Sports Eye

“Money can’t buy me honor and glory” – Marquez

By Jesus A. Garcia Jr.

“I DON’T care too much for money, money can’t buy me love.” Taken from the song of the Beatles’ “Can’t Buy Me Love.”

Paraphrasing it, the former world boxing champion Juan Manuel Marquez echoed the same thought in an interview last December 19.

“Money can’t buy me pride and glory,” he said and turned down a whopping $100M purse offered by some Philippine investors for a fifth fight against Filipino boxing icon Manny “Pacman” Pacquiao planned to be held here in the Philippines.

“It’s a tempting offer because it’s a lot of money but I refused it in order to keep my honor and the glory of the fourth fight in 2012 which is important and worth more than that amount the Filipino camp was offering to me for a fifth fight,” said Marquez.

Marquez also pointed out that the fifth fight will risk a lot for him especially if it will be held in the Philippines. He did not elaborate but I surmise that he is afraid he may be robbed of the title by a hometown decision if he fights here.  Like him, we were not born yesterday not to know that and hometown decisions do happen in boxing especially in the gambling city of Las Vegas which many say is the turf of mafia. It also happens in Japan, South Korea, Macau, to name a few.

The Mexican ring warrior Marquez nicknamed Dinamita, now 44 years of age, totes 56 wins with 40 knockouts, seven losses with one draw. He held seven world titles (then) in four-weight divisions: three in featherweight (126 pounds), one junior lightweight (130 pounds), two in lightweight (135 pounds) and one junior welterweight (140 pounds). His last fight was a unanimous victory over the dreaded compatriot Mike Alvarado on May 17, 2017, after losing the WBO (World Boxing Organization) junior welterweight belt to Timothy Bradley, Jr.

But the most monumental and memorable of all his 64 professional fights was his unexpected devastating and stunning knockout conquest of Philippine boxing treasure Pacquiao. It shocked the world (including this writer) that made Filipino boxing fans mourn. We still recall the hellacious right punch delivered by Marquez in the closing seconds of the sixth round that put Pacquiao to sleep on the canvas for at least two minutes, enough to make his beautiful wife Jinky cry hysterically. Many say it was a lucky punch, perhaps, but the result was plain to see.

That fourth unforgettable bout of the two legends (so far) ended their long standing rivalry inside the ring. Their first three bouts were decided on the cards. The first one was a draw, the second was split decision and the third was a majority verdict, all for Pacman. The two aging pugilists are (now) candidates for the prestigious boxing Hall of Fame awards.

“Agto la mampabawi,” said media colleague JunV, an avid boxing buff.“ Nagpapataas lang ng presyo si Marquez at papayag din yan ,” said Ben Tungro, another boxing aficionado. Yes, because money talks always, ‘ika nga, and I guess the two might collide again for the fifth and last time, maybe this year or early next year. And if that happens, Pacman will have the edge because Dinamita will turn 45 on August 4 while Pacman still at 39. Let’s just wait and see.

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QUOTE OF THE WEEK: Because “All flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of the grass. The grass withers, and its flower falls away. But the word of the Lord endures forever.” 1 PETER 1: 24-25

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