November 13, 2010

Pacquiao-Margarito: Are you excited?

Lamenting a Margarito vs. Pacquiao. Well, not anymore. Not a day's time from now, the fight will finally happen and is going to get done.

Are you excited? Me, I am a Filipino; and if only for the fact that compatriot Manny is about to carve another milestone in world boxing history, another unprecedented feat, I am excited. Eight (8) world titles in eight (8) weight divisions. Only the macho Hector Camacho's record comes near - 7-in-7; never mind if half of his came from fighting bouts sanctioned by pro boxing governing bodies you and I have never heard of (e.g. IBC, NBA). But outside of this prospect? Well, there's still history - a first in Philippine history, at least - in having a Philippine congressman winning a world boxing championship during his term of office.

Again, are you excited? Me, frankly, not exactly. I lamented 2 years ago over a Pacquiao vs. Margarito non-prospect because I wanted them to fight 2 years ago. Before the Mexican was demolished by American Shane Mosley. When there was real glory ripe for Manny's picking. When Margarito was still the world's (WBA) best welterweight; handwrap gizmos and all.

Tomorrow is far from this ideal. Margarito is still struggling to regain form (after being beaten to a pulp by Mosley in late 2008) as evidenced by his so-so performance in his last fight against Roberto Garcia in May this year. I even would want to believe he is already past his prime. Tomorrow's fight will be for the vacant WBC 154-lb light middleweight (or super-welterweight) belt; Margarito, now a natural middleweight, barely made the required catchweight (150 lbs) at yesterday's weigh-in. Some say this negotiated catchweight thing highly favors Manny. I say, this fight is all set up for the Pacman; especially after the failed negotiations with Pretty Boy Chicken.

Two years ago, a Margarito-Pacquiao would have been a classic. Tomorrow's version of it will be a rather predictable one. But who knows? In boxing there is also what they call a lucky punch. Now, I am excited.

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