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A Marcial Plan: Shelly Finkel eyes Olympic-bound Filipino boxer


PhilBoxing.com



Marcial (L) and Finkel.

CHICAGO -- Amateur Boxing Association of the Philippines (ABAP) president Ricky Vargas revealed publicly last week that several local and international promoters are trying to lure Eumir Marcial into turning pro.

"Stay focused," Vargas asked Marcial to concentrate on the rescheduled 2021 Tokyo Olympic Games and quench the country's everlasting thirst for the most prestigious gold medal in all of sports.

Vargas divulged no names but he mentioned "staggering amounts" of money, allegedly in the "tens of millions of pesos," are being dangled.

The Manila Bulletin identified one of the suitors as Shelly Finkel, a highly successful entertainment executive who has never competed in the Olympics but has turned everything else he touched in life into gold.

"I don't know how my name got in there. You're the only reporter I've spoken to about Eumir. But people talk," Finkel told me during a telephone interview the other day.

Apparently, good news, like gossip, travels fast.

Finkel absolutely didn't mind having his reputable name being floated out there. His intentions are pure.

Only the crooks lurk in the shadows.

The inference that Marcial will ditch Tokyo the moment he signs with a manager is absolutely false and wickedly misinformed.

"The goal is to make sure Eumir fights in the Olympics," assured Finkel, a bespectacled, eternally baby-faced New Yorker from Brooklyn.

If I were Eumir Marcial or his adviser, I'd thank my lucky stars if Finkel wants me on his team.

Among those whose careers Finkel helped managed include the best of the best --- Mike Tyson, Evander Holyfield, Pernell Whitaker, Meldrick Taylor, Mark Breland, Tyrell Biggs and Deontay Wilder.

For two years and five fights Finkel also managed Manny Pacquiao, helping the Filipino legend ease out some unscrupulous characters within Team Pacquiao and making sure the IRS taxes were paid properly and on time.

To this very day, that relationship remains warm and friendly.

"Manny will always have my love," he reiterates.

Finkel's reputation remains unsullied in a sleazy, dirty fight game that is bubbling with felonious characters, He says little and does a whole lot. Finkel doesn't make empty promises. He only delivers, like UPS.

Twice named as Manager of the Year (1990 and 1993) by the prestigious Boxing Writers Association of America (BWAA), Finkel was inducted to the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 2010.

So if Marcial's people are reading this, there is an empty chair offered for Eumir at Finkel's table.

Grab it.


Click here to view a list of other articles written by Homer D. Sayson.


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