This weekend, Pacman is at it again! No, I’m not talking about the vintage video game from the late 70’s, I’m talking about THE PacMan! Manny Pacquiao. Pacquiao is a champion boxer from General Santos City, Philippines. Considered a hero here in the Philippines. Certainly a source of great pride in this nation that needs a symbol of pride so very badly.
Manny Pacquiao’s fighting record stands at 48 Wins, 3 Losses and 2 Draws. Those 48 wins include 36 knockouts. In his last fight, Manny shamed Oscar de la Hoya, the Golden Boy. Since then, Manny Pacquiao has been widely considered as the world’s #1 pound for pound boxer. And, I am not talking of only a bunch of Filipinos claiming this for Manny, but serious sports analysts all over the world.
This weekend, Manny Pacquiao will be facing Ricky “Hitman” Hatton, a British fighter. This is touted to be a very good fight, and is probalby Pacquiao’s most difficult challenge to date. I am pulling for him, and I hope that he wins once again.
In addition to being a Philippine icon, Manny Pacquiao is a Mindanaoan, and he brings a lot of much needed goodwill to Mindanao. In General Santos City, and also in Davao, when Pacman is fighting, the streets are empty. There is no crime, because everybody is sitting in front of the TV. If you happen to go out during the fight, you won’t see jeepneys on the streets, people in the malls, nothing. It’s dead, except at places showing the fight on TV, especially if they have live Pay Per View.
In 2006, Manny Pacquiao ran for Congress in South Cotabato, but was roundly defeated. Pacquiao’s camp has said that after this fight against Hatton, Manny will fight one more time and then retire, and will run for elective office again in 2010. Personally, I hope that he abandons these plans, if they really exist. Pacquiao is not a politician, and his run in 2006 proved that he is unlikely to do well if he runs again. Other than politics, Pacquiao can do just about anything he would choose to do in the Philippines, he is such a popular figure. Pacman has done a lot of good in General Santos and the area around GenSan, and it would be great to see him do charitable work in the Philippines, or something along those lines.
Whatever happens with Pacman in the future, I wish him good luck this weekend, and hope he comes away victorious. I’m not a big boxing fan, but I am a big Manny Pacquiao fan. I like him as a boxer, but more importantly, I like him as a person.
Good luck, Manny.