MANNY PACQUIAO is contemplating the end of his boxing career. After losing on points to Yordenis Ugas in Las Vegas on Saturday, Pacquiao is considering the retiring from the sport.
“I did my best tonight. But my best wasn’t good enough. Tonight no excuses. I wanted to fight for the title in the ring and tonight the [WBA] champion is named Ugas. I’ve done a lot for boxing and boxing has done a lot for me. I look forward to spending time with my family and thinking about my future in boxing. I want to thank all my fans that came to see me fight tonight,” Pacquiao said after the contest. “I am a fighter inside and outside the ring… In the future you might not see Manny Pacquiao again to fight in the ring. I don’t know. But I’m so happy for what I’ve done in boxing.”
A hugely popular global sports star, Pacquiao began his career in 1995 and is still competing at the top level at the age of 42. His astonishing resume has seen him defeat the likes of Erik Morales, Marco Antonio Barrera, Juan Manuel Marquez, Ricky Hatton, Oscar De La Hoya, Miguel Cotto and so many more. He was even beating Adrien Broner and Keith Thurman in 2019 at the age of 40. But he must bring his career to a close at some point and he is considering whether now it is indeed that time.
“This sport, this is my passion, that’s why I’m still here fighting at the age of 42. I’m enjoying it but sometimes you have to think about your body,” Pacquiao said. “In my heart I want to fight, I want to continue fighting. I have to consider also my body.”
In a sign that age is catching up with him, Pacquiao revealed that both of his legs starting cramping up as early as the second round in this fight with Ugas, inhibiting his movement. “My legs were cramping. I think because we did a lot in training,” he said. “I know his style. I wanted to do my plan, my plans in the ring – I have a lot of techniques for his style. I’m not saying this is my excuse [but] my two legs were cramping, I could not move [properly]. That’s why I could not move around. In the early days I could easily move and outbox him. You know Manny Pacquiao. But this time around it’s like my two legs were tight and hurting me in the second round, until the 12th round. But I’m not making excuses… I just stayed and countered his punches. That’s boxing. I’ve done a lot in boxing and I’m happy that we’re safe.
“We’re not young anymore.”
A senator in the Philippines, Pacquiao could focus entirely on his political ambitions. “There’s a lot of things that I need to accomplish to help people. That’s my mission. I want to be an inspiration to all the people, especially the Filipino people, inside and outside the ring. That’s my goal,” he said. “I might have finished my career in boxing. But this is my statement to all the boxing fans, people all over the world, we entertain people, we entertain in the ring. The most important thing is what we have done for others, how we can help them… People are hungry, starving, experiencing difficult times, how we should help them, understand them and show our hospitality and love for them. Always remember this. God is love and therefore we must love each other and help each other. Not only by words but by actions.”
“I want to leave a legacy, not only being a good fighter but I want to leave a legacy as an inspiration to everybody, like I said inside and outside the ring,” he added.
“Thank you to all of you. Thank you boxing.”