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Tag Archives: Bob Arum

Rematch in February 2016?

“In boxing, you never know who you’re going to face in the ring.” Manny Pacquiao

By Alex P. Vidal

LOS ANGELES, California — What Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather Jr. haven’t signed yet is the contract for a rematch in February 2016, not the contract for the May 2 welterweight unification fight in Las Vegas, Nevada as reported on the internet recently.

Sources said part of the pre-contract signing agreement for the May 2 Fight of the Century is for Mayweather Jr. to announce the rematch in the event both parties have already signed the rematch contract’s dotted lines.

Thus no report came out since January this year about the possible rematch.

Both Pacquiao and Mayweather Jr. have denied they will face each other in a rematch probably to avoid confusion and to bring focus only on the May 2 event.

Even Top Rank CEO Bob Arum’s mouth is sealed.

No one from the camp of Team Mayweather will confirm the February 2016 rematch pending the result of the first fight to be jointly telecast by HBO and Showtime on a pay-per-view.

LOPSIDED

There can only be no rematch, our sources said, if Mayweather Jr. will trounce Pacquiao in a lopsided contest.

But if Mayweather Jr. will nip the Filipino congressman in a close decision, “a rematch will make sense,” asserted Kevin Lolo of Yahoo Sports.

A rematch maybe possible if Pacquiao will destroy the undefeated reigning WBA/WBC 147-lb titleholder, who hails from Las Vegas.

A week before the titanic tussle in the gambling capital of the world, fightnews.com released a full list of things fans didn’t know about Mayweather Jr. and Pacquiao.

Mayweather, 38, averages over 1,000 sit-ups while Pacquiao, 36, averages 2.500 sit-ups a day during their training camps.

Pacquiao starts his day reading the Bible, while Mayweather Jr.’s morning routine includes brushing his teeth for straight 10 minutes.

HOME

Mayweather Jr. gets a manicure and pedicure at home once a week during training camp, while Pacquiao is followed by some 500 fans on his morning runs in Los Angeles.

Pacquiao eats five meals and consumes 8,000 calories daily to keep his weight and energy up, while Mayweather Jr. eats food cooked and heated up on a stove and in an oven, not in a microwave.

Pacquiao doesn’t drink cold water because he believes it is not healthy. He drinks only hot or room temperature water.

Mayweather orders a glass of hot water when he is out to eat, to let his silverware soak in the glass before using them.

Two heavyweight superstars have picked Pacquiao to win: Mike Tyson and George Foreman, both former world champions and among the most feared KO artists in the world during their prime.

Heavyweight champion Vitali Klitschko, 43, has predicted a victory for Mayweather Jr., who is trained by his father. Floyd Sr.

Former Barcelona Olympics gold medalist and welterweight king Oscar De La Hoya, a victim of both Pacquiao and Mayweather Jr., described Pacquiao as a “difficult fighter” who jumps from one side to another.

ATTACK

He said Mayweather Jr. might allow Pacquiao to attack him from pillar the post and cover his chin and breadbasket with his signature defense.

“Once Pacquiao tires out, Mayweather will launch his counter attack and pocket the round on the way to winning all the rounds,” stressed the Golden Boy, who lost by 8th round TKO to Pacquiao in December 2008.

Miguel Angel Cotto, who lost a decision to Mayweather Jr. and lost by 12th round TKO to Pacquiao, said the Filipino southpaw’s biggest weapon will be Freddie Roach.

Team Pacquiao heads for Las Vegas April 27 (April 28 in the Philippines) from the Hollywood accompanied by a horde of fans, family members, politicians, Philippine entertainers, and journalists on board a caravan that will pass the Mojave Desert in the Nevada.

 
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Posted by on April 26, 2015 in BOXING, SPORTS

 

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Only Michael Buffer is like Caesar’s wife on fight night

Yesterday I was lying. Today, I’m telling the truth,” BOB ARUM

By Alex P. Vidal

NOW that the names of ring officials in the Fight of the Century in Las Vegas on May 2 have been revealed, the Doubting Thomases among Filipino fight fans are getting restless and paranoid.

Some have even cast doubts on the officials’ neutrality.

Others have lent credence on the vitriol of Oscar De La Hoya (39-6, 30 KOs) that third man in the ring, Kenny Bayless, may be a pro-Floyd Mayweather Jr. (47-0, 26 KOs).

De La Hoya could be speaking from a personal experience or out of disgust after failing to obtain favors from the popular referee in the past; his opinion, nevertheless, does not transform Bayless into a hooligan.

De La Hoya cited one instance in Mayweather Jr’s fight against Marcos Rene Maidana (35-5, 31 KOs), where Bayless allegedly “had the bad habit of prematurely” separating the fighters even if they weren’t clinching.

This was when Maidana was about to deliver a coup de grace to Mayweather Jr., De La Hoya pointed out, thus instead of hurting the unbeaten WBA/WBC welterweight champion, Mayweather Jr. managed to survive and beat the Argentine customer on points after 12 rounds.

RESIDENTS

Both Mayweather Jr., 38, and Bayless, 63, are residents of Nevada. And both are black (but we don’t believe Bayless will mediate the bout base on race).

Two of the three judges also hail from Nevada:  Burt Clements and Dave Moretti.  Third judge Glenn Feldman is from Connecticut.

All ring officials are Americans like Mayweather Jr. No Filipino or Asian, for that matter, has been assigned as official.

They were all appointed by the Nevada State Athletic Commission, where Bayless had served as inspector for six years before he became a referee.

Bayless is a former Physical Education (P.E) teacher and considers boxing officiating as a serious job.  He cited Pacquiao’s brutal two-round KO of Ricky Hatton (45-3, 32 KOs) as the worst beating in boxing that he has officiated.

As Hatton laid flat on the canvas, his eyes were still open but were rolling and glassy, Bayless recalled. He called it a night.

Bayless, a father of three, considers the Bernard Hopkins (55-7-2, 32 KOs) versus De La Hoya duel on September 18, 2004 as the biggest fight that he has officiated.

It was witnessed by about 200 million people worldwide, he recalled.

CRY 

He cried and considered quitting as ring arbiter more than 10 years ago when one of the fighters in the bout he had officiated in Las Vegas died of head injury, Bayless confessed in an HBO Sports interview last year.

Bayless was not yet involved in big time fights when Filipino referee, Carlos “Sonny” Padilla Jr., 80, was active in Las Vegas in the 70’s and 80’s.

As the ring officials undergo microscopic scrutiny, only Michael “Let’s-Get-Ready-To-Rumble” Buffer is free from doubts and reproach.

Like Caesar’s wife, only Buffer is considered by fans as above suspicion.

After all, he won’t hold any pen to decide the fates of Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao (57-5-2, 38 KOs).

Buffer is “off limits” in as far as officiating is concerned. His role is only to introduce the protagonists and announce the winner.

But he is also a big Pacman fan. We once asked him who’s the greatest fighter in his opinion after Pacquiao stopped Miguel Angel Cotto (39-4, 32 KOs) in the 12th.

“Manny Pacquiao,” he remarked without any hesitation.

All officials, including, perhaps, Bob Arum, will be under intense scrutiny by fans, except Buffer.

 
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Posted by on April 23, 2015 in SPORTS

 

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Let’s not be fooled; no Mayweather vs Pacquiao duel on May 2

“Everything is negotiable. Whether or not the negotiation is easy is another thing.” Carrie Fisher

By Alex P. Vidal

UNCLE Bob Arum always has the final say.
Not Floyd Mayweather Jr.
Not even Manny Pacquiao.
Let’s not be fooled to swallow hook, line and sinker that Mayweather will finally swap leathers versus Pacquiao on May 2, 2015.
The fight isn’t going to happen yet—not until Uncle Bob sings.
What Mayweather said was that he wanted the fight with the Filipino congressman to happen on May 2; he did not say that they have already inked the contract.
Announcement is different from contract signing.
The Mayweather vs Pacquiao duel will only materialize next year if Uncle Bob, the wily Harvard-educated promoter behind Paquiao’s astonishing stardom in boxing, is part of it.
Uncle Bob’s Top Rank holds the contract of Pacquiao’s professional career in prizefighting which is still binding until 2015.
Pacquiao has the imprimatur to fight anybody on this planet, including Incredible Hulk and Godzilla, at Top Rank’s behest.
Even Oscar De La Hoya’s Golden Boy Promotion could not unilaterally make the dream fight happen without Uncle Bob’s blessing.
If Uncle Bob says “no, don’t fight Mayweather”, the fight isn’t going to happen even if 20 angels will confirm and announce it.
And it appears Uncle Bob is not yet in the mood to agree to Mayweather (47-O, 26 KOs) that the Pacquiao (57-5-2, 38 KOs) match will take place on May 2, at least not yet.
In the first place, some of Mayweather’s demands are incredible and impossible to be accepted by Uncle Bob lock, stock and barrel.

TELEVISE

Mayweather, 37, wanted the rich duel to be televised on a pay-per-view by Showtime, HBO’s rival network.
Just like saying that “Bob, you are not part of this deal.”
Uncle Bob and HBO are like Siamese twins and are inseparable.
It was Uncle Bob and HBO that made Pacquiao a multi-millionaire, not Showtime.
Mayweather can’t just ease out Uncle Bob from the deal.
You can’t discuss about Mickey Mouse and Snoopy without involving Walt Disney.
It has to be a joint HBO-Showtime project or none at all.
By hook or by crook, Uncle Bob should not only be a part of the transaction, he should be on top of the transaction; he should be the main negotiator, not a curtain raiser.
And Mayweather can never accept this.
Unknown to some sports fans, Mayweather and Uncle Bob are not on speaking terms.
There is no love lost between boxer and promoter.
It’s a common knowledge in Las Vegas that Uncle Bob has an ax to grind against the unbeaten welterweight champion.
The feeling is mutual.

MAYO

Cinco de Mayo, a Mexican week celebration could not be the main reason as invoked by Uncle Bob why he was against the May 2 fight.
The main reason was that Mayweather announced he wanted to fight Pacquiao on May 2 under Showtime and hinted of overstepping Uncle Bob’s authority over the future Philippine senator.
Over Uncle Bob’s body.
In world boxing, Uncle Bob is king.
No world boxing body, including the dominant World Boxing Council (WBC), can sway his decision.
When WBC refused to scale down its exorbitant sanction fees, Uncle Bob hied off tothe WBO and WBC didn’t raise a whimper.
No boxing superstar can dictate the terms while Uncle Bob is at the helm.
Uncle Bob is like a demigod. What he wants he gets.
What Uncle Bob does not want to happen won’t happen at all.
That’s why I’m betting my media credentials in the future Las Vegas fisticuffs that the Mayweather vs Pacquiao fight won’t happen yet on May 2.

 
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Posted by on December 15, 2014 in SPORTS

 

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Big injustice for boxing if Floyd vs Pacman is off

“Boxing is the ultimate challenge. There’s nothing that can compare to testing yourself the way you do every time you step in the ring.” Sugar Ray Leonard

By Alex P. Vidal

THERE should be no more excuses.
Fight fans will never forgive those behind the careers of Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather Jr. if the two won’t face each other next.
Or if the dream fight, postponed multiple times, will never happen, at all.
But, lo and behold, Uncle Bob Arum is now singing a different tune.
The 82-year-old Harvard lawyer has joined the chorus of those calling for the Pacquiao-Mayweather match to happen soon.
“Speaking for Manny and myself, we’re tired! Every place we go they ask us when is that fight gonna happen? When is it going to be made? You cannot believe the number of times I’m questioned about this by just people, waiters, anybody, who wants to know one question ‘when is the fight gonna happen?’ I say enough is enough! Let’s just make the fight happen. Let’s get it done,”
Arum declared hours after the Filipino lefty retained his WBO 147-lb crown with a commanding 119-103, 119-103, 120-102 unanimous decision against Chris Algieri in Macao on November 23.
“And let’s make it the next fight for each fighter sometime in the next six months of next year. That’s our position and we’re going to do what we can to make it happen.”

BLAME

We are tired of the now-you-hear-it-now-you-don’t tug of war; of the blaming game and finger-pointing on who’s to blame why until now the megabucks deal has not been inked.
The Pacquiao vs Mayweather fight should happen soon or next year.
No more 2016. No more 2017.
By that time, Pacquiao, 37 years old before the May 2016 elections in the Philippines, will be very busy campaigning for senator.
By that time, 39-year-old Mayweather (47-0, 26 KOs), the richest-ever prizefighter in history, may no longer want to allow somebody to inflict more damage on his face in preparation for a grand retirement.
By 2016, the commodities may no longer be ripe.
It’s enough that Mayweather has collected five straight decision victories against Miguel Angel Cotto (12 rounds), Robert Guerrero (12 rounds), Saul Alvarez (12 rounds) and Marcos Rene Maidana (12 rounds twice) while waiting for Pacquiao to get old.
It’s enough that Pacquiao amassed seven decision wins in his last nine bouts with defeats only to Timothy Bradley (first fight) and Juan Manuel Marquez (KO6, fourth fight) while waiting for Mayweather to say “yes, I’ll fight you, Manny.”
There are other upcoming ring superstars waiting for their date with fame and destiny who deserve to be given large paychecks and mammoth publicity like the one being enjoyed by Pacquiao and Mayweather.
They are only waiting for Mayweather’s and Pacquiao’s exit and they, too, must be itching to hit a paydirt in the main events.

CASH

Giving Pacquiao and Mayweather “honorable” or farewell cash prizes as a token of appreciation for their magnificent contribution in fight business won’t hurt the industry that benefited a lot from their talent.
Uncle Bob should expect Mayweather to continue demanding for a 60-40 purse. HBO, Top Rank and probably Showtime (a rival network) should be ready to fork out some $50 to $60 million for Mayweather’s pcoket.
After the Macao conquest of Aligieri, Pacquiao was again hounded by calls for a Mayweather duel, which is actually beyond his call.
Pacquiao (57-5, 38 KOs) is very much willing to retire immediately after facing Mayweather for an exclamation point of his fistic career that started on January 25, 1995 with a four-round unanimous decision against Edmund Enting Ignacio in Sablayan, Mindoro Oriental.

AGAIN

Fighting again after a Mayweather showdown would be a total folly unless he wants to retire with a brain injury, physical deformities and speech defects (he can’t afford to speak like “Barok” in the Philippine Senate).
He does not need more fame and money. Pacquiao has secured a place in history.
As an elected senator in 2016, he can forget boxing and focus as a lawmaker.
Retirement should be a non-negotiable option for Pacquiao win or lose against the charismatic black American.
Mayweather will never be happy for the rest of his life once he retires without swapping leathers with the only man in the planet to win eight world titles in eight different weight classes.
He will be booed and jeered at as “coward” everywhere he goes.
It’s a big injustice for boxing and a mockery of sports if the Pacquiao vs Mayweather duel will not materialize.
No matchup can be compared to the Pacquiao vs Mayweather rumble in terms of global excitement and promotional wizardry.
Fans can tolerate the delay, but not the postponement.
Fans can forgive and accept if Mayweather lost to Maidana and Pacquiao lost to Algieri, but not the cancelation of the
Pacquiao versus Mayweather match, much ballyhooed as the ultimate showdown.
It’s better late than never.

 
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Posted by on November 24, 2014 in SPORTS

 

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KO remains elusive for Pacquiao

By Alex P. Vidal

AS expected, Manny Pacquiao walked past unbeaten WBO light welterweight champion Chris Algieri, but failed to score the knockout demanded by his fans since November 2009, winning by a lopsided decision after 12 rounds to keep his WBO welterweight crown at the Cotai Arena inside the Venetian Resort in Macao, China.
Pacquiao (57-5-2, 38 KOs) scored a tension-filled unanimous decision over Algieri (20-1, 8 KOs), who was downed six times and became the seventh man to finish the distance with Pacquiao since March 13, 2010 when Pacquiao beat Joshua Clottey by 12-round unanimous decision in Arlington, Texas.
The scores were 119-103, 119-03, 120-102.
Pacquiao, 35, stalked Algieri, 30, the whole fight, as Algieri used his footwork to backpedal and box from outside.
Algieri slipped in round two but referee Genaro Rodriquez credited it as a knockdown for Pacquiao.
Algieri never threatened Pacquiao, who patiently waited to land a solid combination in a hope to nail the elusive knockout victory.

SOUTHPAW

The Filipino southpaw scored two more knockdowns in round six. Pacquiao floored Algieri two more times in round nine and Algieri, fighting for the first time outside New York, barely survived.
Algieri went down for the sixth time at the end of round ten.
Pacquiao’s last KO was against Miguel Angel Cotto on November 14, 2009.
Freddie Roach had predicted a first round stoppage win for his ward, who is now a playing coach in the Philippine Basketball Association.
Bob Arum negotiates for Pacquiao’s next fight eight against Ruslan Provodnikov or Floyd Mayweather Jr.
Juan Manuel Marquez is one of the names being floated as Pacquiao’s next foe. If the fight happens, it will be their fifth meeting.

 
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Posted by on November 24, 2014 in SPORTS

 

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Uncle Bob ‘did not protect’ Donaire

“I saw a lot of people have success handed to them that then exploited it. They didn’t protect it or cherish it.” Aaron Paul

By Alex P. Vidal

Was Nonito Donaire Jr. fed to the lion?
It appears now that Manny Pacquiao is the only fighter in the world who enjoys “protection” from Bob Arum.
Since 2003, the wily but genius American promoter pampered Pacquiao with an assorted list of “falling stars” to ensure his dominance in prizefighting.
These “falling stars” that included Marco Antonio Barrera, Erik Morales, Antonio Margarito, Shane Mosley and Oscar De La Hoya, used to be the biggest marquee names when Pacquiao was only a skinny flyweight oriental champion in the early 90s, and had no idea that in the future, he would invade the Land of Milk and Honey and cement his greatness at their expense.
No doubt Pacquiao is the best in the world, but it would have been a different scenario in the glitzy Las Vegas if Arum arranged Pacquiao’s showdowns with these hard-hitting gladiators during their prime.
With Uncle Bob’s protection, Pacquiao, now a congressman and a PBA playing coach to boot, walked his way to astonishing multi-million dollar contracts interrupted only in 2012 by a pair of back to back losses to Timothy Bradley and Juan Manuel Marquez.

CO-PROMOTER

As the co-promoter of the Nicholas Walters vs Nonito Donaire Jr. battle for the WBA super-featherweight championship in Carson, California on October 18 (October 19 in the Philippines), Arum knew Donaire was facing a younger, hungrier and deadlier undefeated foe with a 115 KO percentage.
But Arum did not oppose Walters.
At 28, Walters, known as “The Axe Man”, is at the prime of his career.
With a quickness of Sugar Ray Leonard, a stance of Thomas Hearns and a force of Marvin Hagler, Walters (25-0, 21 KOs) could smash into pieces opponents with iron Halloween masks.
Donaire, who made waves in the 118-lb during his 20s, is three years older and is a visitor in the 128-lb division despite his win against featherweight Simpiwe Vetyeka in Macao, China on May 31 this year.
Like junior lightweight terror Flash Elorde, who capitulated twice in as many encounters versus lightweight monarch Carlos Ortiz in the 60s, Donaire looked like a police trainee swapping feathers against a military platoon leader in the heavier weight class.

ALLOW

Arum would never allow Pacquiao to face Mosley and De La Hoya when the two hard-hitting American ring titans weren’t yet semi-retired or over the hill.
Except for senior citizens Jorge Arce, Vic Darchinyan, and Guillermo Rigondeaux, most of Donaire’s rivals in his last 10 fights were below 30s and were active ring tacticians and executioners: Fernando Montiel, Volodymyr Sydorenko, Omar Andres Narvaez, Wilfredo Vasquez Jr., Jeffrey Mathebula, Vetyeka, and Toshiaki Nishioka.
Either Arum, CEO of Top Rank, wanted to “punish” the prodigal son Donaire for abandoning America’s most influential promoter in 2011 for rival Golden Boy Promotion, or Arum wanted to give Donaire a “graceful exit” since 10 fights ago?
Although Donaire (33-3, 21 KOs) managed to clobber those high caliber pugilists one after another, his efforts were Pyrrhic.

STRUGGLE

The culmination of Donaire’s hard struggle to walk past those dangerous opponents was the 6th round destruction from the hands of the flamboyant Walters.
Donaire did nothing wrong in the ring. He was superb, brimming with confidence and throwing punches effectively.
But he was simply outclassed, outmuscled and outdueled by a superior fighter from Jamaica.
One thing’s for sure. Arum did not “protect” Donaire the way he protected Pacquiao.
Let’s see how will Arum reinvent Donaire after the Walters debacle.
Let’s see how will Arum revive The Filipino Flash’s career from the ashes of The Axe Man annihilation.
Only then can we conclude if indeed Donaire was fed to the lion.

 
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Posted by on October 19, 2014 in SPORTS

 

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How we report, predict fights of Manny Pacquiao

“Prediction is very difficult, especially if it’s about the future.” Niels Bohr

By Alex P. Vidal

Boxing journalists make their respective pre-fight analysis and predictions while inside the media center of a host hotel and casino in Las Vegas.
Only those accredited by Top Rank and Magna Media International are strictly allowed inside the media center where celebrities and VIPs proceed to be interviewed from time to time a week before, during and after the event.
Whether you are an American, a Latino, a Russian, a Japanese or a Filipino writer or newscaster, your opinion matters. If the opinion is impressive, it lands in the blogs and newspaper pages the following morning with proper attribution. Boxing writers also compliment each other by sharing and swapping data and sources. Sometimes they interview each other.
Not all predictions are accurate though. Nobody had expected Pacquiao to lose against Timothy Bradley when they first collided on June 9, 2009. Although most experts believed Pacquiao was robbed, the controversial 12-round split verdict was never reversed. The WBO 147-lb belt stayed in the waist of the black fighter otherwise known as the Desert Storm.

WEIGH-IN

Hours before the official weigh-in or a day before the first Pacquiao-Bradley fisticuffs, Filipino writers having lunch in a Filipino restaurant on Las Vegas strip predicted a knockout win for Pacquiao. Nick Giongco of Manila Bulletin said he saw Bradley going to dreamland before the 10th round. Roy Luarca of Philippine Daily Inquirer and Abac Cordero of Philippine Star agreed with him. Vancouver publisher Rey Fortaleza and publicist Robbie Pangilinan did not disagree. I reiterated what I earlier told Rey and Robbie that “2012 is not the year of Pacquiao” and that I saw Bradley winning by a split decision.
My analysis was consistent with the statement I made in a long distance noontime interview with Bombo Radyo anchorman Don Dolido that Pacquiao would suffer his fourth loss since yielding via 12-round unanimous decision to Erik Morales for WBC international super featherweight title on March 19, 2005. The same statement I made to RMN-DYRI Iloilo anchorman Novie Guazo, GMA-6 Ratsada, and many other colleagues in Iloilo media.
When the American TV analyst posted the interview he gave me on youtube where I pushed for Pacquiao’s mandatory retirement after the Bradley fiasco, I was sledge-hammered by angry Pacquiao fans and called names.

ANTICIPATE

Many of us also failed to anticipate Pacquiao’s 6th round KO defeat to Marquez nine months later. Prior to the December 12, 2012 debacle, Filipino, American and a few Latino writers and analysts had predicted a stoppage win for Pacquiao in his fourth meeting against the “slow” and “aging” Marquez.
We sensed something wrong when instead of egging Pacquiao to retire after the loss to Bradley, Top Rank boss Bob Arum still signed Pacquiao up for a record fourth clash against the grizzled Mexican bomber. Ergo, I picked Marquez to win on points.
On the eve of Pacquiao’s bout against Brandon Rios in Macau last November 24, 2013, tenminutes.com posted my pre-fight prediction of a Pacquiao victory by unanimous decision even as Manila experts made a cocksure prediction of a KO ending for Rios.

MENTION

While I am proud to mention that I was able to correctly predict Pacquiao’s last three fights as well as some of his past fights, I also goofed when I claimed that Pacquiao stood no chance against the legendary former Olympic gold medalist Oscar De La Hoya, who capitulated in the 8th round on December 6, 2008.
As sportswriters, we are not in business to compete with Madame Auring or Nostradamus. We only report the facts and events based on what we see and the interviews we make. Attendance in press conference is also important. Direct quotes from news sources are essential for the story we write. We are given accreditation because of our credentials and experience, not because we are good in our forecasts and because we belong to giant news networks and publications. We don’t claim to be experts, but we have the edge when it comes to calling spade a spade and chronicling the events on a blow by blow account.

 
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Posted by on April 6, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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