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SPORTS NEWS THE PAST WEEKS
(Mini Reads followed by Full Reports below)

'THE GREATEST' RETURNS HOME FOR THE LAST TIME


JUNE 11 -Muhammad Ali’s casket arrives at Freedom Hall for his Jenazah, a traditional Islamic Muslim service, Thursday in Louisville, Kentucky. AP
LOUISVILLE, KENTUCKY - Muhammad Ali will return to his old Kentucky neighborhood one last time. Ali’s body will ride in a miles-long procession spanning his life – from his boyhood home where he shadowboxed and dreamed of greatness to the boulevard that bears his name and the museum that stands as a lasting tribute to his boxing triumphs and his humanitarian causes outside the ring. Related Stories The sounds of the greatest Louisville is accustomed to being in the limelight each May when the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs captures the world’s attention. But the send-off for the three-time heavyweight champion and global advocate for social justice looms as one of the city’s most historic events. “We’ve all been dreading the passing of The Champ, but at the same time we knew ultimately it would come,” Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer said. “It was selfish for us to think that we could hold on to him forever. Our job now, as a city, is to send him off with the class and dignity and respect that he deserves.” Ali died last Friday at 74 after a long battle with Parkinson’s disease. The procession and memorial service follow a traditional Muslim funeral service held Thursday afternoon. The faithful traveled from all over the world to pay their respects. Thousands more are expected to line the procession route Friday to wave a final goodbye to the city’s favorite son. The motorcade will begin at the funeral home and head north onto the interstate. It will pause briefly as it overlooks the Muhammad Ali Center in the heart of downtown. The cars will head west onto Muhammad Ali Boulevard, pass the Kentucky Center for African-American Heritage and visit his childhood home on Grand Avenue. Then it will turn toward his final resting place. Officials predict a 90-minute tour. The procession ends at Cave Hill Cemetery where his family and closest friends will gather for a private burial. READ MORE...

ALSO: Pacquiao plummets to No. 63 in Forbes' list of top paid athletes


JUNE 11 -Manny Pacquiao prior to his match with Timothy Bradley last April at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas AP
From his lofty status at second place in 2015, Manny Pacquiao plunged to No. 63 in Forbes’ list of highest paid athletes for this year. Pacquiao owed his high ranking last year to his megabuck showdown with Floyd Mayweather Jr. in May last year, which ended up as boxing’s richest fight ever. The Filipino lost that fight, and an injured shoulder forced him to sit out the rest of 2015. “Pacquiao's fight with Floyd Mayweather in May 2015 set every financial record in the history of boxing, including PPV buys (4.6 million), gate ($73 million) and total revenue ($600 million), and rewarded him with a $125 million payday,” Forbes wrote in its entry on Pacquiao. For this year, however, Pacquiao fought only once – defeating Timothy Bradley in April – before announcing his retirement. Forbes noted that Pacquiao took home a total of $25 million for this year, including $24 million in salary and $2.5 million in endorsements. The boxer is now a member of the Philippine senate after a successful run in the May elections. “Manny Pacquiao says he is retired ‘as of now’ after his April bout with Timothy Bradley where he banked a $20 million purse plus his cut of Filipino TV money,” Forbes continued. “He's earned $500 million during this career from purses, pay-per-view and endorsements. Pacquiao was elected to the Filipino Senate in May after first being elected to the House of Representatives,” it added. Forbes also stressed how Pacquiao’s recent controversial stance on same-sex relations affected his endorsements, with Nike among the biggest backers to sever ties with him. READ MORE...

ALSO: FREEMAN EDITORIAL - Professionals will eventually kill the Olympics


JUNE 11 -World boxing superstar and now Philippine senator Manny Pacquiao will not go to Rio and try to win for the country its first ever gold. Pacquiao, lambasted for his lackluster performance as a congressman, said it is far more important for him now to make good in the Senate. Besides, if he changes his mind, which he does very often, it will probably be too late to get into shape for the Olympics, which for the first time has opened the door for the participation of professional boxers.
Another Filipino champion, Nonito Donaire, has a more sensible reason for refusing to fight in the Olympics. Donaire simply finds it unfair for professionals to be pitted against amateurs. It is this point of view that brings us to the core issue of why, indeed, is the Olympics, which normally was reserved only for amateur athletes, now starting to get wide open for professionals. Related Stories Inayawan shines in weekly CCSC dancefest The Olympics first allowed professionals in basketball in Barcelona in 1992, largely because of the insistence of the United States, which almost always gets its way with anything. Except for one college player, the United States sent in an all-NBA team, which naturally swept all its assignments on its way to a sure gold. That the team demolished its opponents by very wide margins demonstrated the unfair disparity between professionals and amateurs. But opposition to the sudden turn of events in 1992 was largely muted because the whole world was too mesmerized by the composition of the US Dream Team it actually forgot to complain. For who could complain against the greatest basketball team ever assembled - David Robinson, Patrick Ewing, Larry Bird, Scottie Pippen, Michael Jordan, Clyde Drexler, Karl Malone, John Stockton, Chris Mullin, Charles Barkley, Magic Johnson, and the lone amateur Christian Laettner. READ MORE...

ALSO: PROFILES - Gilas Pilipinas Final 14 for Fiba Olympic Qualifiers


JUNE 12 --Battles are won with the most valiant soldiers. When the Philippines takes a shot at playing in the grandest sporting stage in the world, these players will go war against the toughest opponents with millions of Filipinos rallying behind them. They face some of the world’s best in the Fiba Olympic Qualifying tournament, the country’s last chance to make the Rio Olympics, in July but for these Gilas Pilipinas standouts, no adversity is greater than their heart.
After months of training and careful deliberation from the coaching staff, 14 players have made to the homestretch of preparations for the Olympic qualifiers with less than a month away. Here’s a look at the last men standing for the PH national team. READ MORE...

ALSO: Gilas Pilipinas arrives in Greece for Europe camp


JUNE 12 -
The Philippine men’s national basketball team on Saturday (Manila time) arrived in Athens, Greece to begin the most crucial part of its buildup for the Fiba Olympic qualifying tournament.Gilas Pilipinas, which left Manila Friday night, will hold a 10-day training camp in Karpenisi, a town in central Greece about a three and a half hour drive from the Greek capital Athens.“Touchdown Athens,” Gilas assistant coach Josh Reyes posted on his Twitter account.
From Greece, Gilas will continue its camp in Istanbul, Turkey where the team will play the Turkish national team in a tune-up game.The last stop of Gilas’ European trip is in Bologna, Italy where the Nationals will take part in a four-nation pocket tournament against the hosts, China and Canada.Canada remains one of the favorites to win the Manila qualifiers slated on July 5 despite the decision of its star Andrew Wiggins to skip the tournament.Gilas is expected to return home on June 28. The team opens its bid for a slot in the Rio Olympics against heavyweight France.READ MORE...


READ FULL MEDIA REPORTS HERE:

‘The Greatest’ returns home for the last time 0 Share (Associated Press) - June 11, 2016 - 12:00am


Muhammad Ali’s casket arrives at Freedom Hall for his Jenazah, a traditional Islamic Muslim service, Thursday in Louisville, Kentucky. AP

LOUISVILLE, KENTUCKY, JUNE 13, 2016 (PHILSTAR) Muhammad Ali will return to his old Kentucky neighborhood one last time.

Ali’s body will ride in a miles-long procession spanning his life – from his boyhood home where he shadowboxed and dreamed of greatness to the boulevard that bears his name and the museum that stands as a lasting tribute to his boxing triumphs and his humanitarian causes outside the ring.

Related Stories The sounds of the greatest Louisville is accustomed to being in the limelight each May when the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs captures the world’s attention. But the send-off for the three-time heavyweight champion and global advocate for social justice looms as one of the city’s most historic events.

“We’ve all been dreading the passing of The Champ, but at the same time we knew ultimately it would come,” Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer said. “It was selfish for us to think that we could hold on to him forever. Our job now, as a city, is to send him off with the class and dignity and respect that he deserves.”

Ali died last Friday at 74 after a long battle with Parkinson’s disease. The procession and memorial service follow a traditional Muslim funeral service held Thursday afternoon. The faithful traveled from all over the world to pay their respects.

Thousands more are expected to line the procession route Friday to wave a final goodbye to the city’s favorite son. The motorcade will begin at the funeral home and head north onto the interstate. It will pause briefly as it overlooks the Muhammad Ali Center in the heart of downtown.

The cars will head west onto Muhammad Ali Boulevard, pass the Kentucky Center for African-American Heritage and visit his childhood home on Grand Avenue. Then it will turn toward his final resting place. Officials predict a 90-minute tour.

The procession ends at Cave Hill Cemetery where his family and closest friends will gather for a private burial.

READ MORE...

At 2 p.m., thousands will gather at the KFC Yum Center a final send-off befitting The Greatest.

The service will feature a eulogy by former President Bill Clinton, a longtime friend, and remarks by comedian Billy Crystal, television journalist Bryant Gumbel and the champ’s wife, Lonnie. The king of Jordan and president of Turkey will attend.

President Barack Obama was unable to make the trip because his daughter, Malia, is graduating from high school. Valerie Jarrett, a senior White House adviser, will read a letter Obama wrote to Ali’s family at the service.

The memorial is expected to draw 15,000 people and will bookend a weeklong series of planned services and spontaneous celebrations.

The Ali Center stopped charging people for admission.


Thousands gather for Muslim funeral honoring Muhammad Ali Fans lined up taking photographs as the casket with the body of the late boxing champion Muhammad Ali is brought for his jenazah, an Islamic funeral prayer, in Louisville,Kentucky REUTERS

A tour company began impromptu tours of Ali’s path through the city. Businesses printed his quotes across their billboards. City buses flashed “Ali – The Greatest” in orange lights across their marquees. A downtown bridge said it would be lit the rest of the week in red and gold: red for his gloves and gold for his medal.

How can the storied life of a man revered by fans worldwide be encapsulated in a two-hour service? As it turns out, Ali called the shots.

Years ago, the champ signed off on how he wished to say goodbye to the world. One of his mandates was that ordinary fans attend, not just VIPs. Thousands of free tickets were snatched up within an hour, many fans waiting hours for the chance to witness history.

“Everybody feels a sense of loss with Ali’s passing,” said Mustafa Abdush-Shakur, who traveled from Connecticut to pay tribute to him. “But there’s no need to be sad for him. We’re all going to make that trip.”


PHILSTAR

Pacquiao plummets to No. 63 in Forbes' list of top paid athletes 0 Share Dino Maragay (philstar.com) - June 9, 2016 - 2:30pm


Manny Pacquiao prior to his match with Timothy Bradley last April at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas AP

MANILA, Philippines – From his lofty status at second place in 2015, Manny Pacquiao plunged to No. 63 in Forbes’ list of highest paid athletes for this year.

Pacquiao owed his high ranking last year to his megabuck showdown with Floyd Mayweather Jr. in May last year, which ended up as boxing’s richest fight ever. The Filipino lost that fight, and an injured shoulder forced him to sit out the rest of 2015.

“Pacquiao's fight with Floyd Mayweather in May 2015 set every financial record in the history of boxing, including PPV buys (4.6 million), gate ($73 million) and total revenue ($600 million), and rewarded him with a $125 million payday,” Forbes wrote in its entry on Pacquiao.

For this year, however, Pacquiao fought only once – defeating Timothy Bradley in April – before announcing his retirement. Forbes noted that Pacquiao took home a total of $25 million for this year, including $24 million in salary and $2.5 million in endorsements.

The boxer is now a member of the Philippine senate after a successful run in the May elections.

“Manny Pacquiao says he is retired ‘as of now’ after his April bout with Timothy Bradley where he banked a $20 million purse plus his cut of Filipino TV money,” Forbes continued.

“He's earned $500 million during this career from purses, pay-per-view and endorsements. Pacquiao was elected to the Filipino Senate in May after first being elected to the House of Representatives,” it added.

Forbes also stressed how Pacquiao’s recent controversial stance on same-sex relations affected his endorsements, with Nike among the biggest backers to sever ties with him.

READ MORE...

“He was once a marketing darling with companies like Nike, Foot Locker, Hewlett-Packard and Nestle, but companies avoided the eight division world champ after his 2016 comments comparing gay people to animals,” the financial media firm said.

For his part, Mayweather, who topped the list last year, dropped to No. 16 with $44 million in earnings. He retired after fighting Andre Berto in September last year.

Football superstars Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi finished at first and second place with total earnings of $88 million and $81.4 million, respectively.

Rounding up the top 10 are NBA superstar LeBron James (No. 3, $77.2 million), tennis star Roger Federer (No. 4, $67.8 million), NBA’s Kevin Durant (No. 5, $56.2 million), Serbian World No. 1 tennis player Novak Djokovic (No. 6, $55.8 million), NFL star Cam Newton (No. 7, $53.1 million), golfers Phil Mickelson (No. 8, $52.9 million) and Jordan Spieth (No. 9, $52.8 million), and recently retired NBA star Kobe Bryant (No. 10 $50 million).


FREEMAN EDITORIAL (PHILSTAR)

EDITORIAL - Professionals will eventually kill the Olympics 0 Share (The Freeman) - June 8, 2016 - 12:00am

World boxing superstar and now Philippine senator Manny Pacquiao will not go to Rio and try to win for the country its first ever gold. Pacquiao, lambasted for his lackluster performance as a congressman, said it is far more important for him now to make good in the Senate. Besides, if he changes his mind, which he does very often, it will probably be too late to get into shape for the Olympics, which for the first time has opened the door for the participation of professional boxers.

Another Filipino champion, Nonito Donaire, has a more sensible reason for refusing to fight in the Olympics. Donaire simply finds it unfair for professionals to be pitted against amateurs. It is this point of view that brings us to the core issue of why, indeed, is the Olympics, which normally was reserved only for amateur athletes, now starting to get wide open for professionals.

Related Stories Inayawan shines in weekly CCSC dancefest The Olympics first allowed professionals in basketball in Barcelona in 1992, largely because of the insistence of the United States, which almost always gets its way with anything. Except for one college player, the United States sent in an all-NBA team, which naturally swept all its assignments on its way to a sure gold. That the team demolished its opponents by very wide margins demonstrated the unfair disparity between professionals and amateurs.

But opposition to the sudden turn of events in 1992 was largely muted because the whole world was too mesmerized by the composition of the US Dream Team it actually forgot to complain. For who could complain against the greatest basketball team ever assembled - David Robinson, Patrick Ewing, Larry Bird, Scottie Pippen, Michael Jordan, Clyde Drexler, Karl Malone, John Stockton, Chris Mullin, Charles Barkley, Magic Johnson, and the lone amateur Christian Laettner.

READ MORE...

Instead of complaining, the world gushed and marveled at the US Dream Team. So enamored was everybody that even rival teams took time out to pose for pictures with the Americans before and after every game. The outcomes became a foregone conclusion as each game became a virtual exhibition. Who would want to guard a Michael Jordan, for instance, when the impulse was to embrace him?

Other games soon followed, like tennis in London in 2012 where big money players long used to the pressures of professional play romped off with the medals, like Andy Murray who won the men's singles gold for the host country against the Swiss Roger Federer. Even athletics has been thrown wide open to professional runners whose skills have not only made them winners and famous but fabulously rich as well, both from sports earnings and from commercial endorsements.

But for countries with skewed sports development programs and priorities like the Philippines, the opening up of more Olympics sports to professional athletes becomes doubly disadvantageous. True, in boxing which offers the Philippines its only realistic chance for Olympic medals, we may have some of the best professional fighters. But so do other countries. If Pacquiao changes his mind, there is no guarantee the US will not send in Floyd Mayweather Jr. So who loses? The Olympics.


INQUIRER

PROFILES: Gilas Pilipinas Final 14 for Fiba Olympic Qualifiers SHARES: 248 VIEW COMMENTS
@inquirerdotnet INQUIRER.net 08:31 PM June 11th, 2016


NORWOOD

Battles are won with the most valiant soldiers.

When the Philippines takes a shot at playing in the grandest sporting stage in the world, these players will go war against the toughest opponents with millions of Filipinos rallying behind them.

They face some of the world’s best in the Fiba Olympic Qualifying tournament, the country’s last chance to make the Rio Olympics, in July but for these Gilas Pilipinas standouts, no adversity is greater than their heart.

After months of training and careful deliberation from the coaching staff, 14 players have made to the homestretch of preparations for the Olympic qualifiers with less than a month away.

Here’s a look at the last men standing for the PH national team.
(Words by Mark Giongco; Graphics by Tristan Tamayo)


CASTRO


BLATCHE


ABUEVA


AGUILAR


PARKS


FAJARDO
 


PINGRIS
 


TENORIO
 


CHAN


DE OCAMPO
 


ROMEO


ROSARIO


REYES


INQUIRER

Gilas Pilipinas arrives in Greece for Europe camp SHARES: 270 VIEW COMMENTS By: Mark Giongco
@MGiongcoINQ INQUIRER.net 02:45 PM June 11th, 2016


Photo taken from Josh Reyes’ Instagram account.

The Philippine men’s national basketball team on Saturday (Manila time) arrived in Athens, Greece to begin the most crucial part of its buildup for the Fiba Olympic qualifying tournament.

Gilas Pilipinas, which left Manila Friday night, will hold a 10-day training camp in Karpenisi, a town in central Greece about a three and a half hour drive from the Greek capital Athens.

“Touchdown Athens,” Gilas assistant coach Josh Reyes posted on his Twitter account.

From Greece, Gilas will continue its camp in Istanbul, Turkey where the team will play the Turkish national team in a tune-up game.

The last stop of Gilas’ European trip is in Bologna, Italy where the Nationals will take part in a four-nation pocket tournament against the hosts, China and Canada.

Canada remains one of the favorites to win the Manila qualifiers slated on July 5 despite the decision of its star Andrew Wiggins to skip the tournament.

Gilas is expected to return home on June 28. The team opens its bid for a slot in the Rio Olympics against heavyweight France.


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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