DEATH TOLL, AS OF NOV. 20, 4,011

WITH HEAVY HEART, PACQUIAO FLIES TO MACAU FOR CRUCIAL BOUT

Pacquiao, the “People’s Champion,” was almost helpless as he watched Typhoon Yolanda wreak havoc in the Visayas region more than a week ago. He badly wanted to visit his countrymen in distress but was prevailed upon. Instead, he focused on and worked harder in training. He badly wanted to visit his countrymen in distress but was prevailed upon. Instead, he focused on and worked harder in training.

ALSO: Ariza kicks Roach: Pacman, Rios men clash in gym melee

Freddie Roach, for Manny Pacquiao, and Rob Garcia, for Brandon Rios, got into a verbal tussle. Then Alex Ariza, the strength coach, stepped into the picture. Then everything went out of control.

ALSO: Pacquiao-Rios fight on Solar Sports

Leading up to the upcoming duel that will take place between Manny Pacquiao and Brandon Rios (photo) on Nov. 24 at The Venetian Macao resort and hotel in Macau, Solar Sports will give Pacquiao die-hard fans non-stop coverage and bottomless supply of action as their idol prepares for the biggest match of his career.

ALSO: Pacquiao insists not yet time to retire Promises to visit Tacloban after fight

Other than boxing, Pacquiao also talked about the recent typhoon that ravaged the southern part of the Philippines, left thousands dead and many more suffering. Pacquiao has already decided to cut short his stay here. Instead of flying home Tuesday, he leaves for Manila on board a chartered PAL plane the day after the fight. Whatever happens inside the ring. “After the fight I will go to Tacloban and stay there for a few days,” he said.

ALSO: Not too many congressmen keen on Pacquiao fight

There were reports that between 60 and 70 lawmakers had been given free tickets by Pacquiao but Belmonte could not confirm this. Belmonte said there had been expectations that Filipino lawmakers would constitute a big contingent at Cotai Arena in Macau, considering it was just a two-hour flight away from Manila. “But in the light of events last week, I think our members are sensitive to the plight of the [typhoon] victims,” he said. Pacquiao promised to put up a good fight to inspire the people affected by the disaster and the Filipino nation in general.


With heavy heart, Pacman flies to Macau for crucial bout By Abac Cordero (The Philippine Star) | Updated November 18, 2013 - 12:00am 7 3 googleplus0 0

MANILA, Philippines - Manny Pacquiao flies to Macau today, leaving behind a grieving, typhoon-ravaged nation as he faces a crucial, dangerous fight of his own.

The Filipino boxing icon, an elected congressman, takes a chartered plane to Macau and for nearly two hours he will have a lot of things at the back of his mind.

Pacquiao trained for close to 10 weeks in General Santos City, gearing up for a fight that could go either way in Asia’s gambling capital.

If Pacquiao wins, then he moves on as a boxer. But if he loses, he will have to consider retirement, and put all his time on politics.

Pacquiao, the “People’s Champion,” was almost helpless as he watched Typhoon Yolanda wreak havoc in the Visayas region more than a week ago.

He badly wanted to visit his countrymen in distress but was prevailed upon. Instead, he focused on and worked harder in training.

The typhoon death toll is nearing the 4,000 mark. Thousands and thousands were rendered homeless and desperate for help.

Images of his countrymen in suffering will be on Pacquiao’s mind in these days leading to the fight.

On Sunday, Pacquiao climbs the ring for the first time in 11 months and try to put a devastating knockout loss to Juan Manuel Marquez totally behind.

Standing in front of him at the Cotai Arena at high noon of Sunday (Saturday night in the United States) is Mexican-American Brandon Rios.

While others say Rios is an easy fight and tailor-made for Pacquiao, others believe that it’s not going to be a walk in the park.

“They think I’m an easy fight because I’m coming off a loss,” said Rios, who lost to Mike Alvarado in a grueling 12-round battle last April.

Rios has the ability to take punches in order to land his own, and he said that’s what he plans to do against Pacquiao.

Rios, younger, taller and hungrier, said he will make sure Pacquiao remembers his knockout loss to Marquez, and vowed to send the Filipino into retirement.

Pacquiao has lost two in a row, including a very controversial loss to Tim Bradley in June last year. Now here comes Rios, a very dangerous opponent.

“It’s not going to be an easy fight. I’m picking Manny because he is Manny Pacquiao,” said Hall of Famer Sugar Ray Leonard.

Don’t tell that to Rios.

Ariza kicks Roach: Pacman, Rios men clash in gym melee


Manny ‘Pacman’ Pacquiao and Freddie Roach take a breather after the workout. ABAC CORDERO MACAU

MANILA, NOVEMBER 21, 2013 (PHILSTAR) By Abac Cordero – The Clash at Cotai came four days before the actual fight.

Just before noon yesterday, in an isolated room that was turned into a boxing gym, a fight broke out among members of the two opposing teams.

Freddie Roach, for Manny Pacquiao, and Rob Garcia, for Brandon Rios, got into a verbal tussle. Then Alex Ariza, the strength coach, stepped into the picture.

Then everything went out of control.

As Roach stepped forward, to Ariza’s direction, the former member of Team Pacquiao who’s now with Team Rios kicked the 54-year-old trainer.

Ariza hit Roach near the mid-section. Then Donald Leary, a training assistant for Rios, came out swinging but actually hitting no one.

Leary, a burly Mexican, felt Roach threw a racist remark at him and couldn’t take it sitting down.

It took a few minutes before the smoke cleared. Everybody called everybody bad names, and Ariza dared Roach to get it on inside the ring.

Roach kept shouting back at Ariza, whom he called “tough guy,” then later on the celebrated trainer said Ariza “kicked me like a girl.”

Ariza said he just tried to defend himself because he claimed that Roach was coming to him with a raised fist. A video footage of the incident showed otherwise.

“When someone raises a fist on you the only one who can protect you is yourself,” said Ariza, who may have gone overboard when he mocked how Roach, with onset of Parkinson’s disease, spoke during the incident.Manny Pacquiao was not inside the room yet when the fight erupted. And as it all transpired, Rios did his thing with an exercise machine.

Roach said it all started when he came up to Garcia and asked them to leave the room because their time was up.

Rios has access to the gym from 9 to 11 a.m. and Pacquiao right afterwards. But Garcia said they came late because of an interview with ESPN. They wanted to stay until 11:30.

Besides, Garcia said Pacquiao wasn’t around yet. But Roach wouldn’t hear any of it, and insisted that Team Rios give way to them.

“Their time was up. It was our time. They wanted an altercation. They are bad people. They were wrong,” said Roach.

As Roach and Garcia raised their voices, Ariza shouted at Roach,” Get out of here!” and said something like “This isn’t Wild Card anymore.”

“Throw me out. Throw me out,” Roach said. Then he took a step to his right and toward Ariza who was just maybe five feet away.

Ariza landed his kick solidly although Roach never hit the floor. A report said Ariza’s shoe went off as he kicked his former partner.

Rios said he’s not bothered by the incident because he’s not going to fight Roach inside the ring anyway.

Pacquiao said he can’t say anything about what happened but added that perhaps it was a “misunderstanding.”

The formal press conference for Sunday’s fight was scheduled last night, and chief promoter Bob Arum said measures are being taken to prevent another episode.

“Never a dull moment,” he told Pinoy scribes later on.

“It’s unfortunate. It adds up to the excitement but it’s not to the best interest of the sport. It’s not good for the sport. People think there’s an element of hooliganism in the sport and it reinforces the belief,” he added.

Arum is hoping that things have calmed down but added that security at The Venetian have been doubled up around the opposing camps.

“Everybody got a kick out of it,” he said.

Arum said there’s no move to fine anybody for the incident that was the talk of the town here yesterday.

“Who’s to fine? I have no authority to do that,” he said.

It was an ugly incident, as Arum said.

There’s always two sides to a coin, and people were asking, “Who’s right or who’s wrong?”

They were all wrong.

Pacquiao-Rios fight on Solar Sports

(The Philippine Star) | Updated November 18, 2013 - 12:00am 0 0 googleplus0 0

MANILA, Philippines - Leading up to the upcoming duel that will take place between Manny Pacquiao and Brandon Rios (photo) on Nov. 24 at The Venetian Macao resort and hotel in Macau, Solar Sports will give Pacquiao die-hard fans non-stop coverage and bottomless supply of action as their idol prepares for the biggest match of his career.

On Nov. 21, get to relive one of the most intense and heart-stopping matches of Manny’s career when Solar Sports televises Throwback Thursdays: Manny Pacquiao vs. Juan Manuel Marquez Part III at 8 p.m.

Part One of the two boxers’ training was shown last Saturday night period.

Parts Two and Three, on the other hand, will air back-to-back on Solar Sports on Nov. 23 beginning at 8:30 p.m.

Catch the match-up between Manny and Brandon on Nov. 24 via satellite at 11 a.m. on Solar Sports.

Solar Sports is available on SKY Cable (70), Cignal (55), Destiny (35) and Cablelink (58).

Pacquiao insists not yet time to retire Promises to visit Tacloban after fight By Abac Cordero (The Philippine Star) | Updated November 20, 2013 - 12:00am 0 3 googleplus0 0


Manny Pacquiao ABAC CORDERO

MACAU – Manny Pacquiao respects Brandon Rios as a fighter and as a person. He said he’s aware of all the work the younger Mexican-American put in training.

But if Rios, who’s in the biggest fight of his career, thinks he can beat Pacquiao and force the Filipino into retirement, he better think twice.

“I’m not underestimating him. I know he worked hard in training,” Pacquiao said before a noontime workout yesterday at The Venetian here.

“But this is not the time,” he added.

Pacquiao is coming off back-to-back defeats, a questionable decision against Tim Bradley in June last year and a stunning knockout to Juan Manuel Marquez last December.

It’s been 11 months since he last fought, and during the period, questions were raised whether Pacquiao has put the crushing knockout behind.

Sportshub ( Article MRec ), pagematch: 1, sectionmatch: 1

People started doubting if he’s still the same fighter who loves beating bigger guys.

Pacquiao said he’s not done yet, and the knockout loss to Marquez, which came with only one second left in the sixth round, is part of boxing.

“I did my best but that’s boxing. It happens. And I lost the fight,” he said yesterday.

Pacquiao said retirement is not in his mind right now although his chief trainer said if he loses to Rios or struggles with a win, they might talk about retirement.

But this is not the time.

“I’m still hungry to fight,” Pacquiao said as he taped his hands and sat on a chair in front of mediamen who came to watch him train.

Other than boxing, Pacquiao also talked about the recent typhoon that ravaged the southern part of the Philippines, left thousands dead and many more suffering.

Pacquiao has already decided to cut short his stay here. Instead of flying home Tuesday, he leaves for Manila on board a chartered PAL plane the day after the fight.

Whatever happens inside the ring.

“After the fight I will go to Tacloban and stay there for a few days,” he said.

It’s just five days before he locks horns with Rios, a certified slugger, and inside the ring he looked sharp hitting the mitts with his trainer

Pacquiao said he’s ready for anything Rios will bring on fight night, whether he chooses to engage, go toe-to-toe or keep his distance.

“We are studying different strategies. If he fights toe to toe it’s okay. I’m prepared for that. I’m not focusing on one style,” Pacquiao said.

Rios trains earlier than Pacquiao and had left the room, where a boxing ring was put up, before Pacquiao came in.

The other day he said he’s ready for the fight and told Pinoy scribes that Pacquiao picked the wrong fight.

Pacquiao is out to prove him wrong.

FROM THE INQUIRER

Not too many congressmen keen on Pacquiao fight By Gil C. Cabacungan Philippine Daily Inquirer 5:09 am | Wednesday, November 20th, 2013

MANILA, Philippines—“Yolanda” has apparently knocked out the craving of Filipino lawmakers for ringside seats when Manny Pacquiao fights the American Brandon Rios in Macau on Sunday.

Speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr. said Tuesday only a dozen members of the House of Representatives had sought permission to fly to Asia’s casino center to watch what some pundits claim could be the Saranggani lawmaker’s last fight.

Pacquiao’s coach, Freddie Roach, has said Pacquiao should retire if he loses to Rios.

Appetite lost

Belmonte said more lawmakers might go and watch the fight—they could use their regular passports for unofficial travel—but he doubted they would be significant in number.

“I don’t think many members are inclined to go to Macau this weekend. I think they’ve lost their appetite, especially with the suffering of millions in Leyte and Samar,” Belmonte said.

The Speaker offered to give reporters the five tickets he had received from Pacquiao. But no one accepted the offer.

There were reports that between 60 and 70 lawmakers had been given free tickets by Pacquiao but Belmonte could not confirm this.

Belmonte said there had been expectations that Filipino lawmakers would constitute a big contingent at Cotai Arena in Macau, considering it was just a two-hour flight away from Manila.

“But in the light of events last week, I think our members are sensitive to the plight of the [typhoon] victims,” he said.

Pay per view
Negros Occidental Rep. Alfredo Benitez agreed with Belmonte that most lawmakers would rather stay home and watch Pacquiao’s fight on pay-per-view.

“I planned on watching, too, but then Yolanda struck so I decided to just stay home and help in the relief operations,” Benitez said.

Benitez plans on joining a group of lawmakers in a mercy mission to Samar this Friday.

Caloocan Rep. Edgar Erice said he got four free tickets from Pacquiao and he planned on using them with his family.

“I’ve done my part in the relief operations and I think Pacquiao needs some support. My family deserves a vacation, too,” Erice said.

Good fight

Pacquiao himself was torn between visiting the devastated towns of Leyte, where his mother, Dionisia, comes from, but he was not allowed by his trainers to do so since his fight was nearing.

“I am going to deliver additional assistance there,” Pacquiao said before leaving for Macau on Monday.

“In fact, I will be visiting the victims soon to at least uplift their spirits. I will do that immediately after my fight.”

“His bout was fast approaching, that’s why we told him to do it after Macau,” said Pacquiao’s assistant trainer, Buboy Fernandez.

Pacquiao promised to put up a good fight to inspire the people affected by the disaster and the Filipino nation in general.—With a report by Aquiles Z. Zonio, Inquirer Mindanao


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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