ROACH TO PASTORS: LEAVE MANNY ALONE FOR NOW

Freddie Roach says pastors have been visiting Manny Pacquiao at odd hours, when his ward is supposed to be resting in preparation for his rematch with Timothy Bradley this Sunday. With just a few days left before Manny Pacquiao’s rematch with Timothy Bradley, trainer Freddie Roach has his ward right where he wants him to be, conditioning-wise. Roach believes they got all bases covered to score a victory over Bradley this Sunday at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. Everything is looking good for the Filipino icon, except for a few distractions. Those distractions, according to Roach, come in the form of religious pastors who have began surrounding Pacquiao. In an interview with Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated, Roach said the pastors have been standing in the way of Pacquiao’s resting time. His message to the individuals is clear: Let Pacquiao rest for now. “I think the biggest problem right now is these pastors keep coming around at odd hours to have him (Pacquiao) pray. When he is sleeping, you have to leave him alone. I do,” Roach told Mannix. It’s no secret that Pacquiao has been a religious man from the beginning, but he has since reinforced his dedication to his faith by frequently hosting Bible studies and associating himself with a slew of pastors. “I'm not happy with those guys so much, but that is his choice. I'm not going to go babysit,” Roach continued.

ALSO: Bradley finds Pacquiao lacking before rematch; Pacman's pastor wants him up at 5 am to pray everyday.

Manny Pacquiao's latest pastor wants him up at 5 a.m. every day for prayers. The eight-division champion sometimes has 100 people and a yappy dog named Pacman in his home after training sessions, playing darts and carousing into the night. Even during a hiatus from his duties as a Filipino congressman, it's tough to see how a great boxer could keep his focus and fire amid Pacquiao's hectic life and long career. According to Timothy Bradley, Pacquiao can't do it. "When was the last time you saw him knock somebody out?" Bradley asked, knowing it's been nearly five years. "He's not the same guy. He's more compassionate, more kind. That spark isn't there. That's not good for a boxer." READ MORE......

ALSO: Pacquiao hits Vegas all fired-up

His coming rematch with Timothy Bradley marks the 15th time that Manny Pacquiao is doing a fight in this city where anything can happen. It's his 15th fight here since June 23, 2001 when as a late replacement he knocked out then IBF super-bantamweight champion Lehlo Ledwaba. Pacquiao, young and skinny, fought in the undercard of Oscar dela Hoya's show. Nobody knew him then. Saturday's 12-round bout for Bradley's WBO welterweight title will also mark Pacquiao's 10th stint at the MGM Grand where he won some of his biggest fights. Las Vegas or MGM is second home to Pacquiao. Yet, after settling in inside his luxurious suite on the 61st floor of Mandalay Bay, the 35-year-old boxing legend said it felt like it was his first time here. "It feels like when I was starting out and I wanted to become a world champion," said Pacquiao as he sat on a velvet sofa, in a black leather jacket, blue jeans and Converse shoes.

ALSO: Mommy D sees son's KO win

Mommy Dionisia was not alone when she raised a howl after the judges awarded the victory to Timothy Bradley in June 2012. She felt that her son, Filipino boxing icon Manny Pacquiao, was robbed of a win. Mommy Dionisia said Monday she'd do the same in case of a similar result for Saturday's WBO welterweight title fight between Pacquiao and Bradley. "Mag-sigaw ulit ako sa ring (I will shout at them)," said the boxer's famous mother popularly known as "Mommy D." The other day, she was asked of her thoughts in the coming fight but all she did was cover her mouth with her left hand. It was like she didn't want to say anything and would rather keep her thoughts to herself. But she motioned with her hand as if saying somebody will fall or that somebody will get knocked out. Mommy D loves to watch her son fight from ringside, and in one incident she suffered an anxiety attack and had to be taken to the hospital. If she decides against watching the fight live, she'd stay in her hotel room to pray the rosary. On Monday, Mommy D took the front seat of the Team Pacquiao bus that took more than five hours to get to Las Vegas from Los Angeles. Again, she was asked of her thoughts. "Ayoko na mag-predict (I don't want to make a prediction)," she said. But when reminded of the 2012 incident, she broke her silence by saying she didn't like what the judges did on that night. "Hindi tama ang ginawa nila (What they did was wrong)," she said. "Madaya (Cheat)," added Mommy D.


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Roach to pastors: Leave Manny alone for now


Freddie Roach says pastors have been visiting Manny Pacquiao at odd hours, when his ward is supposed to be resting in preparation for his rematch with Timothy Bradley this Sunday. File photo

MANILA, APRIL 14, 2014, (PHILSTAR) By Dino Maragay - With just a few days left before Manny Pacquiao’s rematch with Timothy Bradley, trainer Freddie Roach has his ward right where he wants him to be, conditioning-wise.

Roach believes they got all bases covered to score a victory over Bradley this Sunday at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.

Everything is looking good for the Filipino icon, except for a few distractions.

Those distractions, according to Roach, come in the form of religious pastors who have began surrounding Pacquiao.

In an interview with Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated, Roach said the pastors have been standing in the way of Pacquiao’s resting time.

His message to the individuals is clear: Let Pacquiao rest for now.

“I think the biggest problem right now is these pastors keep coming around at odd hours to have him (Pacquiao) pray. When he is sleeping, you have to leave him alone. I do,” Roach told Mannix.

“When he is sleeping, you have to leave him alone. I wait hours for the guy if he is sleeping. If he is sleeping, he must need it,” he added.

It’s no secret that Pacquiao has been a religious man from the beginning, but he has since reinforced his dedication to his faith by frequently hosting Bible studies and associating himself with a slew of pastors.

While Roach initially saw no problem with it, the trainer is bothered that the preachers are depriving his ward of some much-needed rest, especially now that the fight is just a few days away.

“I'm not happy with those guys so much, but that is his choice. I'm not going to go babysit,” Roach continued.

Bradley finds Pacquiao lacking before rematch By Greg Beacham (Associated Press) | Updated April 11, 2014 - 2:18pm 22 409 googleplus0 0


FILE - In this Feb. 6, 2014 file photo, boxer Manny Pacquiao, of the Phillipines, left, poses for a photo with current WBO World Welterweight champion Timothy Bradley of Indio, Ca., during a press conference in New York. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)

LOS ANGELES — Manny Pacquiao's latest pastor wants him up at 5 a.m. every day for prayers. The eight-division champion sometimes has 100 people and a yappy dog named Pacman in his home after training sessions, playing darts and carousing into the night.

Even during a hiatus from his duties as a Filipino congressman, it's tough to see how a great boxer could keep his focus and fire amid Pacquiao's hectic life and long career.

According to Timothy Bradley, Pacquiao can't do it.

"When was the last time you saw him knock somebody out?" Bradley asked, knowing it's been nearly five years. "He's not the same guy. He's more compassionate, more kind. That spark isn't there. That's not good for a boxer."

Bradley isn't afraid to voice unpopular opinions. After all, he's one of the few prominent boxing observers who believe he actually won his first fight with Pacquiao two years ago, a split decision that sent Bradley on a wild career loop of his own.

When Bradley (31-0, 12 KOs) repeatedly declares Pacquiao has lost his killer instinct and competitive fire heading into their highly anticipated welterweight rematch Saturday in Las Vegas, he realizes it could motivate Pacquiao to produce his best performance in years. Sportshub ( Article MRec ), pagematch: 1, sectionmatch: 1

He claims he simply doesn't care what Pacquiao (55-5-2, 38 KOs) thinks or does with that bulletin-board material, and that might be Bradley's greatest indictment of all.

"It wouldn't affect him if he didn't believe it," Bradley told The Associated Press. "He definitely started thinking, 'Maybe I am too nice. Maybe I have lost my fire.' He started second-guessing himself and really thinking about it. Freddie (Roach) should thank me for saying that. If he gets offended by it, he needs to check himself. Maybe he got a reality check."

Roach believes that check will get cashed at the MGM Grand Garden. Pacquiao's longtime trainer insists he sees signs of the hellacious puncher who captivated the boxing world during a 15-fight winning streak before that hotly disputed loss to Bradley.

"I think he's really winding my guy up to be explosive in this fight, so I thank him for that," Roach said. "Manny feels like he's being disrespected, like it's a little bit of a slap in the face."

For the first time in several camps, Pacquiao knocked down a sparring partner at Roach's Wild Card Boxing Club. For the first time in ages, Pacquiao is talking about inflicting pain rather than minimizing it.

"He's very religious right now, but he has mentioned during the mitts and so forth that if he hurts this guy, he'll finish him," Roach told the AP. "He showed me the combination he'll use. I like that, because he's talking about hurting people for the first time in a long time. I think that hunger is back a little bit."

When Pacquiao is asked about Bradley's bold declarations, he doesn't respond in kind. While Roach insists Pacquiao knows and cares about the perceived disrespect, he doesn't engage in verbal sparring.

"Maybe I'm too nice and too kind in the ring sometimes," Pacquiao said while wrapping his hands for his final Wild Card workout earlier this week. "Maybe I'll try to change it."

After nearly a year away, Pacquiao looked solid last fall in a clear-cut victory over Brandon Rios. But Pacquiao's inability to stop a defense-deficient opponent stoked the discussion about whether Pacquiao's most dynamic days are over.

"I couldn't believe it when I saw him take a backwards step in the 12th round," said Bradley, who has stopped just one opponent himself in the last seven years. "He didn't try to engage. He didn't try to finish. I had never seen that from Manny Pacquiao before. It's amazing to me."

Pacquiao will fight without his wife, Jinkee, at ringside for the first time since his career moved stateside. She is home in the Philippines, due to give birth later this month to their fifth child, a boy to be named Israel.

Roach is used to the Pacquiao circus by now, and he remained patient with Pacquiao's myriad distractions even after a knockout loss to Juan Manuel Marquez in late 2012. The trainer steadfastly believes his prize pupil is still capable of the remarkable feats that got him to the top.

Still, Roach raised an eyebrow when he heard about daily pre-dawn prayer sessions with the latest in a dizzying line of spiritual advisers to the increasingly pious boxer's camp.

"I told the pastor to stop waking him up so early," Roach said with a smile. "I told him, 'I thought God was with us at all times, not just 5 a.m.'"

Pacquiao hits Vegas all fired-up By Abac Cordero Updated Wednesday April 09, 2014 - 12:00am 1 0Google +0 0


Pacquiao spends time on chess, darts. Manny Pacquiao ponders his move in a game of chess. ABAC CORDERO

LAS VEGAS: His coming rematch with Timothy Bradley marks the 15th time that Manny Pacquiao is doing a fight in this city where anything can happen.

It's his 15th fight here since June 23, 2001 when as a late replacement he knocked out then IBF super-bantamweight champion Lehlo Ledwaba.

Pacquiao, young and skinny, fought in the undercard of Oscar dela Hoya's show.

Nobody knew him then.

Saturday's 12-round bout for Bradley's WBO welterweight title will also mark Pacquiao's 10th stint at the MGM Grand where he won some of his biggest fights.

Las Vegas or MGM is second home to Pacquiao.

Yet, after settling in inside his luxurious suite on the 61st floor of Mandalay Bay, the 35-year-old boxing legend said it felt like it was his first time here.

"It feels like when I was starting out and I wanted to become a world champion," said Pacquiao as he sat on a velvet sofa, in a black leather jacket, blue jeans and Converse shoes.

"Parang ito yung break ko na lumaban ako para sa championship (It's like my break for the world title)," added Pacquiao.

The last time he fought here in Vegas, in December of 2012, he was knocked out by Juan Manuel Marquez also at the MGM.

Prior to the loss to his Mexican foe, Pacquiao dropped a controversial decision to Bradley. But he has moved on with a lopsided win over Brandon Rios in Macau just five months ago.

"Excited ako. Masaya tayo," he said.

Pacquiao sparred four rounds at the Wild Card Gym in Los Angeles at noontime before boarding an elegant SUV for a four-hour drive to Las Vegas.

Joining the Filipino congressman in the pilgrimage was more than a hundred family members and friends in a convoy that included a huge bus, with 56 passengers, and dozens of vehicles.

Pacquiao welcomed everybody to his suite where a buffet of favorite Filipino dishes lay on a table.

Pacquiao's pet, a Jack Russel, roamed the suite.

"I'm really excited. I'm a hundred percent ready," said the only boxer in history to win world titles in eight different weight classes.

Monday's two-hour workout at the Wild Card Gym capped a month-long training in LA. Sessions were held mostly behind closed doors.

Here in Vegas, five days to the fight, Pacquiao will have a couple more visits to the gym. On Friday, the official weigh-in will take place at the Grand Garden Arena.

Maintain na lang," Pacquiao said.

Mommy D sees son's KO win By Abac Cordero -


Mommy Dionisia ABAC CORDERO

LAS VEGAS: Mommy Dionisia was not alone when she raised a howl after the judges awarded the victory to Timothy Bradley in June 2012.

She felt that her son, Filipino boxing icon Manny Pacquiao, was robbed of a win.

Mommy Dionisia said Monday she'd do the same in case of a similar result for Saturday's WBO welterweight title fight between Pacquiao and Bradley.

"Mag-sigaw ulit ako sa ring (I will shout at them)," said the boxer's famous mother popularly known as "Mommy D."

The other day, she was asked of her thoughts in the coming fight but all she did was cover her mouth with her left hand.

It was like she didn't want to say anything and would rather keep her thoughts to herself.

But she motioned with her hand as if saying somebody will fall or that somebody will get knocked out.

Mommy D loves to watch her son fight from ringside, and in one incident she suffered an anxiety attack and had to be taken to the hospital.

If she decides against watching the fight live, she'd stay in her hotel room to pray the rosary.

On Monday, Mommy D took the front seat of the Team Pacquiao bus that took more than five hours to get to Las Vegas from Los Angeles.

Again, she was asked of her thoughts.

"Ayoko na mag-predict (I don't want to make a prediction)," she said.

But when reminded of the 2012 incident, she broke her silence by saying she didn't like what the judges did on that night.

"Hindi tama ang ginawa nila (What they did was wrong)," she said.

"Madaya (Cheat)," added Mommy D.


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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