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Matthysse: I’ll take belt back home

Lucas Matthysse to get knocked out in just a few rounds? Lucas Matthysse having trouble with his weight? The Argentine champion sneered at these reports as he fielded questions from the media on Wednesday after a morning workout ahead of his World Boxing Association welterweight bout against Manny Pacquiao in….....»»

Category: newsSource: journal journalJul 11th, 2018

Matthysse: I’ll take belt back home

Lucas Matthysse to get knocked out in just a few rounds? Lucas Matthysse having trouble with his weight? The Argentine champion sneered at these reports as he fielded questions from the media on Wednesday after a morning workout ahead of his World Boxing Association welterweight bout against Manny Pacquiao in….....»»

Category: newsSource:  journalRelated NewsJul 11th, 2018

Quite the contrast: Senator Manny vs Adrien Broner

By Barry Wilner, Associated Press NEW YORK (AP) — Dressed in a sharp gray suit and tie, Manny Pacquiao looked every bit the senator he is. It was his other job, though, that he was working Monday when the eight-time champion announced a Jan. 19 defense of his WBA welterweight belt against Adrien Broner. "He's one of the top boxers out there," Pacquiao said of Broner, who attended the news conference in slightly different garb: torn jeans adorned with spangles, a T-shirt and black jacket. "Adrien Broner is a high-caliber fighter. "I have no problem to fight at 140 (pounds), it's my natural weight. I can't say I am avoiding (opponents), that is not my style. I am willing to find other fighters to fight, too, I am available to fight at 140, 147. It is 147 for this fight." Pacquiao will be 40 when he enters the ring at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas to take on the 29-year-old Broner. It will be the Filipino's 70th fight in a career that began in 1995 and has included titles in weight classes from flyweight to welterweight. He hasn't fought in the United States in two years. Referred to by his followers as Senator Manny, Pacquiao won and then lost the WBO welterweight crown following his lopsided loss to Floyd Mayweather in a May 2015 megafight. In July, he knocked out Lucas Matthysse for the WBA title, Pacquiao's first KO victory since 2009 when he stopped Miguel Cotto in the final round. His government role will be placed aside, Pacquiao claims, while he prepares for Broner. "My opponent is fast, good, and I have to work hard and train hard so the people will be happy on Jan. 19 when we give them a good fight," said Pacquiao, who flashed a mischievous smile when asked if another encounter with the currently retired Mayweather might be in the future. "I am fighting Adrien Broner," Pacquiao said, adding he was with Mayweather in Japan and mentioned that he, not Mayweather, owned a belt, so "you come challenge me." Broner views this as his chance to "become a legend." As he strutted around the stage, his words at first were respectful toward Pacquiao, whom Broner "dreamed of fighting when I was a kid." Soon, though, Broner was back to being Broner, the boastful, say-anything-character who likes talking trash as much as throwing leather. "He ain't fighting Floyd, he's fighting me," Broner said. "He's gotta get past me first. "Of course, things he's done in the game are unbelievable. I know Jan. 19 I gotta be at the top of my game. I'm gonna (mess) him up." Broner, from Cincinnati, is 33-3-1 with 24 knockouts. But he didn't win either of his most recent fights, losing a unanimous decision to Mikey Garcia, who won his 36th straight, in July last year, and then drawing with Jessie Vargas. Which means recent results indicate neither he nor Pacquiao is in his prime or close to it. Still, they are big enough names for Showtime to put the fight on pay-per-view television. Both men were asked if they are elite boxers now. Neither flinched in answering. "Yes, of course," Pacquiao insisted. "I want to fight the greatest opponents in the world and one of them is Adrien Broner. I can fight anybody." Broner shook his head and smirked when queried on his skill level these days. "I'm gonna do me; he's gotta worry about what I do," Broner said. "I know what he can do. "I got three losses, he's got (seven). He's been knocked out; we know he can go to sleep. I got the stuff to do it. I'll hit the jackpot overnight.".....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 20th, 2018

ONE Championship: Eduard Folayang Wants To Celebrate His Birthday With A World Title Win

With his highly-anticipated encounter against Singapore’s Amir Khan for the vacant ONE Lightweight World Championship set to take place a day after his birthday, local hero Eduard “Landslide” Folayang cannot think of a better present for himself than to have a gold-plated belt wrapped around his waist once again. The Filipino superstar will celebrate his 35th birthday on Thursday, 22 November, a day before his scheduled five-round championship bout with Khan in the co-main event of ONE: CONQUEST OF CHAMPIONS, which emanates from the 20,000-capacity Mall Of Asia Arena in Manila. “There’s no greater gift I can receive on my 35th birthday other than winning the ONE Lightweight Word Title back,’’ he expressed. “And there’s no better place to do it but in front of my countrymen.” After relinquishing his lightweight crown to Martin “The Situ-Asian” Nguyen in November 2017, Folayang immediately went back to the drawing board to check where things went wrong. He amazingly worked his way back to the upper echelon of the talent-filled lightweight division — first dominating Kharun Atlangeriev in three rounds last May, and then edging out Aziz Pahrudinov in a 15-minute thriller two months later. The Baguio City native treats the opportunity of reclaiming the ONE Lightweight World Championship both as a reward and vindication. “There were some who doubted my decision to continue fighting after the knockout loss to Martin Nguyen nearly a year ago. After two wins in ONE Championship, I am back in the title picture,” Folayang stated. “I feel very fulfilled because I made the right decision to compete again. Also, my hard work has paid off. It will be a great birthday present for me to bring home the belt again. It's an added motivation going into the bout against Amir Khan.” Even if he is pegged as the heavy favorite to win the bout against the Singaporean, Folayang stressed that he is not taking his opponent for granted. Khan holds the exceptional records for the most wins (11) and finishes (10) in ONE Championship, scoring impressive victories over the likes of Bashir Ahmad, Jimmy Yabo, Jaroslav Jartim, and Sung Jong Lee. The 24-year-old phenom is coming off the biggest win of his promotional stint yet, submitting Folayang’s Team Lakay stablemate Honorio “The Rock” Banario with a first-round rear-naked choke this past September. “Landslide” knows the Evolve MMA representative poses a dangerous threat, but he is confident of his chances. “He is young and talented. I am also sure that he is hungry,” Folayang said.  “There is no room for complacency in this match. Of course, the momentum is on my side, but I plan to sustain it. I started the year with a win. I followed it up with another big win. The timing speaks for itself.” In his return to the global stage, Folayang boldly predicts that fans in attendance at the Mall Of Asia Arena will witness the coronation of a fifth Filipino mixed martial arts World Champion on Friday. “2018 has been a very good year to me,” he continued. “After November 23, I’m confident that the Philippines and Team Lakay will have another new world champion in the sport.”.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 19th, 2018

ONE: Folayang eyes double celebration vs Khan in Manila

Eduard Folayang couldn't think of a better gift for his birthday than being a world champion again. The Filipino MMA star eyes to regain the ONE lightweight title against Singaporean standout Amir Khan on November 23, a day after his 35th birthday, as one of the anticipated bouts in the Conquest of Champions card. Folayang will also shoot for the crown before his home crowd at Mall of Asia Arena, the same place where he also yielded his belt in a stunning knockout loss to Martin Nguyen last year. "There's no greater gift I can receive on my 35th birthday other than winning the ONE Lightweight Word Title back,'' he said. "And there's no better place to do it but in front of my countr...Keep on reading: ONE: Folayang eyes double celebration vs Khan in Manila.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsOct 22nd, 2018

Floyd Mayweather Jr. rematch is unfinished business, says Manny Pacquiao

Over the weekend, social media went into a frenzy as Floyd “Money” Mayweather Jr. announced on his Instagram account that he would be coming out of retirement for a rematch with Manny Pacquiao. It was easy to shrug the news off, but then Pacquiao responded on his Instagram with a post of his own and fueling the talks of a potential rematch. As it turns out, the little Instagram back-and-forth could actually turn out to be a legitimate fight announcement.  According to Senior Ring Magazine writer Mike Coppinger, the rematch is already in the advanced stage of negotiations, with the fight being planned for Las Vegas and December 1 or December 8 as target dates. Breaking: Talks for #MayweatherPacquiao2 are in the advanced stages and it’s expected there will be contracts out this week, according to industry sources. Once finalized, the fight will likely land in Las Vegas and two target dates are Dec. 1 and Dec. 8 — Mike Coppinger (@MikeCoppinger) September 17, 2018  In his first interview since the interaction with Mayweather, Pacquiao basically confirmed that the fight is happening.   "Well, he’s announcing his comeback from retirement, so he wants to fight, he challenged me, he wants get my belt." Mayweather has mostly been retired since late-2015, returning to action last year for a big money super-fight with UFC star Conor McGregor. Pacquiao on the other hand, has remained active, save for a brief eight-month retirement perioid in 2016. Last July, Pacquiao captured his eleventh-world championship by defeating Lucas Matthysse for the WBA (Regular) Welterweight World Championship in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Pacquiao himself confirmed that he and Mayweather are indeed in negotiation-mode, without giving away too much information.  "Right now we’re in the middle of negotiations, hoping to finalize that." Pacquiao shared with Dyan Castillejo of ABS-CBN News. "Sa ngayon, pag-uusapan pa yung negotiations, we’re in the middle of negotiations, so hindi pa natin masabi kung kailan or kung ano yung exact date." "I’m always available. I’m always available for him." Pacquiao added.  @mannypacquiao says @FloydMayweather wants his belt and they will continue to discuss details of planned superfight #MP #TMT pic.twitter.com/nZCOW4sByN — DYAN CASTILLEJO (@DYANCASTILLEJO) September 17, 2018 I’m always available for him . @mannypacquiao to @FloydMayweather #MP #TMT pic.twitter.com/5nf01HrZz3 — DYAN CASTILLEJO (@DYANCASTILLEJO) September 17, 2018 If the fight does push through, it will be a highly-anticipated rematch of their 2015 bout, which saw Mayweather emerge victorious via Unanimous Decision after twelve rounds.  For Pacquiao, he feels that he has some unfinished business with the unbeaten fighter, which is why he's pushing for the rematch to happen.  "Ang importante ay matuloy na para makita, para hindi unfinished business yung kaming dalawa. Para bang nanakawan tayo ng panalo and matagal na panahon ang hinintay natin." The eight-division boxing world champion is confident that he can come out with the win this time around.  "Right now, alam ko na yung gagawin ko." As far as his training is concerned, Pacquiao has yet to reveal where he'll be holding camp. For his bout against Matthysse, Pacquiao held camp in his gym in General Santos, with close friend Buboy Fernandez overseeing matters.  "Kung saan man ako mag-training, basta I’ll put myself through strict and disciplined training." the 39-year old boxer-turned-statesman said.      @mannypacquiao on @FloydMayweather as unfinished business pic.twitter.com/YiUU3gdAhI — DYAN CASTILLEJO (@DYANCASTILLEJO) September 17, 2018.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 17th, 2018

Pacquiao stops Matthysse

Clinches WBA welterweight belt KUALA LUMPUR, (AFP) - Manny Pacquiao rolled back the years as he stopped WBA welterweight champion Lucas Matthysse on Sunday — the 39-year-old Filipino icon’s first knockout win since 2009. It was a dominant, devastating display as “smoking hot” Pacquiao registered the 60th win of a….....»»

Category: newsSource:  journalRelated NewsJul 15th, 2018

Billionare Manny: I’m ready, I’m hungry

KUALA LUMPUR --- Boxing legend Manny Pacquiao weighed in at a comfortable 146 pounds, well under the 147-pound (67-kilogram) limit on Saturday, and said he was "ready" to win back the welterweight belt against World Boxing Association (WBA) champion Lucas Matthysse of Argentina.   "I am ready. I am motivated, I am happy and I am hungry," said the 39-year-old Pacquiao, the only man to have won world titles in eight weight divisions in a glittering 23-year career.   Amid the noise inside his packed VIP room, now Senator Pacquiao briefly reflected on his phenomenal career.   "Back then only true boxing fans watched my fights," he said. "Now heads of stat...Keep on reading: Billionare Manny: I’m ready, I’m hungry.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsJul 14th, 2018

Experts’ Eye: Donaire vs. Frampton - Part 2: More To Gain, More to Lose

With just a few days to go before the highly-anticipated showdown between four-division world champion Nonito Donaire Jr. and two-division world champion Carl Frampton for the WBO Interim Featherweight World Championship, it’s time to see what the experts have to say about this upcoming matchup. We asked three boxing experts for their two cents on the upcoming featherweight clash between Donaire Jr. and Frampton: Nigel Collins - Boxing Writer for ESPN, former Editor-in-Chief for Ring Magazine, International Boxing Hall of Famer Brian Campbell - Combat Sports Writer for CBS Sports. Former host and writer for ESPN and Grantland. Atty. Ed Tolentino - Veteran Philippine sportswriter and boxing analyst for ABS-CBN Sports.   In this second installment, we ask who’s got more to gain from capturing the WBO Interim Featherweight World Championship, Nonito Donaire Jr. or Carl Frampton?  — — Nigel Collins Winning the WBO interim featherweight title would put Donaire in line for a shot at WBO 126-pound titleholder Oscar Valdez. The same is true for Frampton, but at this stage of his career he could bounce back from a loss easier than Donaire. On the other hand, if Frampton loses in a definitive manner on his home turf, it would be such a massive blow to his career he might seriously consider retiring from the ring.   Brian Campbell Between the two, Donaire has more to gain from this fight even if you remove the interim title from the equation. While Donaire has never quite had a bad enough losing skid where the topic of retirement was ever seriously broached, he remains firmly in the twilight of what has been a great professional career. A victory of this caliber over a prime fighter the talent and name value of Frampton would be a major feather in Donaire's cap, and would instantly catapult him back into the fray as one of the top 126-pound fighters in the world. The fight also has large value for Frampton but it has more to do with getting Donaire's name as a victory on his record and building toward a fight against the very best in the division. This fight represents a stepping stone for Frampton where as for Donaire, it could be his final shot at a fight this important.    Atty. Ed Tolentino Winning the interim belt  will provide the winner with a shot at the regular title held by Oscar Valdez. In fact, if Valdez moves up in weight or gives up the crown, the interim champ will be promoted to regular world champ. Right now, Frampton has more to gain if he wins because at his age, he still has plenty of fighting years left. Donaire, at 35, is looking to simply extend his career with a win. For Donaire, every fight could be his last fight. For Frampton, Donaire is just a ticket towards a return to the featherweight throne which he once held. — —   In Part One, all three of our experts were unanimous in saying that the younger, more aggressive Carl Frampton is the favorite over Nonito Donaire Jr. This time around, we see a bit of differing opinions, with Nigel Collins and Brian Campbell saying that a WBO Interim Featherweight World Title win would do a lot more for Donaire. Understandably so.   If Donaire can manage a win over a guy who’s in the upper half of the division in terms of rankings, aside from becoming the WBO’s Interim 126-pound champ, it also significantly raises Donaire’s place in the rankings as well. Atty. Ed Tolentino on the other hand argues that while beating Frampton will do Donaire a lot of good, it doesn’t change the fact that ‘The Filipino Flash’ is on the tail end of his illustrious career. Collins however adds that a loss to Donaire could ultimately force Frampton into retirement. — — Donaire or Frampton? Who’s got more to gain? Be sure you don’t miss out on this massive featherweight matchup! Watch on Sunday, April 22nd, 6:30 PM on ABS-CBN S+A channel 23! You can also catch the fight LIVE on Sunday, April 22nd, 2:30 AM on SKY Sports Pay-Per-View for only P199! Watch out for more Experts’ Eye soon!.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 17th, 2018

Pacquiao responds to Roach situation: I have not made my final decision

Over the weekend, news surfaced that eight-division boxing world champion Manny Pacquiao won’t be working with long-time Hall of Fame trainer Freddie Roach for his upcoming WBA Welterweight World Title match against champion Lucas Mathysse in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia this July. In a press statement, the Pacquiao camp named best friend Buboy Fernandes and Nonoy Neri as the trainers. Roach responded to the statement saying that he wishes his former ward well, but admitted that he was hurt by how the situation unfolded. Pacquiao and Roach have worked together for the last 15-plus years, and have 34 professional fights and seven world championships under their belt. Now, it seems as though the split isn’t as certain as was once thought…yet. In an Instagram post early Monday morning, Pacquiao clarified the situation surrounding him and Roach.   Contrary to statements which I personally did not make that are circulating in the media, I have not made my final decision who will be my head trainer for my July 14 fight with Matthysse. My advisor Mike Koncz has been in contact with Freddie’s people to keep them informed. I will make a final decision within the week. When that decision is made, Freddie will be the first one to be informed and then I will advise the media. #PacquiaoMatthysse A post shared by Manny Pacquiao (@mannypacquiao) on Apr 15, 2018 at 12:34pm PDT “Contrary to statements which I personally did not make that are circulating in the media, I have not made my final decision who will be my head trainer for my July 14 fight with Matthysse.” Pacquiao’s post, which shows him hitting the mitts with Roach read. “My advisor Mike Koncz has been in contact with Freddie’s people to keep them informed. I will make a final decision within the week.” It was Koncz that first revealed that things between Pacquiao and Roach weren't exactly peachy, saying in an interview with ESPN's Dan Rafael that the boxer-turned-senator took issue to some of the things that Roach said to the media following Pacquiao's loss to Jeff Horn in Australia back in 2017.  In Roach’s statement over the weekend, he revealed that he had been hurt by the fact that Pacquiao did not reach out to him personally to inform him of the supposed change. Pacquiao ends his post by addressing that statement. “When that decision is made, Freddie will be the first one to be informed and then I will advise the media.” Does this mean that Pacquiao and Roach are not going their separate ways after all?.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 16th, 2018

BLOGTABLE: 2018 pre-playoffs predictions

NBA.ph blogtable 1) Which first-round series in the West is most likely to see an upset result (lower seed beating higher seed)? Enzo Flojo: For sure it’s Portland-New Orleans. I love Damian Lillard’s game, but the Pels are a really tough bunch with a lot of weapons, even sans Boogie Cousins. Jusuf Nurkic will have a really tough time containing AD; that’s one reason this has a high potential for an upset! Migs Bustos: The Jazz and Thunder matchup. It's a tale of upward momentum versus inconsistency. The Jazz have won seven out of their last 10 games, and OKC are 5-5 in their last 10. With how the Jazz are playing great team basketball, led by super rookie, Donovan Mitchell, they have a great chance of upsetting the erratic OKC Thunder. If maganda ang gising ng Utah for four games, may tulog ang OKC sa kanila. Marco Benitez: I think the Thunder-Jazz series is the one where most likely we will see an upset. The Thunder experiment of Westbrook-George-Anthony has been up and down all season, while the Jazz are a well-coached team anchored on a great defensive presence in Gobert. The Thunder win if Westbrook dominates the game and Adams is able to neutralize Gobert. But if OKC becomes stagnant on offense and their usual selves defensively, then the Jazz can wreck havoc on this matchup. Favian Pua: Portland Trail Blazers vs. New Orleans Pelicans: In order for the Pelicans to stun the Blazers, Anthony Davis must cement his status as the best player on both ends of the floor throughout the series. A Playoff Rondo sighting paired with the feisty defense of Jrue Holiday should stymie the backcourt attack of Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum. Adrian Dy: If it turns out Kawhi Leonard was just saving himself for a postseason run, then the Spurs would absolutely wreck the Stephen Curry-less Golden State Warriors. Barring such a comeback though, I'm riding high on the Pelicans. The Blazers don't have the bigs to even slow down Davis, and the Jrue Holiday + Playoffs Rajon Rondo combo could make things really tough for Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum 2) Which first-round series in the East is most likely to see an upset result (lower seed beating higher seed)? Enzo Flojo: Don’t look past the veteran-laden Miami Heat. Philadelphia is by far the deeper team, sure, but if Embiid is hampered by his injury and both D-Wade and Goran Dragic have their way, Miami can push the Sixers to the distance and an upset may not be that surprising. Also, coach Spo shines in 7-game series! Migs Bustos: In the East, it's a bit more challenging. We all know about the success of the Sixers this season; no matter what seed Lebron's team is, it will be hard to upset them; the Raptors have been long consistent at the number 1 spot all season. So, the best bet would be the Bucks overthrowing home court advantage. And this is because Kyrie is out of the season. It's just up to Giannis and Co. to take advantage of that disadvantage by the Celtics to pull through. Marco Benitez: The plague of injuries to the Boston Celtics really hurt their chances of contending in the East, much less win a championship this season. Without Kyrie, Marcus Smart, and Gordon Hayward, the Celtics are vulnerable against the Greek Freak-led Bucks, who are long and talented. With that being said, Boston is still an extremely well-coached, albeit young team, and Giannis will have to be the best player on the floor for most of the series for the inconsistent Bucks to pull off the upset. Favian Pua: Philadelphia 76ers vs. Miami Heat: Though the Sixers are rolling into the playoffs, only J.J. Redick and Marco Belinelli can boast of a legitimate postseason resume. Led by All-Star Goran Dragic, the Heat are an unrelenting unit of two-way veterans who can both muck it up inside and bait opponents into a long-range shootout. Joel Embiid’s uncertain status will force Sixers head coach Brett Brown to find a counter for Hassan Whiteside. Adrian Dy: Though I have the 76ers advancing, it wouldn't surprise me if the Heat shut down Ben Simmons and shut up Joel Embiid. Erik Spoelstra has a knack for getting the best out of his squads, Dwyane Wade could have some clutch moments, and if the aforementioned Embiid doesn't return as soon as expected, South Beach could be singing after round one. 3) Which team that missed the playoffs has the best shot at making it next season? Enzo Flojo: I’d love to say Denver, but their being in the West really makes their window tight. That’s why I’m picking the Detroit Pistons, who have enough talent to make quite a big impact in the East, especially if their big names (e.g. Drummond, Griffin, Jackson) all stay put and stay healthy! Migs Bustos: To be honest, there are not much compelling story lines on teams that barely missed the playoffs this year. There's nothing like one of the most recent examples -- the Heat's 2016-2017 season where they made a late season run but just missed it at .500 (41-41), or how about Phoenix having a winning record at 48-34 in the 2013-2014 season missing out? The 16 teams were more or less 'predicted' to make the postseason this year so there wasn't a big surprise. Marco Benitez: I think a healthy Memphis Grizzlies team, with Conley, Gasol, Parsons and Tyreke Evans (assuming all are still with the Grizzlies next season) will be a lock to make the playoffs after a disappointing 22-60 win-loss record this season that saw a season-ending surgery for Conley happen in late January. Favian Pua: The Denver Nuggets. Nikola Jokic and his ragtag bunch of scorers were an overtime loss away against the Minnesota Timberwolves from getting their first taste of the postseason. To do so, the Nuggets will need to handle their business and take care of bottom-feeders, as it was backbreaking losses to the Memphis Grizzlies and Dallas Mavericks in March that prevented them from securing an outright playoff berth. Adrian Dy: The Dallas Mavericks. Dirk Nowitzki will likely want to go out with a bang, Rick Carlisle is still a really good coach, Dennis Smith Jr. is a fantastic attacking guard, and if the lotto balls bounce the right way, they could return to the upper echelon of the West. 4) Which team that made these playoffs has the biggest chance of missing it next season? Enzo Flojo: It may sound crazy, but the Spurs are at great risk for next season. Kawhi continues to be a huge question mark and their veterans will get even older in 2018-2019. They nearly didn’t make it this year, and next year could be the tipping point! Migs Bustos: I'd have to go with the San Antonio Spurs. No doubt all of the other teams are on the up-swing, and they all boast of youth. If Kahwi does not play for the Spurs next season, expect younger teams with great potential like the Nuggets and Lakers to overtake SAS. Marco Benitez: Depending on what happens in terms of offseason trades, and assuming that the rest of the Western Conference regains full strength next season, the two teams I feel have the biggest chance of missing the playoffs next season are Miami and New Orleans. For Miami, DWade is not getting any younger, and Hassan Whiteside has not been at a consistent All-Star level all season. With Blake Griffin and Andre Drummond getting a full year under their belt in Detroit and Kristaps Porzingis back at full strength in New York, I see Miami as the most likely team to get bumped off in the East next season. For New Orleans, the Davis-Cousins experiment did not necessarily turn them into a legitimate playoff contender in the West, and when Cousins fell to injury, they've had to rely on AD to carry them almost entirely on his shoulders. With the ultra competitive West getting healthier next season, unless the Pels are able to get better on the wings -- assuming of course Cousins doesn't bolt in the offseason -- they may find themselves out of the playoffs. Favian Pua: Cleveland Cavaliers. Hinging on the premise that LeBron James bolts for the Sixers or Los Angeles Lakers in free agency this offseason, the Cavaliers are headed for a massive nosedive towards the number one pick in the 2019 draft. No other team has more to lose than the Cavaliers this postseason, and it is highly probable that winning the title is the only way The King stays in The Land. Adrian Dy: If we get another round of LeBron James free agency sweepstakes, and he winds up getting the Banana Boat Gang together in Houston, it's hard to see the Cleveland Cavaliers being competitive, let alone back in the Eastern Conference playoffs. Should that happen, I'd expect them to trade guys like Kevin Love, and hope that lotto luck favors them anew. 5) Which team is your early favorite to win it all? Enzo Flojo: Despite all the injuries and all their inconsistencies, the Warriors are still my odds-on fave to win it all. They have four big time playoff performers, and they know this is where their real season begins. Migs Bustos: Don't count out the Warriors. Even though they have been plagued with injuries towards the end of the season, the Dubs will hope that they will be healthy in time and turn 'on' the button with their championship experience Marco Benitez: Still the Warriors. Although they'll be without Steph in the first round, I foresee the same dominant Dubs starting the second round all the way to the Finals. The regular season has been a bit of a drag for them this season, and I believe that's why we haven't seen the same Warriors squad as that of past years. But come playoffs, there's no reason why the defending champs don't get locked in; and when they do, frankly, there's still no better team in the league than Golden State. Favian Pua: The Houston Rockets. The playoffs is all about trimming the fat in the roster and letting star power take over in the biggest moments. In James Harden and Chris Paul, the Rockets will always have at least one elite shot creator and facilitator on the court for all 48 minutes. Flanked by capable three-point shooters and wing defenders acquired specifically to neutralize the Golden State Warriors’ juggernaut, Clutch City is on track for its first Larry O’Brien trophy since 1995. Adrian Dy: Yes the defending champions are banged-up and looked uninterested as the regular season wound down, but now that it's winning time, I expect the Warriors to do their thing, although there's no way it'll be as smooth as their 16-1 romp last season......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 14th, 2018

Eight NBA Playoffs storylines to watch

By David Aldridge, TNT Analyst Suddenly, we’re not quite as certain that Warriors-Cavs, Part IV, Sure to be Way Better than “Jaws: The Revenge” and “Superman IV: The Quest for Peace”, is going to make air, are we? The 2018 playoffs are just about here, and Stephen Curry isn’t, and Kyrie Irving won’t be, and Joel Embiid might be, and Jimmy Butler will be -- if his team is, that is. And both conference champions from a year ago are equally unsettled going into the postseason, for different reasons. The Golden State Warriors are banged up, while the Cleveland Cavaliers are brand new. Golden State hasn’t looked like an offensive leviathan, while Cleveland has been one of the league’s worst defenses. And, most importantly, each has legit challengers this year in Houston and Toronto in its respective conferences -- deep, tough, elite defensively, hard to stop offensively, and tempered/hardened/driven by recent playoff failures. Which should make late May and early June even more compelling than normal. At the least, we’ll have the Warriors going for three rings in four years, and LeBron James going for an eighth straight Finals appearance -- each representing something special. The postseason, then, should provide some theatre that Meryl Streep will drop what she’s doing to watch. Among the biggest storylines: 1. The Hinkie Referendum, Passed The Philadelphia 76ers’ scintillating run to end the regular season sets up them for a glorious postseason run, that will finalize a season in which the decisions by former GM Sam Hinkie -- the successful ones, anyway -- are rightly celebrated. (The failures of Jahlil Okafor and Michael Carter-Williams to fire as stars after Hinkie took each high in the first round are not only not ignored by Hinkie’s biggest supporters, they are cited as proof that he had to do what he did for as long as he did, because you’re going to have some misses at the top of the Draft. God, I love Hinkie Stans.) It says here that a healthy Joel Embiid and an exponentially improving Ben Simmons are the one team that can give LeBron’s Cavs true night sweats in the Kyrie-less east playoffs. Embiid is a problem for any team, but especially for the defensively indifferent and ineffective Cavaliers, who have no one remotely capable of keeping “The Process” from running wild. Since New Year’s Day, only Curry (120.4), Chris Paul (116.1) and Jamal Murray (114.7) have better Offensive Ratings among point guards than Simmons’s 113.9, per NBA.com/Stats. Who, from among George Hill (6'3"), Jose Calderon (6'1"), Jordan Clarkson (6'5") and J.R. Smith (6'5") is Cavs coach Tyronn Lue going to put on the 6'10" Simmons? Yes, Lue could try James on Simmons, who is no threat to shoot from deep or run through a maze of pindowns. But that doesn’t make him any easier to slow down. No matter who Philly plays in the postseason, the Sixers are going to be a problem. 2. Indiana George and the Tempo of Doom It’s taken the Oklahoma City Thunder much longer than any of us thought, but OKC is a win from the postseason (even if the Thunder can’t beat the Heat in Miami tonight, the Cancun-bound Memphis Grizzlies will be in Oklahoma City Wednesday). And that’s when Paul George will determine whether his future is in the 405 or elsewhere. The Thunder’s up-and-down regular season doesn’t provide much clue to how far they could go in the playoffs, thought OKC looked formidable in ending the Rockets’ 20-game home win streak Saturday (Sunday, PHL time). It was a game that featured Russell Westbrook successfully taking on the challenge of defending James Harden down the stretch. When Oklahoma City plays with pace and gets up and down the floor, it can beat anyone. The Thunder will likely have to take down an elite unit like Houston at some point in the playoffs to convince George to stay. 3. A Series of Fortunate Events With Irving’s injury, the Washington Wizards’ failure to launch and other maladies to Eastern Conference contenders, the Cavaliers have an increasingly clear path back to The Finals. Doing this is best way to keep LeBron: The Sequel in town for an extended run, but the proof will be in the doing, of course. Cleveland will need Larry Nance, Jr., Rodney Hood and Jordan Clarkson to perform under playoff pressure, which Nance and Clarkson have never had to do and Hood did briefly in the 2017 playoffs with the Utah Jazz. 4. She packed my bags last night, pre-flight/Zero Hour, 9 a.m The Rockets have been the best team in the league most of this season -- an offensive and defensive juggernaut, the logical extension at both ends of the floor of the standards the Warriors set the last few seasons. James Harden will likely walk away with Kia MVP honors after the season and Chris Paul has been everything Houston hoped he’d be. But Houston must finish the deal with a championship to make its own mark. 5. Jurassic Park Everything is set up for Toronto, as well -- the Raptors have the Eastern Conference’s best record and are tied with Houston for the best home record (34-7) in the league. They have home court until The Finals. Their two lynchpins, All-Stars DeMar DeRozan and Kyle Lowry, are healthy. They’ve diversified their offense and learned to love the 3-pointer. They’re back to guarding at an elite level. The East is laid out open for a Toronto run to The Finals. There’s no excuse for the Raps not to. 6. ‘Brow’, Beating We don’t know for sure that the New Orleans Pelicans will make the playoffs. As of this writing, they haven’t clinched yet, although beating the Warriors in Oakland on Saturday went a long way toward their getting to the postseason. But assuming New Orleans is playing next weekend, its success in the playoffs can only help the franchise as it recovers from the recent death of former owner Tom Benson. “The Brow” (aka Anthony Davis) may have got us on April Fool’s Day, but the next couple of weeks will be dead serious. What if the Pelicans manage a first-round upset? Don’t say it’s not possible with the way Davis is playing. That would go an awful long way to quieting the “How the Boston Celtics Will Get Anthony Davis in 2020, Vol. MCMLXXXVII” hot takes. 7.  The Boston Medical Group The Celtics as imagined played exactly five minutes together this season. Everything that’s transpired since has been wrapped in gauze and sutured shut. Kyrie Irving’s latest knee procedure has everyone hopping off the Celtics’ postseason bandwagon -- a mistake, unless coach Brad Stevens pulls a hammy before Game 1 in the first round. Stevens has coached up whatever 12 guys are active pretty damn well since he’s come to the NBA, and he’ll still have a lot to work with in the playoffs: Al Horford, Jaylen Brown, Jayson Tatum and Terry Rozier (the Celtics hope they can get Marcus Smart back after the first round). The bigger issue, of course, is Irving’s health going forward -- and into next season, after which he can opt out of the last year of his deal and become an unrestricted free agent in 2019. The current belief in Boston is that Irving’s knee -- the cartilage, ligaments, tendons and bones -- is sound and that he’ll have no long-term issues with it. But Irving and the team thought taking out the tension wire that had helped heal his broken patella after his 2015 surgery would do the trick. It didn’t.   There should be no doubt Boston will be all in on Irving. But after missing these playoffs after going out in Game 1 of the Finals in ’15, Irving will again have to show he’s able to handle a season-long campaign and still be able to bring his best to the postseason. 8. Bah Gawd, That’s Kawhi Leonard’s Music! We have all worked on the assumption that Leonard isn’t going to play for the Spurs any more this season as he rehabs his quad injury, even though they’ve never quite actually said he’s out for the year -- and he, as per usual, has said next to nothing. The Spurs have ridden LaMarcus Aldridge’s All-NBA-level season to the cusp of the playoffs, but no one has much expectation they’ll be there very long if they make it without their former Finals MVP. “Do I have any expectation I’ll see Kawhi?,” Danny Green said a week ago, repeating my question to him. “As of right now, my mindset is no. I’m just going to forward without him … if he does come back, great. Our mindset is this is the group we have today, this is the group we’ll have tomorrow. If somebody does come and join, we’ll have them and it’ll be great. But right now we’re moving forward with the expectation that this is who we have.” But, it’s not like we haven’t seen guys come back suddenly for the playoffs after missing large chunks of a season. A fellow named Michael Jordan played just 18 regular season games in his second season with the Bulls in 1986, recovering from a foot injury and not returning to the lineup until mid-March. True, he did get 15 games under his belt before the playoffs. But that did not prepare anyone for his showing up in Boston Garden in Game 2 of the first round against the Celtics and dropping 63 on the home team. There are, to be sure, issues between Leonard and the Spurs, and maybe they’re insurmountable. But if, somehow, “The Klaw” wakes up one morning this month and says he’s good to go, and reports for duty … who doesn’t think San Antonio can’t start assimilating opponents into its collective just like old times? Longtime NBA reporter, columnist and Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Famer David Aldridge is an analyst for TNT. You can e-mail him here, find his archive here and follow him on Twitter. The views on this page do not necessarily reflect the views of the NBA, its clubs or Turner Broadcasting......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 10th, 2018

‘This is ours’ - New ONE interim champion Geje Eustaquio dedicates title to fellow Filipinos

  Friday night at the Mall of Asia Arena, Team Lakay flyweight Geje ‘Gravity’ Eustaquio brought another championship back to the Philippines, as he bested former ONE flyweight world champion Kairat ‘The Kazakh’ Akhmetov by Unanimous Decision to become the new ONE interim flyweight champion. It was a true test for the Pinoy, who showcased his elite striking and his ever-improving grappling game to earn the judges’ nod after five rounds of action. “The feeling is unexplainable,” Eustaquio said during the post-fight press conference and talked about his teammates Honorio Banario and Eduard Folayang both having runs as ONE world champions. “Honorio had this before, Kuya Eduard had it, he defended it one time. We’re proud and I’m happy, the feeling is unexplainable because one more time, we have this one in The Land of The Orient Pearl.” As far as the Baguio City native is concerned, the new piece of hardware that he’ll be bringing back home to the famed Team Lakay gym isn’t solely his, rather it’s an honor he shares with everyone, from his team, his family, and also his fellow Filipinos. “Every fighter who stands in that cage, dreams to have this one, and I’m proud, with the people on my back, we have this, and one more time, this is not mine, this is ours.” “To all the Filipinos out there, this is ours, to the people who are there on my back since day one, this is ours.” added Eustaquio. “This is a product of team work, it’s not just Gravity who came up to the cage and grabbed this belt. It’s not about me, it’s about the people who stand in my back, its about the people who cheered, who go to Mall of Asia Arena, who watch on their TV in order for this sport to grow.” Along with former featherweight king Banario and former lightweight king Folayang, Eustaquio becomes just the third member of Team Lakay to bring home ONE gold. Furthermore, he becomes just the fourth Filipino to become a ONE world champion, including reigning ONE heavyweight champion Brandon Vera. This isn’t Eustaquio’s first dance for gold however, as he challenged for the vacant flyweight world title back in 2014, losing via submission to current champion Adriano Moraes. With the interim title in his possession, Eustaquio will soon get another crack at Moraes to unify their flyweight champsionships. When asked about his inevitable matchup with the reigning champ, Eustaquio’s response was simple. “If he’s ready, I’m ready. Rock and roll, let’s go.” Eustaquio said with his usual calm confidence. “As I said, I got the best in the business on my back, they can prepare me anytime, anywhere.”.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 29th, 2018

Milan Melindo out to capture second world title in Japan

Earlier this year, ALA Boxing standout and reigning IBF junior flyweight world champion Milan 'El Metodico' Melindo captured his first world championship in Japan, shocking the world by knocking out long-time champion Akira Yaegashi.  On New Year's Eve, Melindo has the chance to end the year pretty much the same way, as he steps into the squared circle on the final day of 2017 to challenge reiging WBA junior flyweight world champion Ryoichi Taguchi in a title unification bout, Sunday in Tokyo, Japan.  2017 has been nothing short of spectacular for the 29-year old Melindo.  After knocking out Yaegashi in Tokyo back in May, Melindo successfully defended his title at home in Cebu at Pinoy Pride 41 against South Africa's Hekkie Budler in an entertaining twelve-round affair.  After capturing the IBF belt in May, Melindo made it clear that his goal was to become the king of the junior flyweights, intending on capturing all of the four major world titles in the 108-pound weight division.  "Parang super champion ka na, kung makuha mo yung apat na high-position belt, yung WBA, WBO, IBF tsaka WBC, parang king ka na sa isang timbang. Ikaw ang may hawak sa isang timbang." On New Year’s Eve, Melindo gets the chance to move a step closer to his goal when he tries to snatch the WBA title from Taguchi. It won’t be an easy task however, as Taguchi has kept a firm grasp on the crown since 2014, having successfully defended it seven times in the last two years. For the second time this year, Melindo faces a hostile pro-Japan crowd in Tokyo. For the Cagayan de Oro native, a repeat of history would be in his favor.   Milan Melindo and Ryoichi Taguchi battle for the IBF and WBA junior flyweight belts on Sunday, December 31st at the Ota City General Gymnasium in Tokyo, Japan. Catch the telecast on Tuesday, January 2nd at 8:00 PM only on S+A channel 23! .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 30th, 2017

Beijing evicts Chinese domestic migrants in droves, prompting outcry

BEIJING --- Zhou Xinci left her hometown in China's struggling rust belt four years ago for Beijing with little more than the clothes on her back and a dream to one day save enough money to buy a home. That dream is now fast unraveling as Zhou, 35, watches as her neighbors -- other low-income Chinese migrants like her -- are being hurriedly evicted from their homes on the outskirts of the capital by the government. Authorities in Beijing have launched sweeping evictions of workers who have migrated from elsewhere in the country, triggering a public outcry over the treatment of people the city depends on to build skyscrapers, care for children and take on other lowly paid work. ...Keep on reading: Beijing evicts Chinese domestic migrants in droves, prompting outcry.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsNov 28th, 2017

Magsayo retains WBO Int l Featherweight title

TAGBILARAN CITY, Bohol --- A world title fight could be in the horizon for undefeated Mark 'Magnifico' Magsayo. The hometown hero did not disappoint in his homecoming in this beautiful province in the Visayas as he successfully defended his WBO International Featherweight belt against Japanese challenger Shota Hayashi in a unanimous decision win Saturday in the sold out Bohol Wisdom Gymnasium here. Magsayo got an identical 116-112 scores from the three judges to wrap up the successful staging of Pinoy Pride 43 'The Battle in Bohol'. "Nahirapan din ako kasi di ko talaga in-expect ang tibay niya saka malakas talaga," said Magsayo, who battled a very game and tough Japanese veteran. "Matibay siya sa bodega saka sa mukha kaya medyo nahirapan ako."  The 22-year old Magsayo spoiled the birthday wish of Hayashi, who turned 30 Friday, with his 18th straight win in his return to this province famous for its majestic Chocolate Hills since his seventh win back in 2014. With an impressive 18-0 (13 KOs) record and a good performance in his fight, Magsayo could be heading into a world title bout against WBO Featherweight champ Oscar Valdez or a eliminator on March 2018. Hayashi dropped to 30-7-1 win-loss-draw record. Meanwhile, 'Prince' Albert Pagara knocked out Mohammed Kambuluta of Tanzania with 2:26 in the second round. Pagara floored Kambuluta early in the second round before finishing off the Tanzanian with a right straight for his 20th KO win in 28 victories against a lone loss. Kambuluta dropped to 17-4 win-loss card. Jeo 'Santino' Santisima pummeled Indonesian Ki Chang Kim to submission just 36 seconds into the opening round to score a magnificent knockout win in their junior featherweight bout. Santisima caught Kim with two body shots that dropped the Indonesian, who never recovered from the Pinoy's devastating body blows. Santisima improved his record to 15 wins, 14 from KOs, with two losses. Kim absorbed his fifth loss against eight wins and a draw. In other undercard results, Christian Bacolod opened the night with a sensational second round TKO win over Ryan Makiputin. Bacolod floored Makiputin twice in the second round before finishing off the fight with a barrage of combinations as the referee stepped in to stop the fight, 2:50 in the round. Roli Gasca made quick work of Boholano Jason Tinampay, knocking out the home crowd bet with a thunderous right uppercut to the jaw with 1:15 in the opening round.  Rocky Fuentes edged Ryan Tampus via unanimous decision (59-55, 60-54, 59-55) while Esneth Domingo dominated the score cards, 39-36, 40-36, 40-35, for a UD win over Lowell Saguisa. Melvin Jerusalem outpointed Jestoni Racoma in a unanimous decision win, 80-72, 80-72, 78-74. Another local bet in Virgel Vitor went home  victorious after getting the identical 97-93 scores from the judges against John Ray Logatiman in their Junior Featherweight bout.   Complete Pinoy Pride 43 Results Mark 'Magnifico' Magsayo def. Shota Hayashi via UD (116-112, 116-112, 116-112) 'Prince' Albert Pagara def. Mohammed Kambuluta via KO, 2:26 in the second round Jeo 'Santino' Santisima def. Ki Chang Kim via KO, 2:24 in the first round Virgel Vitor def. John Ray Logatiman via UD (97-93, 97-93, 97-93) Melvin Jerusalem def. Jestoni Racoma via UD (80-72, 80-72, 78-74) Esneth Domingo def. Lowell Saguisa via UD (39-36, 40-36, 40-35) Roli Gasca def. Jason Tinampay via knockout, 1:15 in the first round Rocky Fuentes def. Ryan Tampus via UD (59-55, 60-54, 59-55) Christian Bacolod def. Ryan Makiputin via TKO, 2:50 in the second round --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 25th, 2017

A must-check out fair for denim lovers

Anytime is a good time to shop for denim, yes? Absolutely! Whether you want to treat yourself for your birthday, give yourself a pat on the back through shopping, or simply have some much-needed retail therapy, you will surely find something fabulous to take home with you at this denim event. After its heavy shopper turnout last year, the 'DenimTreaty event returns this year with more exciting offerings for both men and women from big denim brands Freego, Freshgear, Wrangler, and Bobson. From SM North EDSA to SM Mall of Asia, Denim Treaty is now at the Midtown Atrium of Robinsons Place Manila, starting from October 10 to 16. Don’t miss this chance to avail of stylish denim finds for up to 60% off. Now that’s a steal! For a more fun shopping experience, cool activities (Balloon Burst, Memory, and Dice Games) and amazing prizes await shoppers! They can play these awesome games when they show a single-receipt purchase worth Php 2000. The event area also features a denim alteration booth that offers free services, and as you wait for your perfect-fitting denims, you can chill at the lounge area and ask for hot coffee (which is available for free for all shoppers). Make sure to check out the collection of Freego. Must-buys from Freego include the Yoga Jeans, Wonder Fit jeans, boyfriend jeans (which comes with a belt), and chambray tops.  Get ready for a wonderful shopping time and head to Denim Treaty at Midtown Atrium, Robinsons Place Manila now until October 16.  .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 13th, 2017

Heavyweight champ Parker hits the road to boost profile

em>By Steve Douglas, Associated Press /em> MANCHESTER, England (AP) — Fresh from getting his chest waxed and boasting a slick new haircut, heavyweight champion Joseph Parker arrived in a tailored two-piece suit for a final news conference before the second defense of his WBO belt. The New Zealander certainly looks the part outside the ring going into Saturday's fight against Hughie Fury in Manchester. What is still unknown is how he shapes up inside it. In a bid to strengthen his 'brand' and gain exposure in the boxing world, the 25-year-old Parker is hitting the road after fighting in his native country for 12 of his last 13 bouts. Britain is his first stop. The plan is to beat Fury, the 23-year-old cousin of former world heavyweight champion Tyson Fury, to improve his record to 24-0 and potentially set up a showdown with WBA and IBF champion Anthony Joshua. 'I feel like the UK is where the heavyweight scene is at, at the moment,' Parker said on Thursday at Old Trafford, home of storied soccer team Manchester United. 'We want to be a part of it. We feel it's important to come here and make a statement.' Question marks remain over New Zealand's first heavyweight champion, though. His trainer, Kevin Barry, acknowledged that Parker was not at his best in his last two fights — the victory on points over Andy Ruiz Jr. that earned him the WBO strap and then an underwhelming first successful defense of the belt against Razvan Cojanu, also on points, in May. He dreams of becoming as well-known as the All Blacks rugby team but he still has a low profile outside New Zealand and the WBO belt is still regarded as the flimsiest of the heavyweight titles. The fight against Fury is even going under the radar in Britain, with only 5,000 tickets sold for the 21,000-capacity Manchester Arena. YouTube — rather than a TV broadcaster — is showing it. It's time for Parker to send a message to the rest of the heavyweight division. 'We know the size of this challenge,' Barry said. 'We have an opportunity, here in our first fight in the UK, to look spectacular.' Given Fury has a reputation for being as unpredictable and awkward to fight as his more illustrious cousin, that won't be easy. Not only that, Fury hasn't fought in around 18 months while he battled to overcome an energy-sapping skin condition that has affected him throughout his professional career. Fury, who is unbeaten in 20 fights, says he is feeling '100 percent' for the first time as a boxer, so neither fighter really knows what to expect. The fight is also being staged in Fury's home city, after the original fight — scheduled to take place in Auckland in May — was canceled owing to a back injury sustained by Fury. 'He is a very difficult opponent,' Barry said. 'He is an opponent a lot of people don't want to fight. We sat down as a team and said to Joe, 'Do you want to fight Hughie Fury?' And he said, 'I want to fight the best fight there is for me in the UK at the moment.' 'We have planned on coming here for the past 12-to-18 months. We think Hughie brings the biggest challenge to us.' The build-up has been light on trash talk, with Parker living up to his image of being clean-cut and courteous. 'I know it's the wrong sport for a good guy, but everyone is his friend,' Parker's mother, Sala, told The Associated Press. 'Joe has no enemy in the entire world. His opponents are his best friends.' Still, Parker said there were doubts over Fury's power and his chin, and he felt he saw 'fear in his eyes' as they went face to face for the cameras. 'He took a big gulp,' Parker said. 'I thought, 'He's scared.'' br />   .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 21st, 2017

Fil-Canadian ‘brings back’ native martial art to PH

  To most immigrant Filipinos in North America, going home "for good" to the Philippines may not be on top of the agenda. Career, family, culture and political stability are just a few of the considerations one has to make before making the big move.Roland Isla, a Filipino Canadian, did make the biggest decision in his life -- moving back to the Philippines. He left his lucrative job as a quantity surveyor to build a life in the country that his parents had left. Eventually, he established the Isla Kali Mandirigma Martial Art School in Manila. "I felt a sense of affinity that made me believe that I belong here not in Canada. Completely irrational (to some). I moved to t...Keep on reading: Fil-Canadian ‘brings back’ native martial art to PH.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated News21 hr. 47 min. ago

I would rather die than lose in the Philippines - Brandon Vera

The biggest question heading into Friday's ONE: Conquest of Champions card in Manila is the condition of reigning ONE Heavyweight World Champion Brandon "The Truth" Vera.  No, Vera isn't ill or injured, but rather he's been out of action nearly the last two years.  Following his dominant title defense over Hideki Sekine in Manila back in 2016, Vera took care of some commitments outside the cage.  Now, Vera is back to defend his title against Italian heavyweight contender Mauro "The Hammer" Cerilli.  Throughout the official ONE: Conquest of Champions press conference, ring rust was one of the concerns that kept attaching itself to Vera, and the reigning champ finally responded to the issue.  "Hindi naman kinakalawang talaga ang tao eh, diba?" said the champion as he was greeted with cheers from the pro-Filipino crowd present at the press conference."  Rather than ring rust, Vera admits that he's a bit nervous for his upcoming bout given that he's been gone for a bit.  "Meron akong kaba, kalawang wala. Kung meron man, pag-tinamaan na ako ni Cerilli, mawawala yun," Vera stated.  Undefeated in his ONE Championship run, with all of his fights happening in the Philippines, the Filipino-American heavyweight star, who has been living in Manila since 2016, promises another victory on home soil.  "I would rather die, than lose in the Philippines," he confidently claimed. "There's no way."    Brandon Vera defends his ONE Heavyweight Wolrd Championship against Mauro Cerilli at ONE: Conquest of Champions this Friday, November 23rd at the Mall of Asia Arena in Manila. Catch the action LIVE on ABS-CBN S+A channel 23 beginning at 8:30 PM!.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 20th, 2018

Obviously, I’m very blessed : Nets LeVert discusses injury

By Tim Reynolds, Associated Press Brooklyn forward Caris LeVert felt the pain in his right foot, and thought it was just a sprain. That is, until he looked down. A week removed from dislocating his right foot — a grotesque injury that looked so much worse than what it actually was — LeVert spoke out Monday (Tuesday, PHL time) about what happened and his plans for the future. "The pain level felt like a regular sprain and I knew I kind of fell on the side of my ankle," LeVert said, talking to reporters at the Nets' facility in Brooklyn, New York. "And obviously when I looked at it, I was like, 'Wow, that's messed up.'" Somehow, the worst was over within a few minutes of him getting hurt on Nov. 12 (Nov. 13, PHL time) at Minnesota. After he was wheeled off the court and taken to the back of the arena, medical staff popped his foot back into place — the most painful part of the whole experience, LeVert said. He was taken to a hospital for further tests that night, learned there was no other major damage, and he wound up flying home with the Nets that night. "Obviously, I'm very blessed, because it could have been a lot worse," LeVert said. LeVert was having a breakout season for Brooklyn, with seven 20-point games already — matching the total from his first two full seasons in the NBA. He was averaging 18.4 points per game, which leads the Nets, and was posting career-best averages in scoring, rebounds and assists, along with a career-high shooting percentage from the floor. There's no timetable for LeVert's return, but the Nets say his coming back at some point this season is the expectation. "Initially, I was frustrated, felt kind of defeated," LeVert said. "I felt like it wasn't fair. But everything happens for a reason. It's not a very, very, very serious injury to the point where the way I play basketball will be different. I feel like I'll still be the same player. I'll be a better player when I come back. I feel like maybe the time off is the best thing for me, maybe best for the team." LeVert said his spirits were boosted by so many fans and players reaching out to him on social media. He said some players also got his phone number and sent texts, though he isn't sure how some of them got the number. "It's been great," LeVert said. "It's been overwhelming, for sure." Brooklyn visits Miami on Tuesday (Wednesday, PHL time)......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 20th, 2018