The problem with boxing is that it’s more than two guys punching the
hell out of each other. Our innate, animalistic nature wants to see
blood, pain, and knockouts. It really takes us back to the days where
we enjoyed gladiator fights in coliseums. Now, we might not want
death, but we do want action. That is not always the case with boxing,
and that definitely wasn’t the case in the fight dubbed as ‘Fight of
People enjoy hating Floyd Mayweather. He talks a lot and spends his
days showing off his multi-million dollar checks, and beautiful women.
He’s best friends with Justin Bieber and buys jet planes while
sleeping in a bed filled with money. He is the modern day villain. But
he is damn good at what he does, and therefore you have to have a tad
bit of respect for him.
Manny Pacquiao is a country’s hero, a small man, who helps his people, and donates generously. He is a grinder and an everyman. There is never too much fanfare, and he is tactical in his fighting. I mean he was pretty cool with becoming the butt of everyone’s jokes last year, when he was deftly knocked out. And after five years of complaining and asking, he finally got the fight he wanted out of Mayweather. It was going to be the fight of fights. Tickets were sold out in 60 seconds, and the resale was going upwards of $250,000. That’s the cost of a house in most states. No, really.
Leading up to the fight, I was conflicted. I despised Mayweather, but
couldn’t deny his swagger. Although, not in my eyes better than the
GOAT (Muhammad Ali) – he was up there. But what really changed my mind is seeing the kind of guy Manny is. Over the past year, I’ve witnessed his work with my friend Victorino Noval, on charity and the like. Whether it was for a relief fund or just to generally better his
country – he was there. He was a bruiser in the ring that took his
punches, and really dealt with all the vile talk that Floyd through at
him. The winner isn’t always the one holding the belt at the end.
Sadly, he wasn’t the winner of an incredibly tactical fight (thank God
I went to the Clippers/Spurs Game 7 instead), but early on showed
signs of triumphing. Yet, Floyd played this one boring, and in a
sense, smart. He danced and danced, unlike Ali who took his beatings,
he showed us many of a two-step. In the end it wasn’t the fight of the
century, but the fight for statistics. Manny only hit on 18% of his
punches, losing 9 rounds of 12. Floyd will do that to you. As in real
life, the ‘hero’ doesn’t always win, and that’s okay. Pac-Man was all
smiles at the end, knowing maybe, when this fight should have happened five years ago, this would have been a hell of a match. As the all time great Rudy T once said, never underestimate the heart of a
champion, but also never forget the hunger of the defeated.