I just got back from one of my friend’s blog post (deb’s), regarding the Pacman-Dela Hoya fight later tonight (or today in the Philippines).
And there, I left a comment. But I was thinking that Pacman deserves a Blog Post here as well.
As even though we would like to admit it or not, today he is probably the most famous Filipino. And that could be of all time. For today, he is well known & a well respected name throughout the boxing/fighting fans of every country of the world–idolized by people of different races, ages, genders & status in life.
For some time now, he has been the best pound-for-pound boxer of the world. He is the only Asian Boxer to win a World Title in four different weight classes. (I know it should have been five but I guess one of the weight classes he won, did not qualify).
But in case you are one of those Filipinos who would rather see the bad things about the Philippines & any Filipino without looking at the good things, I would like to share to you a few good things about Pacman.
One, he has become a remarkable representative if not an ambassador of the Philippines. (His height, weight & skin color as close to that of an average Filipino as is possible–even though I’m taller than him by about 3 inches, heavier by 3 pounds & older than more than 3 years but at least we have almost the same skin color).
Okay, we can say that he might not have the Hollywood looks of say an Oscar Dela Hoya but as a boxer, he is among the more better looking ones if not among the more likable ones. He has a great personality, a sense of humor & a likable boyhood charm. He has also maintained a humility to him which is hard to find in most people who became famous & rich. Although he’s singing needs some more work, but at least he is not shy about it as we normally see with most Filipinos who think that they have the gift of singing while everybody else thinks otherwise & this is so Pinoy–at least having that love for music.
And okay, you might be thinking, his English, his grammar, his diction & his accent are bad. And it has always been. Remember he was a high school dropout (or even before he reached high school). He was forced to work at an early age to help support himself & his family. But if you have been following him, his English has been steadily improving. I think he has even gone back to school or has been tutored. And we must remember, he is not unlike any normal Pinoy, he is multi-linguial, as he speaks his native tongue, then Tagalog which he would have learned from school, he might be able to speak a number of other regional languages/dialects from nearby provinces, of course he is working with his English & I wouldn’t be surprised to know that he can speak & understand basic Spanish as well. (One couldn’t have that much exposure with Hispanics for a long time & not pick up a few Spanish words & phrases, well at least the swore words).
So to me, he best describes the Filipino, if not the Filipino Spirit.
He dreamt big, he worked long & hard at achieving it, he was raised in a fear of God or in a Catholic home & against all odds, he has become what he want to be–a World Champion. And as I have said four different classes/times over.
He is also probably among the richest Filipino Athletes of all time & a well-known endorser of such giant worldwide brands such as Nike.
But to me one of his most endearing traits is his philanthropic ways. Distributing cash & food as if they will go out of style–giving back to the community & society which made him who he is today. Even providing hundreds of students with scholarships for grade school & high school–giving these kids & their families a fighting chance in life & an opportunity to dream & achieve it. Lastly. making sure he still lives in his native land if not his native community, even though we know that that part of the Philippines is not the safest of areas.
And so again I say, today he is probably the most important ambassador we have or will ever have in a long time.
So win or lose, I still say Manny, I take off my hat to you.
And I pray that you will win tonight!
For those who want to see who the Pacman is, you can still catch the 24/7 videos HBO has done of Oscar & Manny in preparation for their Dream Match tonight.
And you can catch them at these links:
De La Hoya Pacquiao 24/7 HBO
You are also invited to answer my Open Q at:
I just closed that q as we now know who won.
|Oscar De La Hoya||9||9||9||9||9||9||8||9||TKO|
Pacman wins by TKO at the end of the 8th Round.
Read this excerpt from the HBO Website:
A STUNNING UPSET; PACQUIAO KO 8
December 6, 2008
LAS VEGAS – Oscar De La Hoya came into the ring wearing old-school brown colored gloves. By the time he left the ring, he just looked old.
In one of the most stunning and completely dominating upsets in boxing history, Manny Pacquiao won “The Dream Match” by TKO victory Saturday night when De La Hoya’s corner threw in the towel after the eighth round.
A crowd of 15,001 fans at the MGM Grand Garden Arena and a worldwide HBO Pay-Per-View television audience witnessed what was described by HBO Sports President Ross Greenburg as “one of the greatest performances by a prize fighter I’ve seen in 31 years in this business.”
Pacquiao, who began his career as a 106-pounder and had never before fought above 135 pounds, defied the big-man beats the smaller-man logic by winning his celebrated welterweight debut against the sport’s most popular fighter.
Showing why he’s considered boxing’s No. 1 pound-for-pound fighter, Pacquiao repeatedly struck with lightning-quick and precision hand speed to pummel De La Hoya to the face and body almost at will, and stayed fast and light on his feet to dance and dart away from taking a big punch, always circling to De La Hoya’s right to avoid his vaunted left hook.
Most predictions gave the WBC lightweight champion, who has also won world titles at three smaller weight classes, no chance to beat De La Hoya, a ten-time world champion who has fought as high as 160 pounds. The Golden Boy, who was moving down in weight, was expected to steamroll Pacquiao, who moved up two weight classes for the 147-pound showdown.
It was clear from the start that the theater of the unexpected was changing another boxing script.
“They said this was a mismatch and it was a mismatch,” Top Rank promoter Bob Arum said, taking a jab at all the wrong prognosticators, many whom thought the bout should never have been made in the first place because of De La Hoya’s size advantage.
The stunning part was that Pacquiao not only won but also dictated virtually every round of the scheduled 12-round fight.