Can Donaire restore the Pacquiao monument?
HIS latest stoppage, brilliant and crisp, had more than enough solid elements of a gross mismatch.
But after the carnage in Houston over the weekend, Nonito Donaire Jr., in a flash, was left with tougher roles to fill.
He also has as many aches to assuage.
The bout, a budding mismatch from Day 1, looked gory enough it was next branded hysterically as a vindication of the shock and shame delivered by Manny Pacquiao’s monumental fall and filthy foldup in Las Vegas a week earlier.
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It’s a Christmas gift from Bob Arum, this reporter remembers informing international boxing correspondent Anthony Andales the moment the bout was announced.
What do you mean?
It will be a lollipop.
Arce, who loves to go around with that balled candy in his mouth, will be left out there for the lusty licking.
* * *
It’s like this. It would’ve been a little sweeter, a sort of Christmas prizefight package, if the Mexican firebrand had been allowed to spit out some patented venom in the opening rounds.
Donaire was not exactly in a hurry, neither was he being impatient.
But the respected Jimmy Tobin, in a post for Cruelest Sport, scored perfectly in saying that, this time, Donaire did not even bother to first size up his foe.
If the sensational stoppage had indeed catapulted Donaire as Fighter of the Year, the bout should also go down as the most forgettable of the period.
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As expected, they next had to wonder why Arum was in a frantic haste to put Donaire up the world pound-for-pound ladder.
Was the tasteless stoppage, against an “aging, undersized but still adored warrior” strong enough to push Donaire onward as pay-per-view attraction?
To tell the truth, the Donaire victory, his fourth this year and second straight by knockout, has also led plain fans and self-styled experts to ask if, say, Donaire could step up to the Manny Pacquiao legend.
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—Will he finally move up from 122 pounds to a full featherweight?
He said he’s at home as super bantam, but it’s in their program to move up to featherweight proper next year.
—Can he approximate the achievements of Pacquiao, like winning world crowns in eight separate weight divisions?
That’s quite doubtful. The Pacman is a golden act that may never be duplicated in this lifetime.
—You mean Donaire is just another ordinary fighter?
No, Nonito is a wonder worker, easily more crafty and skillful than Pacquiao. He’s indeed a gem, but he’s only human.
—What do you mean?
Pacquiao was a storm, a magical warrior, a human ball of fire, a national treasure.
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—Was it not right to say Donaire, with his victory, has vindicated the Philippines after that shocking Pacquiao loss to Juan Manuel Marquez on Dec. 8 in Las Vegas?
Everybody has reason to feel delighted, to be relieved, this should add to the Christmas cheer hereabouts.
—You mean Donaire was unable to avenge the Pacquiao defeat?
Avenge is definitely not the right term.
You must realize it’s only Pacquiao who could properly avenge that shocking defeat. He must score a monumental win in order to restore his stature.
—What do you mean?
Pacquiao is a living monument. When Marquez stopped him, the feat was equal to uprooting our national monument and transporting it over to Mexico. Only Pacquiao, or anybody of his mythical greatness, should be able to win back the uprooted treasure. Nobody and nothing less.
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