From the time Manny Pacquiao graced the sport of boxing up until the present day it has always been obvious that the Filipino icon was a cut above the rest displaying blistering hand speed, devastating power, ever improving boxing skills, a technical cunning, and a chin made of iron, all of the characteristics that it would take for him to excel in the ring, he was smaller than most yes but what he lacked in size he more than made up for in his ability to viciously and systematically break down and demolish his opponent breaking their will before he broke their bodies. Pacquiao, despite being the talented and powerful fighter that we see in the ring was of a humble origin, born in Kibawe, Bukidnon, Philippines to Rosalio Pacquiao and Dionesia Dapidran-Pacquiao he and his siblings lived in extreme poverty and at the age of 14 he lived on the streets of Manila for a time before making the Philippine national amateur boxing team. In 1995 an event happened that would change the course of Manny Pacquiao’s life forever, his close friend and aspiring boxer Eugene Barutog died leading Pacquiao to become a professional boxer, doing so he soon came into possession of the WBC International Super Bantamweight title and the IBF Super Bantamweight title, in the process meeting and training under the legendary Freddie Roach. It wasn’t long before Pacquiao would meet and decimate Mexican legend Marco Antonio Barrera and from there going onto meet Juan Manuel Marquez in the first of four legendary bouts winning by one point on the scorecards.
When Pacquiao faced Morales again for the second and third time he made short work of him proving that in the time between their matches he had drastically improved before once again coming face to face with Marquez for a second time (who would remain a constant thorn in Pacman’s side), this fight was scored a draw and in the time afterward Pacquiao defeated the likes of Miguel Cotto, Joshua Clottey, Antonio Margarito, Oscar De La Hoya, Ricky Hatton, and Shane Mosley before facing Juan Manuel Marquez in a close third fight, losing to Timothy Bradley, and getting KO’ed by Marquez a fourth time, at long last Pacquiao has triumphed in his last two fights by defeating Brandon Rios and then Timothy Bradley in a rematch. I understand it’s a mouthful, but to go over the entire list of things that Pacquiao has accomplished would take hours, a testament to his lasting legacy which endures to this day. And while we will always know Pacquiao as the humble champion that he has always been, everyone even the those who do not call themselves fans of his are forced to acknowledge that deep within Pacquiao there lies a will to overcome the odds no matter how great or small, a will that has shown itself capable of taking down every opponent in its way, a will that survived the tough streets of Manila to become an all time great, a will that makes him a warrior and to this day one of the most dominating and recognizable figures in the sport of boxing.
On May 2nd Pacquiao faces his toughest challenge in Floyd Mayweather who while being Pacquiao’s equal in fame is also a man who can use a variety of boxing styles and also displays the type of guile and in ring ingenuity that could be the key to dethroning the fearless Filipino, but that’s not to say that Manny doesn’t bring skills to the table himself that could prove difficult for even Floyd to overcome. Among the differing skills that Pacquiao has you could say that his fearlessness is one of them and no doubt he will not be afraid to attempt to trade shots with Floyd if the fight becomes a rough one. Pacquiao also fights from a southpaw style which has been notorious for giving right handed fighters a hard time inside the ring, no doubt with this advantage he could punch from angles making it difficult for Floyd to slip, Pacquiao’s speed and his ability to land punches faster than his opponents has always been a plus when it came to factoring in points, power has forever been an asset to the Filipino fighter as he’s given more than his fair share of fighters a loss by way of knockout, and lets not forget Freddy Roach who’s years of experience only make Pacquiao an even deadlier opponent to face.
Whatever the future may hold for Manny Pacquiao one thing will remain written in stone, this is a fighter that has cemented his legacy both in an out of the ring not simply by his in ring performance but by his resolve to go on to be the voice of an entire nation and a fighter for the people. Years from now regardless of the outcome of the Pacquiao/Mayweather bout it can be certain that he will be remembered for the warrior he was. He brought his heart and soul with him and left it all in the ring. If you don’t believe me, and if you think I’m joking just ask the guys he’s fought in the past I doubt they’ll tell you otherwise? If you like this article be sure to share it with friends and fellow boxing fans.