In Huddle

Ariza prioritizing Chavez over Pacquiao?


THE ENTIRE Manny Pacquiao training camp was stunned when it learned Saturday that conditioning coach Alex Ariza had left Baguio in a huff.

Camp members only discovered that Ariza was missing when trainer Freddie Roach looked for his driver and was told that he had motored to Manila  with Ariza, who was catching a flight for the United States.

More than being irritated that he had to take a taxi going to the gym, Roach was shocked at Ariza’s sudden departure.

And probably puzzled that he did not know about it beforehand.

* * *

“Ariza is headed for the Julio Caesar Chavez Jr. training camp in the United States, which he obviously gave priority to over Pacquiao. He chose Chavez Jr. over Manny and Amir Khan, who was also training under him in Baguio,” read a text message I received last Saturday, moments after Ariza left the City of Pines.

Chavez’s fight is set on June 16 while Manny clashes with Tim Bradley a week earlier on June 9.

“Word has it that Ariza stands to gain a bigger revenue from Chavez, whom he is co-managing with Bill Keane.” The source added.

* * *

Except perhaps for Manny, nobody in the Pacquiao camp seems to like Ariza, who is said to have become so arrogant.

He also does not get along well with the major cast in Team Pacquiao, namely, Roach, business manager Michael Koncz and Top Rank  CEO Bob Arum, who labeled him “unprofessional.”

Ariza left the Baguio Training camp with the promise that he will reunite with the Pacquiao in Los Angeles after two weeks.

If Manny believed this promise, Roach certainly did not, mainly because of the conflict in timetables.

Roach stressed that the Pacquiao and Chavez fights are just a week apart.

Roach said Ariza can only rejoin Team Pacquiao if he abandons Chavez in the crucial phase of his training. Would he do this?

Everyone was indifferent to Ariza. Manny was the only one who stood up for him.

* * *

Last Monday, a video of Ariza’s last night was shown on TV news. It was also Ariza’s birthday that Friday night and he was celebrating with  Manny and the group.

In the video, Ariza and Manny were seated side by side and they were very sweet, with the trainer  giving Manny his full attention, practically spoon-feeding him.

“Pinaghihimay pa nga ng seafood ni Ariza si Manny, parang yaya na nagpapakain ng alaga (He was even shelling seafood for Manny, like a nanny feeding a child),” said my source.

My guess is that  Ariza was buttering up to Manny before he asked  his permission to take a leave.

I don’t know what was in the food Ariza fed Manny, but I think the latter knew he was leaving the following day because he gave him his permission, even lending the driver assigned to Roach.

Ariza probably asked for it as a birthday gift to him.

* * *

Yesterday I asked my associates if anyone had tried to get the side of Ariza.

One of the younger scribes said  his call was perfectly timed because Ariza had just arrived from the airport.

“He said Manny gave him permission to leave. He said he will be reporting back for active duty in the Pacquiao camp two weeks hence in Los Angeles, this remains to be seen,” said the scribe who obviously did not believe him.

Meantime, Roach assigned former amateur boxer Marvin Somodio to take over the task left by Ariza, whose departure could have been something everyone had been waiting for.

Except Manny.

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  • Lila

    I think Ariza knows what people don’t.. he may have sensed that PACMAN is on the road to losing.. maybe because PACMAN no longer so focused on his boxing and being ARIZA he thinks of his future too.. PACMAN is getting old you know.. and boxing is when you’re young you have much potential and the crowd will see that.. specially CHAVEZ JR. father is also a legend..

    • Toni

      Agree!! …and  besides, by his recent actuations, Pacman is turning into a PAC-head.

  • 14nono29

    This speaks not so much about the man Ariza. This speaks volumes about Manny Pacquiao. 

  • Dana

    What many Manny Pacquiao fans doesn’t know is that, every fight Manny P. Gives Trainer ARIZA the amount of $400,000.00 (four hundred thousand dollars). Whenever he travels to the Philippines, all expenses paid by Pacman. Pacman also helped Ariza buy  his house.  I don’t know  what ‘s going inside Ariza’s head.  The one’s giving a good dedicated  massage to idle Manny is his buddy- another Filipino boxer I just forgot his name.  And my sources told me Ariza has failed to establish a gap between him and Manny Pacquiao his boss. Too much familiarity… Using Manny’s sports car, going in and out of Manny and Jinky’s private room  and many more familiarity related behaviors.

  • Laki Bayag

    Phuck Yaw!

  • Benjamin

    dahil sa ambisyon ni pakyaw na maging presidente…lahat pinasok nya…artista,,politiko…singer,,,host…basketball player,,,minister,,, at ngayon.. faith healer…

  • Atagalong

    It is very interesting to note the comment of Pitbulldog: “bakit ngayon ko lang nababasa ang paninira kay Ariza.”  Either Pitbulldog does not do a lot of reading or he is just naive to notice the words and action of Ariza. There are now three champions that Freddie Roach have trained but this guy, Ariza, seems to think that he is the one responsible or the reason why they are cfhampions. He is arrogating upon himself as THE trainer, even forgetting that in the case of Pacquiao, there is already an assistant trainer in the person of Buboy Fernandez. He has turned into an arrogant person since hitching with Roach. Attacking Bob Arum, in my opinion, is oxymoronic  behavior!

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