Tag Archives: Manny Pacquiao

“Alab ng Puso”

I must admit that I found Manny Pacquiao’s last three fights mediocre. I am not a boxing expert, but it seemed as if Manny had lost the edge. I cringed each time he and Shane Mosley touched gloves before each round. I mean, what happened to this guy’s promises of giving the fans a good fight? Was this the same rags-to-riches Filipino icon who pummeled the likes of Marco Antonio Barrera, Erik Morales and Oscar Dela Hoya to submission?

Like most of my countrymen, I am a rabid fan of Pacquiao. I’ve seen all of his fights dating from 2003, prior to his great knockout win over Barrera. When I was a stingy college student with no extra cash to spare, I waited patiently through the the torrents of advertisements on free TV, just to be able to see my idol fight. Throughout the last decade, I felt overjoyed after each of Manny’s hard-fought wins – and crestfallen in the rare times he fell short. I found inspiration in Pacquiao’s meteoric rise, in his work ethic and dedication, as I went about my collegiate athletics career.

Politics and religious views aside, Manny Pacquiao was my hero.

Even if I had my doubts prior to the fourth Pacquiao-Marquez fight, I tuned in to GMA7 delayed telecast yesterday afternoon. Like tens of millions of Filipino viewers, I was left aghast when the wily Marquez felled Pacquiao in the early rounds. When Manny floored the bloodied Mexican in the sixth, I heaved a sigh of relief that proved to be short-lived. Marquez’ right-hand counter hit Manny square in the jaw. As I watched our champion lie motionless on the canvas, I feared for the worst and prayed to the high-heavens for his safety.

I don’t know what’s next for Manny Pacquiao. Whatever his decision, he has every reason to keep his chin up – and pride intact. He fought his heart out, without any pretensions of this being just all for the money. The Pacman was as audacious and daring as he was in those great duels with Morales. In the end, things just did not fall into place for the champion. Manny lost to the better fighter.

I am just a sports fan. I could not possibly give an informed assessment on why Pacquiao lost the bout. But one thing is for certain, even in defeat, Pacquiao is every inch the Filipino hero.

“Ikay matutumba. Ika’y masasawi. Mabibilangan ka ngunit babangon kang muli.” – Rivermaya’s Alab ng Puso

‘Nuff Said.

Manny should have won. Check out the CompuBox stats below:

To the judges who gave the match to Bradley: Have your eyes checked. (Photo from Manny Pacquiao’s Official Fan Page)

The photo below says it all:

9gag says it best:

Manny Pacquiao – Para Sa’yo ang Laban na ‘To

Win or lose, you’re still my idol Manny!

Salamat, Manny!

Misquoted Manny

When I read the LA Weekly blog post about Manny Pacquiao saying that “gays should be put to death,” I felt utterly shocked at the seeming intolerance, narrow-mindedness and fundamentalist implications. According to the author, Dennis Romero, Manny quoted Leviticus 20:13 in a National Conservative Examiner interview.

Since then, the seven-division world champion has been hit by an internet firestorm. In the wake of President Obama’s groundbreaking personal shift on same-sex marriage, the many voices of the internet lambasted Pacquiao.

It turns out that Pacquiao did not actually utter the words of the aforesaid bible passage. Granville Ampong, the Examiner journalist who originally interviewed Manny published an article to set things straight: “Pacquiao never said nor recited, nor invoked and nor did he ever refer to such context [gays should be put to death].”


Two of Manny Pacquiao’s last four fights have been big yawners. For a person who cashes in million of dollars with each bout, a 50% batting average is terrible.

After the Pacman’s 2nd round demolition of Ricky Hatton, the Miguel Cotto match proved less engaging, as the Puerto Rican ran away from Pacquiao after a vicious knockdown. Joshua Clottey provided token opposition, aside from the occasional jab, as the Ghanaian stayed clamped inside a peek-a-boo defense all night long. The Antonio Margarito fight was the most exciting, thanks to Mexican-American’s gallant if not utterly futile stand.

Need I say more about Shane Mosley? The former pound-per-pound champ, after much pre-fight bombast about surprising the Pacman, danced his way from the Filipino’s fists. I guess when you’re at the tail-end of a storied career, facing retirement and a big fat paycheck, giving a good fight is the farthest thing from one’s mind.

Professional boxing, after all, is a cruel sport where death and permanent disability are constant two-punch combinations.

I enjoyed the Erik Morales-Marcos Maidana showdown much better. Held a few weeks earlier than the so-called blockbuster fight, the bout pitted the grace and experience of El Terible, famous in the Philippines for his storied trilogy with Pacquiao, against the youthful ferocity of El Chino, a knockout artist. The 34-year old Morales, slowed by a career spanning 57 fights, refused to wither under the Maidana’s power shots. The Mexican fared a lot better than Amir Khan, in the latter’s fight against the Argentinian, as Morales snuck in a few punches of his own.

At the end, youth prevailed over experience. Morales left eye was almost entirely shut, swollen after 12 rounds of with the hard-hitting Maidana. And yet, the audience cheered Morales. Even in defeat,  the former champion was feted like the true legend that he is. There were none of the disappointed jeers heard throughout the Pacquiao-Mosley fight.

It would be anachronistic to say that professional boxing should not be about the money. It is about the money, that’s why pro-boxers are called “prizefighters” to quote Floyd Mayweather, Jr. Professional boxing is about giving a good show. And in doing so, the fighter endears himself to the audience in a bond of respect.

Perhaps the ultimate prize is not limited by the size of the purse.

Pacquiao-Mosley at the Blue Eagle Gym! (8 May 2011)

The Ateneo de Manila Track & Field Program presents Manny Pacquiao vs. Shane Mosley, live at the Blue Eagle Gym on Sunday, 8 May 2011!

Under-card fights start at 9:00 AM. Tickets are at Php 250.

Photo credit:


Joe Esposito – You’re The Best

I just love it when Manny Pacquiao chooses rock hits from inspiring 80’s sports flicks as pre-fight entrance songs. “You’re the Best,” from the movie Karate Kid, blared on the Cowboys Stadium speakers as the now 8-division World Champion made his way to the ring!

Video credit:


Salamat, Manny!

Photo from Yahoo.com

Followed by Ghosts – Clear Blue Sky

Check out this badass Floyd Mayweather, Jr. training video. Great soundtrack too. The song is “Clear Blue Sky” by Followed by Ghosts.

Can’t wait for Pacman-Money fight. Go Manny!

Video credits:



Manny Pacquiao (Photo from livetradingnews.com)

Like most Filipino males, I’ve been exposed to boxing all my life. As a kid, I remember watching live telecasts of the fights of “Iron” Mike Tyson, Evander “The Real Deal” Holyfield and Luisito Espinosa. I can never, ever forget how Mansueto “Onyok” Velasco was robbed of an Olympic Gold at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics. I was barely 11 years old when I watched the horrifying points tally against our hero. Likewise, albeit on a different scale, the sight of Tyson biting off Holyfield’s ear remains permanently etched in my mind!

Photos from Wikipedia and Pep.ph

In fact, one of my favorite shows of all-time is the Japanese anime, Hajime no Ipppo, based on the exploits of a dedicated young boxer, Ippo Makunouchi.

Among all the athletes in the world, I respect boxers the most. These modern day gladiators make a living by doing their utmost to knockout the other guy. Permanent brain damage  or even death is the stark reality of professional boxing. Most prizefighters in the Philippines come from poor backgrounds, with only their fists as their means of living. The boxing ring becomes a stepping stone to glory, for a chosen few.

I cringed each time our amateur boxers came home empty-handed from the big competitions abroad and rejoiced with each elusive victory. Nevertheless, I still believe that the country’s first Olympic gold shall come from the sport, when the women are allowed to box at the Olympics! The rise of Manny “Pacman” Pacquiao solidified boxing as Juan dela Cruz’ favorite spectator sport – a potent unifying force that stops crime, silences the bullets of insurgents, unifying a diverse nation with each punch of the People’s Champion.

Many a time have I turned to the Philippines’ favorite son for much-needed inspiration. The following music video of Pacquiao and Rivermaya’s “Alab ng Puso” is a personal favorite:

I cringed each time our amateur boxers came home empty-handed from the big competitions abroad and rejoiced with each elusive victory. Let’s just hope that a  future Manny Pacquiao or Gerry Penalosa could distinguish himself at the amateur ranks first, before turning pro. Nevertheless, I still believe that the country’s first Olympic gold shall come from the sport, when they finally allow women to box at the Olympics!

Video credits:


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