The Pacquiao-Clottey fight leaves a sour taste in the mouth of fans who were extremely frustrated by the collapse of the Pacquiao- Mayweather megafight. For lack of a better term , my PPV channel simply refers to the fight in a rather nondescript sounding manner – THE EVENT. The fight may not be that spectacular in what is at stake for the fighters but the venue – the brand new $1.2B Dallas Cowboys stadium – is by itself already spectacular, making up for the lack of glitz and glamor of an opponent in Joshua Clottey. Manny is favored to win but experts say it will not be a cakewalk for Clottey is no slouch. The man may look sluggish but he is a gorilla with the tenacity of a hippo. He looks indestructible. His skin looks like premium leather fresh from the tannery and one wonders if the Pacman will need a razor to break his brow. There’s already ton of hype surrounding the fight courtesy of Gerry Jones, the billionaire owner of the Dallas Cowboys and Pacquiao’s savvy promoter, Bob Arum. Reportedly former President George W. Bush will be at the executive box of Jones to watch the Pacman. Action star celebrities with the likes of Steven Segal, Claude Van Damme, Mark Wahlberg, Mickey Rourke will be on the ringside to watch the Pacman. Of course, members of the mutual admiration society of Pacquiao’s ilk will be at ringside as well to watch the power of Pacman the great – Julio Cesar Chavez, Kelley Pavlik, Juan Manuel Lopez and Miguel Cotto. And… to top it all and this is really big… Dana White, the president of UFC, a rival sport that threatens to convert boxing fans to MMA ( Mixed Martial Arts) believe it or not will attend the fight and is rooting for the Pac to destroy Clottey in 8 ! He’s also handing out tickets to fans. Now that truly speaks of Pacquiao’s appeal to MMA fighters. With the Pac in the ring, it’s slam bang action from the opening bell. With Floyd Mayweather,it will be boredom city from start to finish.

Joshua Clottey said that when his manager called to break the news about the Pacquiao fight, he was so ecstatic that wasn’t able to sleep. When you fight the Pacman these days, you reap the harvest too. Clottey gets $1.5M – the most he could ever get on the planet fighting in the ring. In fact Clottey was so immensely thankful of the opportunity when he declared with a rather surprising magnanimity, about fighting a man he greatly respects ” if I lose to Pacquiao then I lost “. But Clottey is a bulldog that should not be taken lightly. The fight is by no means an easy one for Manny, at least on record. One thing that Manny only needs to do is mentally replace Clottey’s face with that of Floyd Mayweather. It may pump his adrenalin up full volume and harness his deep seated hatred of the man who tried to ruin his reputation with his senseless setroid allegation and he can end the fight with a sleeper like he did to Hatton. That will be a real treat to the 45,000 fans who will be watching the event live at the humungous stadium.

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For the next two weeks, it looks I won’t be spending any money for coffee :). McDonald’s Canada just announced that its java concoction will be offered free to the public for two weeks – all day, not just during breakfast time like they did for a couple weeks in 2009. It is a rather intriguing move for McDonalds which interestingly coincides with the 2010 launch of Tim Horton’s celebrated Roll Up The Rim to Win contest. People are excited about the prospect of laying hands on the 40 Toyota RAV4’s up for grabs and countless other prices from ranging from $10K cash, netbooks, coffee cards and millions of free donuts and coffee. This contest – literally rolling the rim of the paper cup to look for a prize – also covers the handful U.S. states where the Tim Horton’s franchise had expanded . The great part about the contest is you can go to the website and check the winners map where you can view the places where the major prizes were won. In this type of lottery, geographical distribution of major prizes is important.Β The contest is definitely not a ruse as by law, the franchise will have to apply for a permit and provide the odds of winning to get approved.

I am not sure what Mcdonalds is trying to pitch with their free coffee campaign other than to say that theirs tastes better than Tim’s ( which I kinda agree, somewhat πŸ˜‰ ). Or probably lure folks into saying – “hey, you get free coffee so why notΒ buy a muffin or chicken wrap along with it for good measure “? The free coffee still won’t stop me and my wife from spending an hour or so at a pricier Starbucks or Second Cup joint after our regular weekend dinner dine out where we can enjoy real coffee and healthier non-fruit dessert (if there is such a thing). At Second Cup I can browse with my netbook for 2 hours for free since daughter would be incessantly blabbering with her stories not allowing me and my wife to engage in a decent conversation 😑

As for the free Mcdonald’s coffee – sure, oddly enough, Β it would be nice to pass by their drive through anytime and say “medium with milk only please” and not pay for it :). For those cheapskates who are thinking of taking their date for the first time to free coffee, I can tell you it’s as worse as paying with free coupons πŸ˜†

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The Agony of Defeat

We are all familiar with the phrase ” the joy of victory and the agony of defeat“. Let me also say that there is honor in defeat and Miguel Cotto’s conduct after the Pacquiao fight , his gracious acceptance of the defeat, giving full credit to his opponent and offering no excuses was to me the epitome of a true sportsman . Cotto certainly ranks high in my list of not only a great boxer but a great person as well. There is no doubt about agony in defeat and such agony can be exacerbated by the way one loses the game. The result of the recent ( Nov 29) 97th Grey Cup finals, the Superbowl equivalent of the CFL ( Canadian Football League) was one that ranks high in my list as the worst defeat in team history ever. I bet no one outside of Canada knows what the CFL is πŸ™‚ but it’s been around since 1912 and it is said people in the western part of this country won’t take second thoughts of taking their dogsleds to watch the game at the freezing stadiums πŸ™‚

Here’s what happened. With about 5 seconds left in the game, the Montreal Allouettes were down 2 points but were 52 yards from the goal, not a real good distance but decided to kick nonetheless for a 3 point goal to win the game by one point against the Saskatchewan Roughriders. Silence in the stadium. The Montreal kicker kicked the ball wide to the right and Roughriders fans who accounted for 2/3 of the full house McMahon stadium in Calgary jumped up and down in pandemonium celebrating the victory. But wait a minute. The umpires threw the flag during the kick, an indication that something went awry. It turned out that the Roughriders had too many men in the field ! There were 13 men instead of 12. Someone muffed the substitution ! Too excited perhaps ?? 😦 An infraction was committed so a 10 yard penalty was due which meant that Montreal would have to kick again but this time from 42 yards arghh. Never give the opponent a second chance they say. True to expectation, the Montreal kicker made the goal and for the Allouttes fans it was a joyous resurrection from the dead and sadly, for the Roughriders fans, a case of premature ejaculation 😦 The dumbest team loss I’ve ever seen in my life. I bet you this will not be the end of it. 😯
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Manny Pacquiao – No Fear, No Doubt, No Hesitation – in Showdown with Cotto

pacquiao_cottoThe Pacquiao-Cotto fight on Nov 14 isn’t about boxing supremacy nor a prelude to the most awaited showdown for the pound for pound crown with undefeated Floyd Mayweather Jr. This fight is about Pacquiao making history – a phenomenal 7th title in 7 different weight classes. A win will be the affirmation of Pacquiao’s almost superhuman prowess – 7 world titles from 106 to 147 lb. weight classes , a feat no human has ever achieved in the annals of the sport of boxing. I couldn’t care less if Pacquiao quits boxing if he wins this fight. Proving that he can conquer Mayweather is no more than icing on the cake, if not to trample and silence the loquacious and arrogant Mayweather who bad-mouthed Pacquiao with his malicious allegation of the Pacman using steroids to defeat his much larger and bigger opponents. Rumors in the Quiapo middle earth point to the Pacman’s exceptional strength to his possession of an extraordinary amulet from the indigenous carabao, the country’s national animal and symbol of raw and indestructible fighting power. πŸ˜† Or it might just be the samson-like effect of the balut or the boatload of rice and kilawin that turbocharges his biceps like what spinach does to Popeye’s. πŸ™‚ You’d make more sense to say that the Pacman is a freak of nature than someone who dopes himself to win fights.

Advantage Pacquiao

pacquiao_supermanThis post would be useless without a prediction so like what most odd makers say, I believe Pacquiao has the advantage to pull a win in this fight. I wouldn’t go to much details but my contention is based largely on the fact that just like de la Hoya and Hatton, Cotto switched to a new trainer for this fight. Switching trainers does not guarantee you’d find the magic formula to beat your opponent. de la Hoya gained nothing by employing Nacho Berestain, the famed trainer of Marquez, for his showdown with Pacquiao. Hatton learned it the hardest way. He dumped his former trainer to get the services of Floyd Mayweather Sr. for the Pacquiao fight, only to get knocked out senseless in the 2nd round. Hatton simply forgot that his old trainer took him to an impressive 45-1 record prior to his fight with Pacquiao. For some reason, Manny’s fighting style had been a nagging riddle even to the most astute trainers in the business. Hall of fame trainers Angelo Dundee, Emmanuel Steward and commentator/trainer Teddy Atlas always eat crow with their predictions on Pacquiao’s fights. They never get it right. The reason is they base their predictions solely on the tale of the tape forgetting that Pacquiao, aside from being an aberration, a freak of nature, has a team that makes him a progressively smarter and better fighter. Corners are the strategists and boxers the tacticians. No matter how superb a tactician Pacquiao is, he can’t win by himself. The evolution from good to great is a progressive fusion of confidence, strategy and tactics between the trainer, coaches and boxer. Disrupt that team chemistry and you would likely start over again. Cotto will be at a psychological disadvantage, precariously treading on new water with his new trainer in this fight. When Manny wins, team Pacquiao wins lest we forget.

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A Day Trip to the Capital City

P9030612Last Thursday I made a day return trip to Ottawa, the capital city of Canada. The trip was 420 kms one way from Toronto, about 4.5 hours which meant that I logged almost 900 kms for the return trip. I left Ottawa at around 8pm and the drive home with the full moon in the summer night was wonderful. I had to help a relative move for a year’s study to finish her second university degree. I took off the second and third row seats of my van to load all her stuff. Count me in with the small ways I can help when it comes to family pursuing education. The photo above is the House of Commons building, the seat of the Canadian Parliament. The front of the picture shows the eternal flame burning, symbolizing its unity.

P9030640The close up photo of the imposing facade of the parliament building. It was interesting to note that I didn’t see a sight of policemen nor uniformed security personnel in the area. The House of Commons is on a summer break so it figures the security folks are too πŸ˜‰

P9030616This is the East Block building of Parliament Hill. This beautiful edifice has vaults that used to keep Canada’s financial treasures. Today this building houses offices of Canadian senators. Don’t laugh now but in Canada, senators are appointed by the Governor General upon advice of the Prime Minister. 105 citizens of high esteem and notable accomplishment from the various represented provinces are appointed as senators. The senate’s main function is to review legislations passed by the House of Commons. This may sound odd but believe me the system works, at least in this country πŸ˜‰

P9030618This church looking structure is actually the library of the House of Commons, located at the back of the building.

P9030626The view of the Ottawa River from Parliament Hill. This shot was taken from the back side of the House of Commons. The panoramic view of the city across the Ottawa River is quite pretty more so at night. The pic shows a boat carrying tourists for a sightseeing cruise of the river. Here is how Parliament Hill looks like from the other side of the river.

P9030644A shot of the avenue in front of Parliament Hill. The business section of the city is abuzz across the street, right in front of the national legislature.

P9030656Ottawa – a blend of the old and new. This is my third visit to the city. The last time I visited I didn’t have a blog yet.
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