I still can't believe what Manny had just done! Most boxing experts predicted that dela Hoya would knock out Pacquiao and that Pacquiao will not stand a chance. I'm shocked, the world is shocked! He just raised himself to another level.
I have to admit that I was literally shaking and feeling cold before the fight. My heart was pounding hard when both fighters were entering the ring. I had a great view right at the center of the arena with my two friends. We really felt the pressure of the match and we even said a prayer all together right before the match began.
After the first two rounds, I already felt that Manny was in control and that it was just a matter of time when he would knock out Dela Hoya. He just had to be careful with Dela Hoya's quick power left hooks. His maturity was evident as he was cautious throughout the fight, but still remaining aggressive. Every time Pacman threw a series of punches that threw Dela Hoya off balance, I would get off my seat and start throwing punches in the air as well.
After the referee stopped the fight after the 8th round, i raised my arms and got goose bumps. What a great feeling! Filipinos in the Grand Arena in MGM Grand were giving high fives to each other, hugging and rejoicing out loud! The match was clearly one-sided. Dela Hoya just didn't have the legs and the endurance to keep up with Manny's speed and power. Sadly, some Mexicans and Americans were booing dela Hoya for a poor fight. He was gracious in defeat though.
It's a great feeling for all Filipinos! I just feel so proud to be a Filipino, and moreover, Manny's co-host. I was lucky enough to have dinner with him in his suite the night before the fight. Actually I was still stuffed from a heavy merienda, but of course i didn't want to pass up the chance to eat with Manny in his Mandalay Bay (The Hotel) suite before the fight after he invited me. At least this time it's not in the Pinoy Records studio. So i ate his tinolang manok, fried fish, pork and beef. He even invited me to watch the Celtics vs Lakers game this December 25 in the Staples Center with him and his family since he bought box seat tickets. Too bad I won't be in the states at that time . The whole time he was so relaxed and cheerful as if there was no fight the following day. He was very confident that he would win because he told me to join him in his convoy going back to L.A. because it will be very very fun in the bus. I'm still thinking whether i should join them or not because i also want to stop by an outlet mall on the way back to L.A. Manny's really such a funny guy, i wish i can tell you more but i have to go.
We didn't join the after-party anymore in Rumjungle in Mandalay Bay since it was just sooo packed!! Instead, we went to Manny's room and luckily, bumped into Manny without having to brave the crowd. Again, lucky Chris gets to hug and congratulate his idol right before he went into his bedroom and locked it :)
It's 4am now and i think i have to sleep so i can attend the mass at 10am . So please pardon my very messy and incoherent entry. My mind isn't really functioning anymore. I'll update when i have more time :)
some other personality i saw in the match: Reggie Miller, Charles Barkley, Usher, Mike Tyson, and the Golden Boy boxers,(they announced that the following were in the arena as well although i didn't see them: JLo, Marc Anthony, Eva Longoria, George Lucas, Russel Crowe, Magic Johnson, and others) Of course lots of Filipino celebrities and politicians too :)
Congratulations Manny! Congratulations to all Filipinos! Mabuhay! :)