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Fight of the Century: Accepting Defeat



This is not even about Manny Pacquiao losing to Floyd Mayweather alone. This is about the Filipino losing against… well, the other side of the unnecessary, and oftentimes below the belt, reactions that come after.

It may have something to do with the collective passion to support the three stars and the sun.

After all, who doesn’t love unity?

It’s always Pilipinas against the world.

Us against them.

This side against we-don’t-care-who.

But racial slurs, derogatory comments, (Gayweather, ‘luto’ because it was held in America, and the like) and extra-curriculars?

These are post-fight stuff that should never be tolerated in this modern era.

To understand the “sweet science” of boxing, means to spend years studying the sport and appreciating what the best fighters have brought to the square ring of champions.

Understandably, the average fans wanted to see more “action” as their typical notion of boxing is plain fighting, engaging, and trying make a bloody mess out of one’s opponent’s face.

This, however, isn’t your ancient, kill or be killed type of brawling. There is a lot science involved. You have to use techniques and train for months to perfect your craft.

Floyd Mayweather (48 wins, 0 losses) is one of the best boxers and for 48 times, he won by dominating his foe in an array of ways.

It goes way beyond plain punching and hurting. It goes beyond trying to knock your opponents out using brute force. Make no mistake, Mayweather has been rocked several times in past matches against Ricky Hatton, Shane Mosley, Miguel Cotto, and Marcos Maidana, but there is a reason why he is still undefeated until now.

To underscore the beauty of Mayweather’s victories, one must have to appreciate the sport itself. What he does inside the ring is technical brilliance — a wizardry we do not see that often, and something we do not easily appreciate for its “uneventfulness.”

But boxing isn’t all about brawling. It involves defense, aggressiveness, and ring generalship.

For about two decades, Mayweather validated the essence of boxing: hit without being hit. For 48 times, he did it in style.

What he did against Pacquiao wasn’t new; it was what he wanted from the moment the opening bell sounded. It’s what makes him one of the generational greats.

Sure, it was boring, but for those who truly understand the beauty of boxing, it was a bliss, a once in a generation match-up that made Pacquiao, the only eight-division world boxing champion (and playing head coach, congressman, actor, singer, you name it) look ordinary.

One of the most relentless fighters who transcended the sport, Pacquiao had a difficult time landing against one of the best defensive fighters in the planet. Only 19 percent of his total punches landed per CompuBox. Mayweather landed 35 percent. In power punches, Mayweather had a staggering advantage — 47 percent to 26 percent. Pacquiao threw almost 60 more power punches than Mayweather, but was still left biting the dust.

There were moments of hope when Pacquiao connected on strong left hands, and forced Mayweather against the corner or against the ropes, but it was too easy for the world’s highest paid athlete to get out of trouble.

In the end, the game plan did not work, and Pacquiao, as much as people love him being aggressive and trying to get into his opponent’s defense, did not succeed in the mission.

Not a long time ago, Filipino fans also criticized Juan Manuel Marquez for allegedly stepping on Pacquiao’s foot excessively. But it also happens the other way around, because of the respective fighters’ stance — a thing easy to understand yet people didn’t even seem to bother making an effort to know about it.

Years back, Nonito Donaire lost a decision to Gulliermo Rigondeaux, yet no one seemed to care. Why was there no uprising? Does that mean it wasn’t “luto?”

So why the hasty, narrow-minded judgments? Why the below the belt comments?

Is this how Filipino fans want to be recognized? Are these the stuff that “represent” the Filipino supporter?

It was so easy for some to turn into boxing experts without even making an effort to understand the sport itself and the entirety of the boxing industry.

To say “this isn’t boxing” or “RIP boxing” primarily because of Mayweather’s mastery and the disbelief that Pacquiao lost is an insult that goes beyond the surface.

To say such is disrespectful to the amount of Mayweather has exerted through the years while carrying the “hardwork, dedication” mantra.

To say such is an insult to CompuBox, the Nevada State Athletic Commission, to veteran boxing journalists like Kevin Iole and Dan Rafael, to “technical” fighters like Rigondeaux and Andre Ward, and the entire scope of the sport.

What happened on Sunday was boxing, and it was boxing at its finest.

Now, is this how they want to represent the country? Do they want be known elsewhere for these habits?

The bad habits were on full display for the entire day, and it isn’t the only instance people have seen the culture.

I remember Gilas Pilipinas losing to Iran with the team’s fans having to make “okay lang, at least hindi mabaho” comments first before accepting defeat.

When our Ms. Universe candidates don’t make it to the top or fall short and settle for a runner-up award, supporters say “dinaya” or “luto.”

“Eh mas maganda sagot natin!”

“Kaya naman maganda ‘yung dating eh dahil sa interpreter!”

“Chaka naman siya.”

In general, when the Philippine side loses, there should be a denial stage first, followed by a bargaining stage, before the acceptance of reality when all else fails.

The collective disbelief upon CompuBox’s release of the fight stats was a microcosm for that culture.

People cannot seem to accept the truth without going the depths of the world for extra-curriculars first, when in fact it was obvious Mayweather won.

Understandably, most have been driven away by emotion, but ignorance is never an excuse, so to speak.

Have they bothered asking themselves…

“What do I know about boxing?”

“Why did Pacquiao lose?”

“Why did Mayweather win?”

“What did Mayweather do to win?”

“What didn’t work for Pacquiao?”

It is truly disheartening to rally behind our kababayan only to see him/her lose, but Filipino fans, we are all better than what we showed on Sunday.

Photo Credit: Chris Farina / Top Rank

  • trupinoy

    Very well said. Sad to say, most Pinoys (not all of course) are poor and sore losers. Look at our highly distinguished politicians. During elections and as soon as results started to come in, very very few would readily concede and accept defeat. As they say, in Philippine politics, no one loses an election, either they’re declared the winner or “NADAYA”. Maybe it is really inherent upon us Pinoys not to give up that easy, no matter how obvious and convincing pa ang resulta. We would then complain, whine and protest, baka sakali makalusot.

    Why then would a typical Pinoy accept defeat differently when the highly esteemed Pambansang Kamao himself acted that way? That instead of accepting defeat graciously, he came up with so many excuses and accusations?

  • Utol Tolits

    MANNY PACQUIAO IS THE UNDECLARED WINNER! Not only many of us FILIPINOS said it. Boxing greats Hollyfield and Mosley conveyed that Manny won the fight over Floyd. Grand Prix champion Lewis Hamilton from his view at the ringside at the MGM Arena claimed that Pacman is the winner in the match against the Money Man. Skip Bayless, a veteran sports commentator and analyst who has covered boxing since Ali-Spinks era, asserted that Manny should be declared the champion, with or without the shoulder injury. He scored it 115-113 in favor of Manny. Many who have watched the replay of the boxing event by slow motions are convinced that Manny won. If you controlled everything, this is indicative that you want to move heaven and earth to come out the winner. An appointed judge to render verdict on Floyd’s matches several times came out and revealed that Mayweather has fixed judges on many occasions. I am not saying that he fixed the judges in the “‘Fight of the Century”. I only wonder why the scorecard of one judge in that fight is a mile away from the two judges. I wonder why, during the fight, most of the slow motions on television showed that Pacquiao was being hit.By the way, Quinito Henson, a respected sports writer, also saw that Manny won by a slim margin. Please don’t interfere with our judgement. We have our senses too.Computer box? Watch the replay by slowmotions.


Composed Ceres-Negros expels Shan United in shootout victory



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2017 AFC ASEAN Zone Champions Ceres-Negros banked on their poise and composure from the spot as they knocked out Myanmar’s Shan United via a 4-3 penalty shootout (1-1 after extra time) triumph, Tuesday evening at the Thuwunna Stadium in Yangon, Myanmar.

The Negrenses punched their ticket to Brisbane, Australia after emerging the better spotkick takers. Four Busmen were on target, while two of their Shan Warriors counterparts fluffed their lines.

The two domestic champions were inseparable after 120 minutes, with the hosts holding their own against the Philippine champions. Ceres-Negros looked the more dominant of the two teams. However, they couldn’t make the advantage count where it mattered, as they failed to breach the sturdy Shan United defense inside the first two regulation halves.

The visitors were visibly more comfortable in the first half, but with the scores staying level at the break, the less-fancied Myanmar champions eventually found their footing in the encounter. While there were several half-chances from either side to open the scoring, both defenses remained defiant en route to unwanted extra time.

“It was a tough game. We weren’t ready to play 120 minutes because we only had four training sessions before the game but everytime we wear this jersey, we represent Ceres, we represent Bacolod, we represent the Philippines, so we have to give our best,” Ceres’ defender Carli de Murga elaborated to the Inquirer after the match. The Asian Football season has yet to start, and with both teams not too busy with pre-season preparations, rust and fatigue in a demanding affair were evident.

Come extra time, Ceres-Negros took the initiative when Stephan Schröck’s deflected effort went past the helpless Thiha Si Thu just three minutes into the first half.

Nonetheless, the hosts refused to go down without a fight, and their resilience was rewarded later in the opening half. Substitute Patrick Asare found the back of the net to restore parity in Yangon.

Another 15 minutes of goalless action took place in the second half as both teams looked more cautious, perhaps with the collective aim of avoiding a costly error or two. Among all the chances, Schröck’s in the 114th minute may have proved to be the closest to changing the scores, as his attempt shaved the post.

Shan United took to the spot first, where Asare made his penalty attempt count. Nay Lin Tun also made his, but not before teammate Chizoba smashed his attempt over Toni Doblas’ goal.

While the hosts squandered a shot, the visitors remained calm in front of a hostile Myanmar crowd. De Murga, Schröck and Mike Ott nailed their turns, with Marañon also not missing a vital kick from 12 yards.

It set up William Biassi Nyakwe, the man credited with the own goal when he deflected Schröck’s opener, with the chance to prolong his team’s campaign in the AFC Champions League. Unfortunately for him, he couldn’t atone for his earlier mistake, as his attempt soared high and wide — much to the delight of the visiting team from Bacolod, the Philippines.

The reward for Ceres-Negros is a trip to Queensland, Australia, where they will seek to do one better than compatriots Global-Cebu. The 2016 Philippine champions also played against the Brisbane Roar, who dealt them a staggering 6-0 hammering this time last year. The match will be held at the Suncorp Stadium on January 23.

As for Shan United, a spot in the AFC Cup Group Stage awaits them and they may not have seen the last of Ceres-Negros just yet. If the Negrenses lose to either Brisbane Roar or Tianjin Quanjian, they will be reacquainted with the Burmese champions in Group F.

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Abu Tratter plans to work his way to 2023 by continuing to do ‘the dirty work’



Abu Tratter may have missed the jersey-giving ceremony that the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas held for the 23 for 2023 cadets last Monday but he made sure to help out when the current batch needed him the most.

After helping the Marinerong Pilipino Skippers win the Sinulog Cup in Cebu a week ago, the 6-foot-7 Filipino-American did not hesitate to heed Gilas’ call, as they were undermanned for their second session in preparation for the 2019 FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers.

“I think it’s just an honor to put on this jersey, to be able to represent our country, to possibly represent our country in the future. It’s an honor,” shared the Laguna-native.

The 25-year old, who just celebrated his birthday last January 9, admitted that he was in awe of the talent inside the Meralco Gym. Like a fan, he wanted to take a few photo ops with the senior team’s Gabe Norwood and June Mar Fajardo.

“Actually, at first I was just shocked to see June Mar and Gabe, just to be able to be in the midst of them,” gushed the former DLSU Green Archer, who will suit-up for Marinerong Pilipino in the D-League. “I even asked them for a picture, and hopefully they’ll still give me one.

“It’s just humbling, definitely.”

However, the work has only began for Tratter. With five years to go until the 2023 FIBA World Cup, the two-time UAAP champion plans to continue to do what he does best — be the same scrapper that he is and hopefully catch the eye of Gilas’ brass.

“I think just doing the dirty work, of course. Giving whatever the team needs, rebound or any steals, any thing a dirty player would need to pick up on,” he said.

“That’s how it is, garbage into gold. Get anything, sweep up anything and try to put it back.”

Moreover, he will continue answering the call when Gilas needs him, as he himself is learning a lot from being surrounded by the country’s topflight cagers.

“Whenever I can. I want to be able to absorb all the information coming from here and hopefully apply it in the D-League and hopefully apply it on future practices, future games.”

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2018 FIBA 3X3 World Cup

Terrence Romeo invited to join Pilipinas 3×3 for World Cup



Stronger than ever

Scoring sensation Terrence Romeo has been invited by the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas to join the Philippine team in the upcoming FIBA 3X3 World Cup, according to Philippine Star columnist Quinito Henson.

Romeo, who is currently out due to a right knee injury, has been in rehabilitation and is expected to miss the entire Philippine Cup campaign of the Globalport Batang Pier and the second window of the 2019 FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers.

“Baka sa second conference na ko makabalik kasi talagang gusto ko malakas ako pagbalik ko,” the 25-year-old shared during Chooks-to-Go Live last January 2.

SBP Executive Director Sonny Barrios personally met with the 6-foot guard, inviting him to be part of the Philippine team.

Romeo has plenty of 3×3 basketball experience under his belt.

Back in 2014, Romeo was part of the Manila West 3×3 team during the Manila Masters. He was adjudged as the tournament Most Valuable Player.

The 2018 3X3 World Cup will take place from June 8-12 at the Philippine Arena in Bocaue, Bulacan.

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Red Spikers extinguish Blazers for second win



Shaking off a forgettable outing against the Perpetual Help Altas last January 11, the San Beda College Red Spikers vented their ire on defending champions College of Saint Benilde Blazers in four sets, 25-15, 25-16, 23-25, 26-24, and claimed their second win of the season, Friday afternoon at the FilOil Flying V Centre.

“Sabi ng coaches kalimutan na yung talo,” shared captain Lorenze Santos of what transpired after that match.

So, in this game, the San Beda team poured on what they worked hard for to regain momentum. “Binuhos po namin lahat ng ginawa namin sa training [ngayon].”

After tight starts in all the first two sets, the Mendiola-based side pulled away to register the seemingly insurmountable 2-0 lead.

Nonetheless, summoning the heart of a champion and led by seniors Isaah Arda and Jethro Orian, the reigning champions pulled off gritty runs to snag the third set and making a tussle of the fourth.

Ultimately, Adrian Viray virtually ended the match with a vicious serve, which the Blazers failed to convert.

The prolific outside hitter finished with 17 points, 11 coming from attacks and five off blocks. Former skipper Mark Encino also registered 17 markers.

The Red Spikers (2-1) will face the Mapua University, also at 2-1, on Friday, January 19.

Orian was such a presence at the net, ending up with 20 points for the Taft-based squad.

The defending champions Blazers (2-1) will try to bounce back later that day against San Sebastian College (0-3).

The Scores:

SBC 3 – Viray 17, Enciso 17, Santos 11, Patenio 7, Amagan 7, Desuyo 3, Zabala 0, Genobaten 0, Manliclic 0, Casin L.

CSB 1 – Orian 20, Arda 18, Bacani 6, Basilan 4, Bautista 4, Magsino 2, Martinez 0, Garcia 0, San Miguel 0, Saldavia 0, Dy L.

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