Manny Pacquiao Proved There Is Still Plenty Left In His Tank
No matter what Senator Manny Pacquiao may claim, or what his entourage will insist on, as far as I’m concerned the Senator regularly attends Sunday service at the Church of Latter-Day Immortality, and is very close to the Church’s pastor, Father Time. There seems to be no other explanation for the continuing legacy Manny has spawned, and is sustaining, in the physically demanding arena of boxing.
So last Sunday saw the 40-year-old Senator taking on Adrien Broner (29 years old, if you were wondering) at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas and coming away victorious via unanimous decision, and retaining his secondary WBA welterweight title. And you may well ask what is a 40-year-old even doing in a professional boxing ring. Well, believe it or not, boxing pundits actually wrote and reported on how this is a much smarter Pacquiao now roaming the ring, and are far from questioning his decision to still fight.
Jabs and flurries to the body of Broner, characterized by feints and impressive footwork, this seemed to be a more patient, mature Pacquiao. In the first three rounds alone, observers noted that Manny snapped out over 70 jabs, amassing points, and even deftly avoiding Broner’s attempts to counter. The middle rounds saw a big left to Broner’s body, and Pacquiao rocked him on several occasions afterwards. The ninth saw a stiff shot to the face that connected and put Broner on the defensive. Final rounds were cruise control time; and the biggest surprise came after the bout as Broner claimed he was also on cruise mode, as he thought he was ahead on points and believed he had won the fight. Well, there is the concept of Alternative Reality, and perhaps Broner is its leading light and proponent.
Pacquiao called out to Floyd Mayweather Jr. after the fight, pushing for the 42-year-old to come out of retirement for a rematch, and one last glorious payday. There was no real response from the Mayweather camp, and while Floyd did nickname himself Money, it might take more than that to have him don the gloves again, and put at stake his unblemished, perfect, undefeated record. Mayweather is one of the more lucrative pay-per-view attractions of all time; so to have the two butt heads once again would be a boxing promoter’s ultimate fantasy.
Reunited with longtime trainer Freddie Roach for this fight with Broner, Pacquiao demonstrated that an old dog can, in fact, learn new tricks, as he played it patiently and countered with precision and strength. Yes, he may not have the blinding speed of the past, but eschewing his pitbull terrier-type tactics of the past may serve him well in prolonging his career. And while some may scoff saying what is a 40-year-old doing even thinking of prolonging a career, if the resounding reaction of his fans here in the Philippines and around the globe count for anything, it certainly looks like we never want the show to stop.
After the fight, the most hilarious "Something Happened to Me at the MGM" post came from photographer Sofia Genato. She posted:
"The worst foot in mouth story - I go to the restroom and see three swanky hawt ladies and a super pretty little girl taking photos. So I offered to take their photo so they would all be in it. As I was about to take their pic, I said, ‘Everybody say Manny!’, to which they all replied, ‘No, everybody say Daddy!’ OMG, it was Broner’s wife and kid!!!"
And I hope Sofia doesn’t mind me sharing this, as it is the funniest.
ICYMI: Boxing's only 8??? World Champion @mannypacquiao proved there's plenty left in his tank as he blitzed @adrienbroner by UD last night to win his PBC debut in his first fight in the U.S. in two years on the SHOWTIME PPV card at @mgmgrand in Las Vegas. #PacBroner READ RECAP ?? on our website.
So yes, Manny, congratulations are certainly in order. Your record alone would be a fitting legacy to leave behind as you move on to other things, political or otherwise. But that at 40, you aren’t even done with amassing wins and records is something to marvel at.
Photos from @premierboxing