Before all the talk begins to fade about what happened on Saturday night at the MGM Grand Hotel in Las Vegas and moves to the endless calls for what fight fans want, Mayweather vs. Pacquiao, let's reflect on a historic fight and two men that gave us our money's worth.
1) Muhammad Ali used a butterfly and a bee to describe his ring presence but Pacquiao looks like a missile, launched from a target. In fact, if you've ever watched fencing he resembles an athlete with a sword in his hand. Out of nowhere he seems to leave a spot in the ring and lunge at his opponent with speed and grace. He gives the impression of leaving his feet when in fact he doesn't. It's almost super hero stuff.
2) Cotto may have entered a gym more than a month prior to Pacquiao commenced training but he failed to do what he wanted. The HBO show "24/7 Pacquiao-Cotto" spent oodles of time making the point that the Cotto camp was no-nonsense and committed to a plan that would have their fighter ready for a man who was facing a young, strong true welterweight in his prime. Oops, that plan didn't work.
3) As he entered the ring on Saturday night, Manny Pacquiao was smiling. The HBO ring announcers mentioned it as odd and of course it was. Pacquiao has a Zen-like quality to him that puts the pressures and complexity of a situation into focus and reduces it to its simplest facts. He trained hard, he and his trainer had a plan, he was ready to execute it, he believed he knew his opponent and how to beat him and he did. How many of us could keep fear and anxiety at bay like that?
4) The unnatural calm of Pacquiao was the answer to the chaos that swirled around him during training camp. After watching "24-7" I wondered why the methodical nature of the Cotto camp wouldn't have an edge on Pacquiao's world tour-like atmosphere. And it was never made clear how much time was eaten up a day for the autograph-signing sessions, photos and celeb drop-ins. None of that mattered. It makes me want to go out and sign up for a meditation class, like right now!
5) While some have said that Freddie Roach is walking a thin line by having it seem that he is as critical to his fighter's success as Pacquiao's skill in the ring, I don't see it...yet. Roach is the other half of the wish bone in Pacquiao's success story. He is part of the cache surrounding Manny and his camp. Celebs are not just drawn to the fighter. It is the two-some that draws them in to worship at the shrine. If, as I said above Pacquiao operates on some kind of consciousness level that filters out the unnecessary noise, then he knows that and Roach will remain at his side.
6) Last but not least, how about HBO producing a post-match episode of "24/7, Pacquiao/Cotto"? Don't you want to see the behind the scenes discussions between Cotto's new trainer and the Cotto family? And what about some post-fight gloating on the part of Freddie Roach? But let's face it, we'd all like to see Cotto greeting his wife and son who fled the arena in the latter stages of the beat down.
Upward and onward to the business shenanigans that will dictate whether we get to see Mayweather/Pacquiao. There are too many businesses that will gain for it not to take place.
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