Tag Archives: Philippines

Why Manny Pacquiao Should Call it a Career

(Featured Photo Credit: Eric Jamison/AP)

I am very well aware of the words that I am typing will garner attention amongst my countrymen and family as being blasphemous and outrageous but I think we cannot ignore the signs. He is a hero in the Philippines, the fighting Congressman of the Sarangani Province. He is the cultural icon that has wonderfully represented the motherland and he is the poster boy of graciousness and humility. But as a fan and admirer of the Pac-Man, I think it’s time to face the facts that are in front of us: Manny Pacquiao should retire and begin the next phase of his life as congressman and full-time ambassador.

AP Photo Credit to Julie Jacobson

The above image is only one of the reasons why I think Manny needs to reassess his boxing career. Despite being only 33 years old, Manny Pacquiao has already fought in 61 professional bouts. He has been fighting constantly for the better part of two decades and the last few years, the results are starting to show his age. He has become more showman and entertainer than boxer. His last few fights never really challenged him like Marquez always does. Joshua Clottey was buried in his defensive shell, Mosley never bothered to engage Manny, Bradley gave up on the fight halfway through (and won despite the sheer absurdity of the result), and Margarito’s face was rearranged by Pacquiao’s swift justice. All of them were carried in their fights by Manny because he wanted to deliver a “good fight”. I think Manny had gotten obsessed with the idea of entertainment and people getting their moneys worth. He could’ve easily taken them down earlier, like the Hatton bout, but felt compelled to give a good fight for the audience and the several million viewers watching pay-per-view. With Bradley, he had shown his complacency and whether you believe the outside vices or influences had taken its toll on him, I think he became more entertainer than boxer at the moment and let up in the final few rounds. After that controversial loss, he wanted to prove to the world that he was still the great Manny Pacquiao and preached his rededication to knock the snot out of Marquez to settle the argument on who was the better fighter in their rivalry. However, all it took was the overconfidence and his idea of just flipping a switch for him to walk into the right hand of Marquez.

Don’t get me wrong, Marquez won the fight fair and square with his intelligence and new found power and strategy. He knew Pacquiao was going to try for the kill after his face collected blood and welts from the vicious lefts Manny was dealing and used that aggressiveness to his advantage to put down Manny twice Saturday evening. Marquez is a brilliant counter-puncher and deserves every bit of recognition for his game plan to win this fight. I also feel that Manny does not have that same focus required to score wins in his boxing matches. Manny’s aggressiveness is both his biggest weapon and his biggest weakness. He’ll win the first half the bout as he racks up punches but he seems to get bored and obsessed with keeping the fight going and rests on his earlier body of work than finishing the job in the end. Maybe it’s just more than fighting style at this point. Yes, you can count on punches landing and hitting but age takes its toll on a man’s speed and power and they have been lacking recently for the pound-for-pound king. While he can still dish it out with some of the best in boxing, I doubt that he can keep this up any longer because let’s face it, he has nothing really to prove at this point. He did admit to his overconfidence after the fight but that does little to quell the critics in their assessment of his eroding skills and seemingly apathetic approach in the ring. Plus, forget about the super-fight with Floyd Mayweather. Floyd has ZERO reason to fight him and probably never will. Floyd would have nothing to gain from defeating someone on the downturn of their career. Yes, three years ago it would’ve been the fight of the century but now its only mention reeks of greed, ego and missed opportunities.

We also can’t forgot about the other job he carries: Congressman of the people of his province in the Philippines. He wants to do what is best for his fellow countrymen and knowing how deep the poverty runs in the Philippines and how corruption has dominated the Philippine political system, he has made his true passion his political career. It has taken over his boxing career and it’s good that he still goes back to the well on what he does best in the boxing ring but everyone around him knows that he does not want to be just a boxer anymore. His goals as Congressman include getting free education and healthcare to his constituents and he wants back up his words. That involves taking time away from the ring training and working towards his goals as a man of the people. Everyone knows that his heart is more into his country than boxing at the moment. Maybe this is the sign he needs to pursue his new passion in life and redefine why he is the champion to his fellow Filipinos.

Photo credit: Gabriel Bouys/AFP/Getty Images

Manny Pacquiao has done wonders for the world of boxing and he will go down as the top pound-for-pound champion of the world. No one should deny him the glory of his legacy as he departs into the next phase of his life. Despite his recent losses, there is no reason to hang his head nor should he deliver any excuses because father time has caught up to him. I think a Manny Pacquiao that chases his dream of serving his agenda of a better Philippines will have more impact on himself and everyone that follows him than a fading sports star brimming with overconfidence and too much ego to walk away from the sport that made him who he was. Too many times we have seen boxers struggle and fail to walk away because it becomes their obsession to recapture their dominance in the past. That goes for any sports star for that matter because their biggest competition is always themselves. They fight their own physical and mental deterioration to where they just embarrass themselves because they could not let go of past glory and hang around too long. I want the Manny Pacquiao legacy to live on without any more blemishes because his heart is just not fully in it anymore and he needs to move on.

Do I want Manny to go away? Absolutely not. I enjoy watching him as a fighter and entertainer. I feel proud as a fellow Filipino to see him fight and watching him conquer the boxing world over the last decade added so much to my pride in my second home of the Philippines. However, you can tell his life has changed for a new purpose. He has rededicated himself to God and his faith and eliminated his old vices and bad habits of his life. His wife and family suffered during his career with him letting fame and his meteoric rise guide his way to bad decisions. He has moved past that and reconnected and found his new calling. When Manny Pacquiao does wave goodbye to the world of boxing, the world he has bled and gave all his energy to for the majority of his life, it will be a celebration and everyone won’t think less of him for it for walking away. When he takes off the gloves for the final time and steps into Congress and out into the streets of his province to work towards his new goal and affect change, he will know that boxing will not be the only label to his legacy. What defines him will be the love for his people and the new redefinition and evolution of his role: the true people’s champion.

Nintendo Has a ‘Wii U’ Launch Date! Courtesy of Soon-to-be Fired Marketing Rep!

According to Kotaku via Gamespot, the Wii U launch date has been announced! Problem is, no one was supposed to know about it. Oops. During a meeting with GameStop Managers in Texas, accessory maker PDP was making their fall lineup pitch and at the end, concluded to the managers that the Wii U accessories will be out before the Wii U launch date of November 18th. It didn’t take long for that to go viral. According to a couple of anonymous people (people who don’t want to get fired naturally, like the PDP representative guy I’m sure), they have confirmed this statement that someone dropped this bomb. Naturally, as with anyone realizing that they just gave away confidential information, they quickly changed the subject once they crapped their pants (that’s my assumption). The Kotaku article has a great he said/she said deal going on but I won’t bore you with those details as we dissect the true intent of this article in the next paragraph. Does anyone really care? For a new system launching, and perhaps it’s my old and outdated self because I haven’t been hip to the buzz in the video game world as much as I used to be, but it seems that there is a lack of excitement for this console. Don’t get me wrong, I want it like how a fat kid wants cake, but it is almost just out of loyalty to Nintendo. In my mind, there is no real killer app. Yeah, I’m going to enjoy Lego Undercover, the New Super Mario Bros. U, and Rayman Legends games but none of this is revolutionary. In fact, the last revolutionary game Nintendo has had a launch was Super Mario 64. I think the problem is that there is such a clamor for new technology that Nintendo has gotten away from the real charm of it’s brand: the first party games and innovation. It has gotten way too gimmicky, and while I love the potential of the tablet screen, I have yet to find a game that tells me this is why you need to buy this system. Especially since most of the launch gamesare just ‘upgraded’ versions of PS3 or Xbox 360 games I’ve beaten a year ago.

Seriously, why the hell is this game NOT a launch title. Look how pretty…

Time will tell, I will still always have faith in Nintendo and what they do but I do believe this is a critical crossroads for them. I guess we’ll find out what they are made of on November 18th. Which also sucks because I’ll be in the Philippines during launch. You’ve no idea how disappointed I am to miss the opportunity to brag about the Wii U during the first week of launch only to never be mentioned again after the novelty wears off.

Grizzly Review: The Bourne Legacy

There is an irony to The Bourne Legacy. The soldiers in the movie blindly do what they are told and never question the mission or authority. If an important task needs to be accomplished, they go head first, with an eye on the prize and don’t blink. They are only controlled by what seems to be a reliance on the same two sets of pills. The redundancy of these tasks echoes the movie. The film charges forward without questioning its path despite the ripe material it glances upon but we continue to eat it up because we don’t question the monotony of what we view on the screen, which results in a generic action thriller that only scratches the surface of a greater story.

In the fourth installment of this series, Aaron Cross (Jeremy Renner) is a genetically enhanced field agent similar to Jason Bourne (Matt Damon, who shows up in spirit only). He is part of the Outcome program, a more sophisticated, controlled program than Treadstone from the first three films. These soldiers are genetically enhanced for higher motor and physical skills, as well as better mental dexterity and ability. They have a reliance on a set of two pills, as previously mentioned, which breaks down into the blue and green. It does remind of The Matrix in which the control and enhancement of their abilities is based on whether they take the pills or not. The major difference is if they take the pills, they play into the control aspect of being reliant on their prescriptions from their providers (granted, if they don’t take the pills, they probably get shot).

Unfortunately for these Outcome members, Jason Bourne is happening. More specifically, the third movie’s events, The Bourne Ultimatum, is running concurrently during this movie. He raises the profile of the possibility of other programs in the CIA so in turn, all evidence must go. That includes Outcome and its members. So Aaron Cross must survive and find answers, and of course, he is almost out of the pills so he must find a doctor connected to Outcome (Rachel Weisz, who follows the Hollywood tradition of aging backwards) in order to get his dosage and survive.

The best part about the Bourne movies were its ability to take a small detail and make it rich in detail, or provide an essential purpose. Whether looking at the limits of patriotism or the idea of fighting for freedom with people who had theirs taken from them, I loved the Bourne Trilogy because there was that underlying message of the cost of ‘whatever it takes’. Of course, being able to use a magazine to disarm someone or a towel to take out a knife wielding villain helps too. I feel this movies brushes against these issues yet won’t attach themselves to them.

Edward Norton plays Eric Byer, the guy tasked with cleaning up the Treadstone mess and anything related to it but him and his character were surprisingly one note. There was no tension on what he provides on-screen, no sense of urgency that he felt like a character born out of the necessity of moving the plot along. He was there to explain to the audience why Aaron Cross is the person we were following in this movie. Byer and his team were into the players from The Bourne Ultimatum like Pamela Landy (Joan Allen), Ezra Kramer (Scott Glenn), Albert Hirsch (Albert Finney), Noah Vosen (David Strathairn) and the most frustrating thing was to not watch their stories unfold. I wanted to know how or if there were going to be punished for their roles in the clandestine world of black ops, whether Landy uncovering Treadstone made her a patriot or a traitor to the country; if CIA Director Kramer covered up what was the best means possible to get the job done and if the ends justified the means; if Dr. Hirsch opened up the gates to super soldiers; or if Vosen was correct in his definition of patriotism and loyalty to his nation. I got none of this. Writer and director Tony Gilroy went the wrong way for this movie because it merely scratches the surface and nothing more.

It doesn’t help that the movie was boooorrrriiinnngggg. This is of no fault to Renner or Weisz, who were both good in their roles. The flick just comes up short and as it just wants to be a carbon copy of actions movies. For the first third of the movie, I felt I was watching The Grey. The chase was straight out of The Bourne Ultimatum. Heck, I felt like I was watching Spy Game during certain pockets of the movie. I wasn’t sure if I was watching a survivalist movie, a straight action flick, or a detailed espionage flick. Regardless, we’ve seen the movie before. It brings nothing new to the table and sadly, felt like it had no purpose. This movie did not follow its namesake and expand upon the legacy of Bourne. The action was decent but never anything ground breaking or having cause to talk about it right after the movie about “hey, did you see that one part?!”

There were good parts in the movie, such as the Manila rooftop and car chase (although I’m biased coming from the motherland myself) and less reliance of shaky-cam but this movie could have been so good. Maybe my expectations were too high dealing with the Greengrass/Damon combination. There is no creativity in the movie and that takes away from the mythology of Bourne. Even more frustrating is how the movie just ends with no real resolution to the plot or characters in this story. This movie is nothing more than diversionary ploy to look aesthetically pleasing yet provide no answers while asking the wrong questions. Skip the Bourne ‘Letdown’.

On a side note, another program that is chasing Cross all around Manila, is a beta subject that exhibits even less empathy. He basically came off as the Asian T-1000. Sunglasses, police motorcycle, him running and giving the quick turn and stare before launching him arms in perfect 90 degree swinging motion…seriously entertained Dr. Kronner and myself. Some of my exes might even think that’d be me considering how “emotionally unavailable” I am…So apparently based off of that, I am the next Jason Bourne – with NO EMPATHY.