success

Thankful for my Pacquiao ringside seats

 

It just suddenly hit me this morning!  I have been able to cover 9 of Manny Pacquiao’s fights sitting at ringside…live!  I have called maybe over 15 of his fights some of which I have done off-tube (meaning I was watching the TV feed and was speaking into a mic as the voice over) and some I have done for radio…but man I have been ringside 9 times.

Manny Pacquiao fights are always exciting specially upclose

Manny Pacquiao fights are always exciting specially upclose

 

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Best praise ever

Best praise ever

“Good job, coach!”.  “Great win,sir!”.  “What a comeback coach.”  “I don’t know how you do it but keep on doing it.”  These are some of the best praises I have received over the years of coaching youth baseball.  Of course, when you win and everything is going well, one gets a lot of these.  When you lose a game or two, you receive the harshest of comments….but that is another story.

You live for the good stuff.  Of course my coaching colleagues and I work doubly hard to do well.  Admittedly, these are the kind of compliments you are aiming for…. until just recently.

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A Father’s Confession

A Father’s Confession

When I watch you playing I really want to play with you.  I remember when I was your age, it may not have been baseball as  I was playing basketball then, I would enjoy just going out there and playing as hard as I can.  When I watch you play, I wish I could be right there on the field with you,  waiting for the ball with you and completing a play with you.    I would back you up when a line drive goes  directly to you and would cover your base when a ball pulls you off it.

We would be building great memories together if that were possible.   But of course I can’t.  I just get to watch you play and hope that you are enjoying as much playing as I am watching you.

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Pacquiao-Mayweather-  I was at the fight of the century

Pacquiao-Mayweather- I was at the fight of the century

Manny Pacquiao after the Mayweather fight

Manny Pacquiao after the Mayweather fight

Its been almost 3 months since the Pacquiao Mayweather fight.  Though the quality of the event did not give justice to the hype, it was and still is one historic moment.

I was interviewed by USA Today this morning asking about the Periscope App that I was using then.  It just then occurred to me, how truly wonderful that experience was for me.    I suddenly realized how blessed I was to be able to watch and call the fight from just 2 rows away from the ring.  It was because of where I was and what I was doing that prompted the skype interview.  At that moment in May,  I was in one of the most important locations in the world.

Wow!  That is really all i can say.  Thank you Lord.

Debt of Gratitude- the Filipino way 1

Debt of Gratitude- the Filipino way 1

“Utang na Loob”  is how it is commonly referred to.   A loose definition would be a desire of one to repay another for a past action where the latter helped the former.  The assistance could come in different forms and circumstances.  It could be where money was lent out at the the right moment.  A job was given when it was badly needed.  An opportunity provided when there was nothing else to turn to.    It is a form of help that characteristically bails out the receiver from a grave situation.

At the surface, the transaction is a simple give and take agreement.  It is by its original intent a selfless act of compassion…to help.  However, the gravity of the assistance sometimes makes the debt somehow impossible to repay.    That is why, ideally, there is no agreement that it has to be repaid.

This wonderful act of giving is oftentimes corrupted by the very same people who participate.  It is tainted when the giver expects something in return… that the debt of gratitude be paid back and also when the receiver lives the rest of his life trying to give back what was freely given.  In any case , both are imprisoned not by each other but by their own guilty disposition.

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Shout at the boys!

Shout at the boys!

discipline hardwork inspirational

Baseball training grassroots!

The other day, a father of a boy playing in our 12 and under team from a school whose baseball program we handle came up to me and said, “Coach, you know the boys really lack discipline. They drop the ball even when they just need to shuffle it around. They are tense.  They need to be noisy, talk to each other on the field.  I give you the license to shout at them  some more.  The coaches seem to be shy and embarrassed to do so”.

 

I have heard this comment and suggestion time and again from well-meaning parents.  A lot of them define good coaching by being loud.  That discipline is achieved when coaches continuously shout at hapless boys, giving out instructions in detail short of him playing as well.

 

Stepping back however, I have observed, that the teams that are truly cohesive, those that play like well oiled machines, those that play with discipline are led by coaches who see no need to “shout” at them during games.    All the shouting has been done during practice.

 

You see, I think the first thing a coach, the leader must make sure of, is that his team understands the goal of the group and embrace the path everyone has chosen.    Once this is set, all actions by the coach, including the “shouting” must bring the group towards that goal.

 

But, the “shouting’ is one of a few visible, or should I say audible features of good coaching.  Everything else, not everybody can see. The relationships that are formed within the group, the respect that is built amongst the individuals, the common objectives the players share.  Objectives that people outside the group may never understand.

 

This forms the platform of building a team.  The “shouting” then becomes productive and integral to the team’s and individual’s growth and development, even if they are only 12 years old.

 

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Pacquiao Rios-  What they really want to say!

Pacquiao Rios- What they really want to say!

 

Pacquiao Rios

Just got home from the fight.  I did not attempt to even write any post fight articles. Was too tired and clearly so many write ups have already been posted.  The story took the headlines of most if not all relevant media portals and broadsheets. 

The story is clear , it is what it is.  Pacquiao put on a dazzling show to beat Brandon Rios.

As I read through a lot of articles I would just like to share my thoughts on something.  Given my little knowledge in boxing, allow me to decipher  what I think these fighters want to really say when they say what they say.

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Pacquiao and Rios- fighting for their future

Pacquiao and Rios- fighting for their future

Pacquiao looks good!

Ripped and ready

I was at the weigh in for the Pacquiao Rios fight and here are the facts:

Rios came in at 146 and a quarter lbs while Pacquiao registered at 145 lbs

Pacquiao looked fresh and buffed.   Rios cheek bones were pronounced and though he is thinner than usual, he had no muscle definition.

Both fighters were smiling while Rios was having fun with the crowd asking Filipinos and Mexicans alike to cheer.

The expected tension between the camps were not evident, everyone seemed civil.

Alex Ariza was not quite visible but he was on stage for a few minutes.

Several minutes backstage, Pacquiao was his usual jolly self allowing ambush interviews and several photo opportunities.   He stayed for at most 20 minutes and proceeded to walk out the arena using the backdoor.  No one from team Pacquiao stayed behind except for Freddie Roach who had to formally approve the gloves and join the pre-fight meetings.  All in all, Pacquiao and team stayed at the weigh-in for not more than one hour.

Bandon Rios’ smile was gone as soon as he passed the through the backstage curtains.  While Robert Garcia, Rios’ trainer, was taking care of business talking to media people and then proceeding to check out the gloves, Rios was seated with two 1 litter bottles of what looked like juice and or a sports drink.  He was clearly in need of liquid to hydrate himself.

Rios showing off what he has

Rios at his best

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Pacquiao needs to dispose Rios

Pacquiao needs to dispose Rios

It has been almost a year since Marquez pulled one of the biggest upsets in boxing history when he floored Manny Pacquiao.  Sitting at ringside, the moment Pacquiao hit the canvas I was up on my feet not believing what I just witnessed.

If only Pacquiao did not fake an attack before going in the round would have ended and Pacquiao in all probability would have won.

If only the bell sounded a second sooner, the fight would have gone on without Manny tasting his worst defeat ever.

I obviously have not gotten over it.  I am not sure if Pacquiao has.

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Could Doliguez be the next Pacquiao?

Could Doliguez be the next Pacquiao?

Jun”Hercules” Doliguez (16-0-1), a Filipino boxer, a virtual unknown in the local boxing scene secretly flew to the United States kicking of a campaign aimed at bringing home a world championship belt. He will face the dangerous Mexican Giovanni Caro (24-13-4). A win against Caro will do two very important things for him.

This bout is scheduled as an undercard of the Timothy Bradley-Juan Manuel Marquez card and a win by Doliguez will be a fitting introduction of himself to his countrymen.

Secondly, and just as important, a win here puts Doliguez directly on target for a shot at a world championship in the 126 lbs division.

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