NAAWAN, Misamis Oriental (MindaNews / 24 Aug) – Manny was inept and utterly defenseless; he succumbed to the charm and lure of Milagros clean and easy in that unexpected encounter. Gone was the lightning in-and-out pleasure he used to dish out to previous foes. He could no longer deliver. He was old and rusty, a pale sorry shadow of the gobbling Pacman of old. The excitement and charisma were gone. Gone, likewise, from the atmosphere his fans’ electrifying chorus of encouragement and adulation of “Manny, Manny, Manny…” All were hushed as their hero inescapably received the jarring head-twisting jabs of Ugas. It was very sad. The loss and the hurt were graver than when he was sent to dreamland by Marquez in their 4th episode.
The Pacman’s lackluster performance forfeits his ability to attract money and command a fight. No promoter will be eager anymore to invest in a Pacquiao fight as no sensible boxer in the mold of Spence Jr. and Crawford will fight an old washed-up champ out of delicadeza and self-respect.
The stigma of the defeat in the fight which is likely his last, could not, in any way, tarnish Manny Pacquiao’s legacy or make a dent to the legend – to the only eight-division champion in boxing history. And the only boxing senator there will ever be at that. Five years after retirement, he will be enshrined in the International World Boxing Hall of Fame in the company of such boxing great as Muhammad Ali (1990), George Foreman (2003); the undefeated Rocky Marciano (1990) and brilliant Floyd Mayweather Jr. (2021); compatriot Gabriel Flash Elorde (1993); and famous fellow fighters he had beaten along the way, namely, Marco Antonio Barrera (2017), Eric Morales (2018), Juan Manuel Marquez (2020), Shane Mosley (2020) and Oscar de a Hoya (2014).
Now that the boxing arena is no longer promising and exciting, the unquenchable fighter in Pacquiao will now focus his attention and energy to the other love of his life – the mixed martial combat in the political arena.
It is advisable that he fights first for the vice presidency and train his punches at a presumptuous contender who has already started mocking and jabbing at him even before the bell has rung. It might yet be the most pleasurable and satisfying fight of his life. The fight may yet knock out the monstrous regime and dynasty of corruption if he rightly teams up with the trustworthy and real opposition.
(MindaViews is the opinion section of MindaNews. William R. Adan, Ph.D., is retired professor and former chancellor of Mindanao State University at Naawan, Misamis Oriental, Philippines.)