By Michael Marley
If Manny Pacquiao, a decided underdog according to the bookmakers, can come up with a fight strategy as clever as his plan to get Floyd Mayweather Jr. to sign the bout contract, then chances are the Pinoy Idol will shock the world in this so called super bout.
Clever is as clever does and the Pacquiao camp has a wicked 1-2 punch going this weekend, coincidentally as Pacquiao celebrated his 33rd birthday in Gensan.
On Friday, a bubbling and discernibly optimistic Pacman promoter Bob Arum informed me there are "no barriers" to making the mega-match in 2012. In fact, the octogenarian said he is "convinced" Floyd really wants to fight Manny next and vice versa. Because of that mutual desire, the promoter said a deal "could come together fast."
But it took Pacquiao, speaking on his natal day, to drop the body blow.
Wisely, and showing maturity beyond his age, Pacquiao sublimated his smaller ego to that of the undefeated fighter who refers to himself as "Money."
Speaking to veteran journo Nick Giongco of the Manila Bulletin, he made a statement in Tagalog which was, in sum and substance: "I will take less money than Mayweather gets because the important thing is making the fight happen."
I had written sometime ago that, to make the fight happen, Pacquiao should concede all the "vanity issues" - pertaining to whose name goes first on promotional materials, who weighs in first and who enters the ring first.
It would be incredibly stupid for a possible $100 million fight, richest in history, to stumble over such egocentric considerations.
But I must admit, knowing that Pacquiao's ego is not a tiny one either, that I never believed he would drop his constant demands for an even steven, 50-50 down the line financial split.
I'm still reeling. It is Pacman's birthday and he gave the gift to Mayweather.