"I told him in the last round, 'You've got to knock this guy out, because it's embarrassing,' " Pacquiao trainer Freddie Roach said. "He told me, 'Coach, I'm trying, I'm trying.' "
Mosley was in full retreat from the opening round against Pacquiao, backpedaling and scrambling simply to avoid getting knocked out.
"It wasn't my best performance," Pacquiao said. "I did my best. I did not expect this result."
Pacquiao, 32, who won his 14th straight fight by lopsided unanimous decision to retain his WBO welterweight title, has seen a similar strategy before. Most everybody agrees Floyd Mayweather Jr. has been dodging Pacquiao for the past year, only he has been doing it outside the ring.
If Mayweather again declines a chance to fight Pacquiao in the most anticipated matchup in boxing, Pacquiao will keep busy with his congressional duties until his next fight in early November.
Pacquiao (54-3-2, 38 knockouts) flummoxed Mosley, who at age 39 embarrassed himself in probably the last megafight of his decorated 18-year career.
So who else might be next for "Pac-Man" if not Mayweather? A third fight with Mexican star Juan Manuel Marquez apparently is promoter Bob Arum's first choice. If Marquez doesn't like the deal, Arum will turn to bruising 140-pound champ Timothy Bradley or veteran Zab Judah.
Roach would prefer Mayweather, believing it's the most intriguing matchup and most lucrative opportunity.
Yet Mayweather, 34, faces many more upcoming court dates than fight dates as he trashes Pacquiao on Twitter and gambles heavily on sports.
"There isn't a day in my life that goes by that somebody doesn't ask me about that fight," Roach said. "People say, 'Make that fight.' I wish I could."