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What is Pacquiao trying to prove?


By Al S. Mendoza


IF there is one Filipino today who holds huge positions all at the same time, it can only be Manny Pacquiao.

Pacquiao is congressman, a world-boxing champion, the head coach of a professional basketball team.

Not a barangay kagawad, not a 10th-ranked boxer in a nondescript boxing association, not a water boy in a basketball team entered in a forgettable inter-color tournament.

As congressman in the lone district of Sarangani, Pacquiao deals with the basic concerns of his constituents to include poverty alleviation, health care and social uplift.

As world welterweight champion, Pacquiao needs to fight two times a year to keep his boxing crown – in the process earning millions to maintain his high-profile living.

As head coach of Kia Motors in the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA), Pacquiao will soon be in the thick of hard court battles practically two times a week starting October.

How can one do all those things, all that jazz, and expect to produce even a minimum amount of success?

Remember, too, that Pastor Pacquiao is now a Bible bug and has a ministry that he loves to administer to even in the un-holiest hours of the night.

Not even P-Noy, nor Obama, can do all that with the aplomb of either a pistol-packin’ Mama or a sword-rattling Zorro.

Apparently, Pacquiao hasn’t learned his lessons well.

In 2012, he lost twice – to Timothy Bradley and Juan Manuel Marquez.

They were ostensibly the results of insufficient preparation brought about by too much brain clutter due to Congress work?

Oh, well, he was robbed of victory in that inglorious fight with Bradley even as he wasn’t really at his best at that time.

But that sixth-round knockout loss to Marquez?

A lucky punch did it, yes, but that should not have happened if Pacquiao showed some circumspect and avoided rushing to score a knockout.

Pacquiao was comfortably ahead after the first 17 minutes and 59 seconds of the fight when Marquez knocked him out with a right to the face during a slam-bang brawl just a tick left in the sixth.

Why engage in toe-to-toe combat when you lead your foe by a mile?  Greed?

Somehow, Pacquiao has overcome the twin bumps.

He is now over the hump with his victories over Brandon Rios and Bradley after spending almost a year of reassessing himself.

But then this, a coaching job in the PBA.  A new baggage on his shoulders.

You won’t ever see Jaworski, the basketball legend, transferring to the boxing backyard to train even a potential world champ.

What is Pacquiao trying to prove?  That boxing and basketball can tango together?

I can only say one thing:  Good luck, PacMan, and, yes, good luck, too, Kia Motors.

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