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PACMAN ISSUES WARNING TO THE BOXING WORLD: “YOU HAVE NOT YET SEEN THE BEST OF MANNY PACQUIAO”

By Dong Secuya
PhilBoxing.com
19 Dec 2018



GENERAL SANTOS CITY – If indeed life begins at 40, then, according to Filipino boxing legend and future hall of famer Manny 'Pacman' Pacquiao, his boxing career not only rolls on, but in a sense, it has just begun.

“Look at me. Ladies and gentlemen, brothers and sisters, look at me. I am forty years old. But I feel like I am still twenty-five years old,” Pacquiao, also a Philippine senator who celebrated his 40th birthday here on Monday, Dec. 17, told his invited guests, friends and colleagues at the full packed KCC Convention Center. “At 40 feeling 25, I believe the best is yet to come. You have not yet seen the best of Manny Pacquiao.”

Pacquiao, who has already accomplished no other fighter in the history of the sport had achieved by becoming an eight-division world champion, will defend his WBA welterweight belt against American Adrien Broner on Jan. 19 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.
Started fighting as a pro in 1995 at age 17, Pacquiao is now boxing for 23 years and many times have been called by the so-called boxing experts to hang up his gloves. After his disquieting knockout loss to Mexican arch-rival Juan Manuel Marquez in 2012 at age 34, a loss coming from the heels of a controversial defeat against American Timothy Bradley six months before, voices had been loud calling him to retire,

After his underwhelming performance against Floyd Mayweather Jr in 2015, at age 36 going 37, there was another round of calls for him to retire. Pacquiao did announce retirement after his win over Timothy Bradley in April, 2016 where he promised to focus on his new job as senator, a position he won during the May, 2016 Philippine elections. The retirement however was shortlived because he was back in the ring in November against then WBO welterweight champion Jessie Vargas whom he convincingly beat by decision.

Pacquiao's controversial defeat against the unknown Jeff Horn of Australia in Brisbane on July 2, 2017 renewed calls for retirement but after a scintillating victory over then WBA welterweight champion Lucas Matthysse on July 14, 2018 in Kuala Lumpur whom he knocked down three times en route to a 7th round stoppage, a knockout victory he hasn't accomplished in seven years, Pacquiao seemed to be back in business.


Philippine president Rodrigo Duterte (in gray jacket) poses with Manny Pacquiao and Pacquiao's family members during Pacquiao's 40th birthday celebration in General Santos City Monday, Dec. 17. Photo by Wendell Alinea.

This brings us to Pacquiao’s next outing against Broner. At 40, the talk right now is no longer about his impending retirement although it’s going to surface again if he lose. The immediate questions right now however are 1) how long he will keep on fighting and 2) what level of competitions he will have going forward.

These are the questions that Pacquiao seemed to want to answer when he declared Monday night that we have not yet seen the best of him.

It is no secret that Pacquiao wants a rematch with Mayweather and this seems the direction of his next fight if he gets by Broner next month. Also by working with the influential Al Haymon, he has shown intent in fighting the young lions of the welterweights — Errol Spence Jr, Keith Thurman, Shawn Porter, Danny Garcia and even Mikey Garcia, all Haymon boxers — the very fighters Pacquiao critics said he has no business to be in the same ring with right now.

It is also no secret that Pacquiao is open to fighting against Terence Crawford who many considered the top pound for pound fighter in the planet today.

As far as how long Pacquiao can go on fighting, take note that the great Roberto Duran started fighting at age 15 and retired at 50. Bernard Hopkins captured world titles at 49 and retired at 51. George Foreman became world champion again at 46 and retired at 48.

A person can dream – sometimes wild dreams that border on impossibility. Pacquiao??? The hungry and poverty stricken street kid who rose to world prominence transcending even his own sport? Isn’t his own life a living dream? Obviously the doughnut and pan de sal kid is not done dreaming. I guess, with all he has accomplished so far, it would be unwise not to give him even half the chance of adding more monumental achievements in his own life going forward.


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