As Manny Pacquiao nears what he has said will be his final bout in the ring, the boxing champion says he plans to donate a portion of his guaranteed $20 million earnings to the Philippines to help his countrymen build houses and make other improvements so they can emerge from poverty.
“I’m not keeping that [purse money alone],” Pacquiao (57-6-2, 38 knockouts) said, according to the Los Angeles Times. “I will help…that’s the commandment of God.”
At the final press conference before the match in Saturday, April 8, his opponent, Timothy Bradley, whom he has faced in the ring twice before, said he plans on throwing punches at Pacquiao’s head and body. However, he also took the opportunity to endorse Pacquiao for the Philippine Senate.
“He’s a man of his word, the right man for the job,” Bradley (33-1-1, 13 knockouts) said at the final press conference on Wednesday, April 6. “… To me, he’s the only one who is going to do right by the Philippines.”
Both boxers also addressed the fight, with Pacquiao asking that people tune in.
“I believe it’s more action compared to the last two fights that we had because of his new coach, Teddy. He did a good job for Bradley and we saw that in his last fight. He’s adding more strategy and techniques for Bradley and that makes more action in the ring,” he said.
Bradley told media that the match, for him, is about legacy.
“I’m getting at third crack at it. I’m ready and if I’m going to win this fight, it’s now. I’m ready for everything. More than any other fight I’ve ever been in. If I’m going to beat Manny Pacquiao, it’s now. This is my last opportunity and I’m ready for it,” the boxer said.
The trainers of both champions also expressed confidence in their fighters, with Pacquiao’s trainer, Freddie Roach, saying Pacquiao is in great shape.
“He’s looking really, really good,” Roach said.
Teddy Atlas, Bradley’s trainer, said his fighter is up against one of the best in the last 10 years with what he called a God-given blessing of speed and power.
“And the good news is we know exactly what we’re facing, and that I happen to have the privilege of training a fighter who has also been born with great God-given abilities and also fights with great pride and will for his family, and [will] be remembered in history as a special fighter and a special person,” Atlas said.
“Nothing else can be done. We’ve done everything…. I feel as confident as you can humanly feel in such a tough business when you’re getting into the ring and you’re responsible for a fighter fighting someone [as] dynamic as Manny Pacquiao…” he added.
Pacquiao vs. Bradley III will air Saturday, April 9, 6pm PST/9pm EST via HBO pay-per-view.