Manny Pacquiao loses to Yordenis Ugas but his legend keeps growing.
Manny Pacquiao could be done after loss to Yordenis Ugas, but his legacy is one among a sort.
Manny Pacquiao sits within the ring ahead of the media, sunglasses covering his freshly stitched face.
The shades help Pacquiao avoid detection of his battered eyes, but he can’t evade the question he knows is facing him; the question he perhaps can’t account himself.
Is this the end?
Yordenis Ugas may need helped bring some clarity to his answer, as he earned a transparent victory over Pacquiao Saturday night.
Two years ago, it had been a special story against Keith Thurman, when Pacquiao won his fourth world title at 147 pounds.
But against Ugas, Pacquiao was slow, both together with his feet and his hands.
He looked old.
The punches lacked power.
The movement that made Pacquiao a legend was gone.
How could he not after 77 pro fights? How could he not when he’s staring down his 43rd birthday?
In the end, time always wins, and Pacquiao takes a flash to ponder the load of what is happened.
He apologizes to the fans for his performance and for losing.
Pacquiao says his legs were tight, that preparing on short notice was a challenge.
“In my heart, i would like to continue [to] fight,”
Pacquiao says at the postfight press conference.
“But I even have to think about , also, my body.”
“When our lives are finished inside this world, we will take nothing,”
“In this sport, this is often my passion, this is often why I’m still here fighting at the age of 42.
I’m enjoying it, but sometimes you’ve got to believe the lifetime of your body.”
That final judgment on his fighting future, Pacquiao says, will come another day.
In fact, many big decisions await Pacquiao, who is contemplating a presidential run within the Philippines, where he’s already a sitting senator.
For now, though, his thoughts are focused on boxing, a sport to which he has dedicated the bulk of his life.
Despite Saturday’s outcome, if this is often indeed it for Pacquiao’s fistic career, his legacy is secure, because it has long been.
Pacquiao has reigned at the highest of the game with a career that has spanned four decades.
He has been a champion in eight weight classes.