MANNY Pacquiao is not losing greatness but lack of credible opponents may just relegate Pacman's role to just providing lesser mortals a chance to show up in the big league.
After all, Manny was just a second fiddle when he broke into the champion's league as a mere replacement to fight Ledwaba, the African boxing hero in the bantamweight division many years ago.
The same punching power that brought great surprise to the boxing world is the same power that had put all the great Mexican boxing greats in the firing squad of the Filipino boxer from Marco Antonio Barrera to Juan Manuel Marquez.
Antonio who? Margarito who?
Where's the partying, moneymaking Mayweather, who is said to be the last man standing in the pound for pound division after Manny had waxed confident sounding his own child-like boxing braggadocio of "Now you know."
Manny is our undisputed champion after Floyd Mayweather Jr. continues to bask in the sun. It is our belief that the last man standing in world-class, no-fear boxing is Marquez, one of the greatest in the dreaded El Mehikano boxing stable alongside the handsome Erik Morales.
Antonio Margarito for the November fight card is the more competitive challenge compared to the returning Miguel Cotto considering that Antonio's gloves are not yet tried against Manny's. Do not count him out yet because Margarito is also an IBO welterweight champion. The important thing is that Margarito is ready to fight and shows no sign of backing out from a good fight.
Who knows, Margarito may have a lot of surprises up his sleeves just like Manny, in his humble beginning as a ring warrior. There are solid, direct-hit punches in the field not so much with lucky punches. What Manny did to Ledwaba when he was just a nobody was pure common sense, stamina and hardwork not so much on lucky punches. Although, the present-day Saranggani legislative southpaw believes in both, lucky breaks and lucky punches.
As to Margarito, one consolation for me is the unheralded boxer's striking resemblance to my over-age nephew who had lost all his opponents at the gang war in Boulevard.
Not because he is a scientific boxer like Banal. In fact, he uses only his punches one-on-one. One on two or even three, he does not even apply his homebaked kata, but everything else up hidden in his shirts.
Speaking of home baking. At the Club 888 Marco Polo Hotel Davao Pacman lives in a framed photo on the wall. In its latest edition, Nigel Fisher was looking more alive, kicking and handsome than David Beckham.
The English GM of Mindanao's tallest hotel building raises his right leg always looking ready to strike his lone goal in answering media queries while unnerving Marco's newest surprises in their creative cooking with the visit here of international chef Hoi Ming.
Their newly refurbished Lotus Court will soon be ready, hopefully by August, the month of Kadayawan thanksgiving when Chef Ed Tuazon is ready to unveil his nutrition-month menu of native delicacies that will include Manny Pacquiao's elixir of life, the backyard kalamunggay.
By the way, the success of Kadayawan 2010 rests heavily in the reinforced participation of the private sector to be led by the tourism-oriented and related establishments, according to the trio of Zimmerman, Mayette Ibuyan-Abayon and Bong Aportadera, head of the different festival committees of Pamulak (Floral Float Parade), Indak-Indak (Streetdancing) and Public Information respectively.
The Davao City Government will provide the inspiration, human and other resources it can unleash to make the merry month of August merrier.
Kadayawan Beat: "Because I am amiable." -- James Zimmerman