MIGUEL DIAZ IS STILL FUMING AT ALEX ARIZA; DAVID RODELA GRATEFUL OF PACQUIAO
By Ed de la Vega, DDS
Sun, 06 Feb 2011
Diaz (L) and Rodela.
Sta. Ynes, CA:- After the fight last Friday night at Chumash Casino, I run into two people I knew and got a story to write.
First I run into long time trainer and cutman, Miguel Diaz of Argentina, who now calls Las Vegas his home. Diaz worked the corner of Luis Franco. Franco fought and won via controversial split decision over knock-out artist, Leonilo Miranda of Sonora Mexico.
I asked him one seemingly innocent question and I got an ear full in return.
I asked:- “Miguel, are you working Manny’s corner in May when he fights Shane Mosley?”
Upon hearing the question, Diaz exploded in a rant.
“Is the Pope, Catholic,” he asked rather loud.
When I just smiled and said nothing, he again said “Hey, did you hear me? Is the Pope Catholic?”
Then he continued with his face showing obvious outrage.
“Of course I will be working Manny’s corner. Who else will it be if not me? And guess who is not working Manny’s corner? It’s that fraud who just recently started working for him lately. I have been with Manny for years and that fraud is new. So, guess who is not working for Manny?”
Diaz was obviously referring to Alex Ariza, the conditioning coach of Manny Pacquiao. Diaz and Ariza had a run in after the Khan-Maidana fight in Las Vegas recently and from the way Diaz replied to my question, it appears he is still teed off.
With Diaz’ statement, it would be interesting to see how this controversy will fan out?
Will Manny tolerate two guys who obviously are now very unfriendly to each other, in his corner? Will one of them, or worse, both of them go? Your guess is as good as mine.
But then again, Manny seems to thrive more when there is a controversy. So, it will not be a surprise at all if Manny treats this apparent disagreement between his conditioning coach and his cutman as a “non-event” just like the Koncz–Ariza incident in Baguio.
My guess is both will be asked to “live” along side each other and do the job they are supposed to do. After all, what they do for Pacquiao is really more important than how they feel about each other personally.
And, if they are smart as I know them to be, they will cast aside their personal differences and work together to ensure that Pacquiao is victorious come May 7th at the MGM Grand Garden Arena.
Later that evening as I walked through the casino, I run into David Rodela,
I asked Rodela about the generous grant from Pacquiao that allowed him to purchase a house for his family.
“You know I was so flabbergasted with what Manny did for me. I requested a loan to buy a home for my wife and my kid. Manny asked me how much I needed. When I gave him the figure, he simply whipped out his check book and gave me more than what I needed.”
“What Manny did was extremely important to me. He allowed me to put a roof over my family’s head. I can never put a price on that and I will be forever grateful to him. Now I know that my wife and my son have a place to go home to every night. Manny is a true friend and a great person. He is truly one of a kind,” Rodela said.
Rodela indicated that he may go with Roach to Baguio and help Pacquiao prepare for his fight with Mosley as his sparring partner again. “I may not be able to imitate the moves and style of Mosley, but I have some speed and that should help Manny. It’s the least I can do for such a great man!”
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