Manny Pacquiao

Jimmy Skaaland, Staff Writer

Manny Pacquiao is quite possibly the most versatile, inspirational, and controversial professional athlete alive today.  He is best known for brutally punishing every opponent who steps into ring with him.  He is known as the best fighter in the world but he is plagued with controversy over not agreeing to Olympic styled steroid testing, which many people believe points to guiltiness.  Don’t let that distort his greatness because he currently holds titles in eight different weight divisions from 112 flyweight division all the way up to the 154 pound junior middleweight division; no other fighter has done this…. ever. 

The impact that this small man, 5 foot 6 inches, has made is felt far beyond the ring.  On nFebruary 12, 2009, Pacquiao announced that he would be running for a seat in the House of Representatives in his home country of the Philippines as a candidate of the Liberal Party.  Just like he does in the ring to his opponents, he crushed incumbent Roy Chiongbian.  In an interview with 60 Minutes he was asked if he had any plans on running for president of his country and he avoided the question but did not rule out the possibility.  His political agenda is noble and based on social reform and improvement in the educational system.

                He most recently fought Antonio Margarito, who despite having a 17 pound, 6 inch reach, and 4 ½ inch height advantages over Paquiao seemed unfit to step in the ring with him.  Manny set the tempo for this fight from the first punch to the last, rarely letting Margarito get any type of combination punches in on him.  This was just the latest showing of Manny Paquiao’s dominance in the ring but his own trainer questioned whether he had put all he had into the fight before it happened saying that he did not train nearly as much as he has for past fights due to his political responsibly.

                His future is unclear; although no one knows if he plans on continuing as a fighter or pursuing his political career, it seems he’s successful at everything he puts his heart into.   As a fighter he will go down in history as one of the best to ever step in the ring, regardless of steroid rumors.  He’s working to unite his home country in which he wants to bring education to the masses.  You may not like Manny Pacquiao, but you have to respect what he has accomplished.