Once more, with feelings


THE shock waves of  Manny Pacquiao’s loss to equally-prized fighter, Juan Manuel Marquez, still continues to be felt all over, especially in the Philippines.

Even the Donaire win over Jorge Arce cannot erase some incidents surrounding Pacquiao’s loss.

It has been weeks after the fight, but the aftershocks remain.

One of this unfortunate incident was the mauling of Getty photographer Al Bello, by Pacquiao’s aides during the fight. Images of Pacquiao’s financial adviser Michael Koncz and personal trainer and bosom friend, Buboy Fernandez were flashed all over the world.

Although the two mentioned in the incident had apologized, publicly the harm was done. “Had I not gotten off the ring, I have no doubt the two of them would have beaten the hell out of me and I might have been seriously hurt,” Bello told Yahoo Sports.

As a media  person, I agree with the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines’ (NUJP) demand that Pacquaio sanction the two members of his camp for this unsportsmanlike conduct.

Although the Executive Director of the Nevada State Athletic Commission, Keith Kizer, said that he will review the incident and that he would consider potential penalties against Koncz and Fernandez, the insult and the injury lingers on.

“What I find interesting is that neither of these gentlemen, nor anyone else from Team Pacquiao had any problems, when photographers were doing their jobs and shooting of pictures of Rick Hatton after Manny knocked out Hatton out,” Kizer said.

For me, the problem lies with Team Pacquiao. As an analyst pointed out; “Manny and his handlers are thinking of the millions of dollars they would lose, if he hangs his gloves now. (Manny’s take in his last fight is estimated to be between $25 million to $30 million.)

Besides, let’s admit it: Manny has become soft. He has many other things in his mind besides boxing. He is into politics (he is the sitting congressman of the lone district of Sarangani and is starting a political dynasty of his own by making his wife Jinkee run for vice governor next year).

In showbiz, he has his own television show, has appeared in movies and likes to sing at parties. In religion, he is active as a born-again Christian (something that his mother laments).  He has his own basketball team, fields his own fighting cocks in cockpits, and is rumored to frequent casinos, although he says he has abandoned his vices.

In other words, he has spread himself too thin. He is no longer focused on boxing — the sport which has made him very rich.

For his last bout, Manny trained only two months, while Marquez trained for four months.

And let’s admit further: Manny likes the limelight. Fame and fortune have gone to his head. Like all nouveau-riche, he flaunts his wealth. He has a Porsche sports car, a Mercedes Benz sedan and other expensive vehicles.

It is rumored that he has bought a yacht and a helicopter. He has built several mansions in the Philippines and reportedly owns one in the United States. In short, all signs of conspicuous consumption. He wants to show people how rich he is.

Even his lifestyle has changed. He now sports white three-piece suits; it is rumored that he and his wife are regular patrons of plastic surgeons and beauty salons, his wife sports designer jewelry, designer bags, clothes and shoes.

Even his mother Mommy Dionisia is bedecked with bling bling, lives in a mansion of her own, and spends her time dancing with dance instructors.

It’s none of our business, of course, but we have seen it all before in many movies about boxing greats. With  fame and fortune come the excesses and, after them, the downfall.”

For Team Pacquiao, they too were engrossed and influenced by Pacquiao’s attitude. At the Los Angeles gym, they are rude to some mediamen, ordinary people and won’t even talk to them, or say hi to them. They, too, have become self-centered and were not as hospitable as they used to be, before Pacquaio was drowned in his fame and glory and changed. These things are infectious and can change people into what they should not be.

I can surmise this happened to Buboy Fernandez, when he lost his cool during the knock-out loss of Pacquaio. They were not used to losing , they thought winning is eternal and they were not prepared for this eventuality.

They forgot what the Romans said in Latin; Sic transit gloria mundi (“Thus passes the  glory of the world”).

Yes. Glory and fame will pass away.

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