Manny Pacquiao: A Champ Regardless of Name

ABS-CBN Sports on Apr 14, 2015 05:03 PM
Manny Pacquiao: A Champ Regardless of Name
Photo credit: Chris Farina

A wise man once said that a name is power in its own being. That the fear of the name increases the fear of the man itself.

His full name is Emmanuel Dapidran Pacquiao and he may be more popular known as Manny Pacquiao, but the eight division champion is also known by several other names or monickers.

Anyway, here are eight nicknames that Manny Pacquiao had along the years.

1) The People's Champ

Whenever Manny Pacquiao steps inside the boxing ring, he bears on his shoulders the entire  nation of the Philippines. Every single Filipino from all walks of life is represented in each one of his bouts.

Similarly, every single title bout won in all of the eight different weight classes is a championship won for every Filipino. And given his growing legion of supporters all around the world, this nickname fits him more appropriately. 

2) The Destroyer

Way back then, before all the glitz, the glamour, the films, the documentaries and thousands of screaming fans outside his gym, Manny Pacquiao was just a scrawny-blond-haired boxer who weighed at around 112 pounds and was more than willing to throw punches until his arms fall off.

One doesn't need to pay 3,000 pesos to watch him fight, all the patrons needed to do was wait until the PBA games ended every Friday and wait for the show "Blow by Blow" to air.

And of all the things that he've been called, he was first known as "The Destroyer."

Why? His no-let up, rag-tag style of boxing literally destroyed the faces of his opponents, endearing him to Filipino fight fans even before he conquered the world and took names of the whos-who of boxing.

3) Pambansang Kamao (The National Fist)

This one's no surprise, given that the Philippines is a country that loves to give out the 'national' tag to almost everything.

They call a local comedian a "pambansang kabayo" (National Horse), they call a move of local professional basketball player the "pambansang reverse" (national reverse lay-up), almost every channel has a "pambansang palatuntunan" (national show) and almost every new love team is a "pambansang tambalan" (national couple).

So it's only logical that the country's most known citizen gets his name up on the 'national' list, right? Meh.

4) The Fighting Pride of the Philippines

This is pretty much like item number two, but with a little more touch of 'class', or so they say.

Because nothing screams "Pinoy Pride" better than when Michael Buffer screams the "Fighting pride of the Philippiiiinesss!" during Pacquiao introductions, right?

The knack on this one is that it may be too long for some people's liking. Why can't it just be "triple P" or "Pinoy Pride Personified," right?

5) The Fighting Congressman

Hey, this one's pretty cool. Save for the fact that this tag is one of the few reminders of Pacquiao's ill-advised decisions, people could live with this kind of nickname.

It's not always a bad thing when athletes do double-duties, like serving the people and the government while being a top notch performer on his or her sport.

Retired NBA player David Robinson was called "the Admiral", mainly because of his service with the US Navy. Mirko Filipovic, known to many as "Cro Cop", was also a politician and got his name for being a Croatian law enforcement officer. Brian Stann was called "All-American" because of his stint with the US Marines.

The Fighting Congressman is a pretty bad-ass name, except for the fact that Manny's venture into Philippine politics will always be a dark spot in his storied career.

6) Ninong Manny (Godfather Manny)

In an international setting, being called "the Godfather" is kind of a big deal. Think Marlon Brando with the flashy suit and the oversized ring on his index finger, with everyone kissing it.

Here in the Philippines, that name pretty much has comic undertones with visuals of Pacquiao throwing away bundles of cash, with matching dancers on the background in a game show.

But that show of generosity isn't isolated on TV shows and news reports. In real life, Manny really emphasizes the importance of giving and reaching out to his less fortunate constituents and team members.

That being said, we'll let this "Ninong" name pass.

7) The Mexicutioner

Throughout his career, Pacquiao has fought 15 Mexicans, and he pretty much had a good time dispatching them.

Pacquiao's overall record against them: 12 wins, two losses (Juan Manuel Marquez and Erik Morales) and a draw (Marquez). That's a pretty good record, and it pretty much supports the nickname 'Mexicutioner' for Pacquiao.

There are just a few athletes who get nicknames based on a number of common opponents that they've gone through. Off the top of my head comes MMA legend Kazushi Sakuraba, who was known as the "Gracie Hunter" for beating so many Gracies.

When an athlete gets a special nickname based on the opponents that he has defeated, then he's a pretty special fighter.

8) Pacman

Simple. Elegant. Not downright scary but definitely packs a punch (no pun intended) with its name recall.

Contrary to popular belief, the name "Pacman" wasn't taken from the 8-bit Namco game with a semi-circle head running around ghosts and eating dots and fruits. It was simply a wordplay from Pacquiao's name. PAC, MAN.

But that's almost irrelevant with fans and even team members of the future Hall-of-Famer already embracing the Pac-man game image and associating it with Manny.

Somebody give the man who coined that nickname a medal! - CJ Jacinto


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