All I Want for Christmas No. 2: Manny, One for the Show…
The last Marquez bout will probably be Fight of the Year so why not do it again? Besides the story-line going into number five will be huge…
Lyford Cay, Bahamas
Well, Santa, I probably should not get greedy and maybe shouldn’t have any list this year. But according to the character Gordon Gekko greed is good and it sure does not look like it has hurt too many folks here in Lyford Cay. Apparently the phrase “Money can’t buy you happiness” was a proverb first introduced in 1792 in the William & Mary College Quarterly. What a crock of Schmidt, sorry Santa, or as Dear Old Pops would say, “Maybe, but it sure the fuck doesn’t hurt.” (Sorry again Santa, but I am trying to keep the quotes accurate.) The diving is great, sunset’s spectacular, and food wonderful. The muscle car I get to drive around this weekend isn’t bad either. I am sorry, just as I was last year (see All I Want for Christmas…Floyd, Tattoos, Manny), but my list may not be politically correct and I suppose I could call it my Holiday list but it has always been my Christmas list and besides Santa this is Boxing so we do not have to worry about political correctness.
Well Santa, I am not going to get, AGAIN, my big gift of Manny vs. Money, but where there is a will, or in this case Bob Arum, there is a way. If Roberto Duran could be resurrected, as he was, from that potato sack-like drop to the canvas floor courtesy of The Hitman then certainly Manny can come back as his is much, much the less fall from boxing grace as he lay on his face. He got caught Santa and that’s boxing. He also caught his toe just before he got hit and that was a real mistletoe Santa. Manny showed his desire and his fire (see Manny Pacquiao: No Fire, Retire) and contrary to the “Negative Nancys,” as son Jordan would call them, it was probably Fight of the Year, this battle with JMM. Manny seemed like his good old self looking to knock somebody’s head off. Give me number Five, please Santa. I am kind of thinking of the old Trooper song here: One for the money, Two for the show, Three for the lady on the radio, four might be the one. You’ll never know, you’ll never know. If only there was a better way to go.”
ONE FOR THE MONEY—Well Santa extra dough is always a good thing and If Manny does not want or need it well there are all kinds of projects over in the Philippines that it can be used for. I am also thinking Money as in Mayweather. If Manny shows big in number five then Money is back on the table and Bob Arum, if all the elves work together, will be your boxing version of Christmas, Santa.
TWO FOR THE SHOW—The last Marquez bout will probably be Fight of the Year so why not do it again? Besides the story-line going into number five will be huge. Manny’s attempt at redemption…Manny’s last stand…la dee da da Santa. It sure beats watching Manny doing a duet with Dan Hill. Besides I always like duets such as a Tom Jones and Tina Turner better.
THREE FOR THE LADY ON THE RADIO—Well Santa apparently Manny’s Mom and wife want Manny to hang them up. If they have any understanding of a fighter’s ego and psyche they will allow him one last blast by way of number five. Besides, Manny can say he did it “My Way” Frank Sinatra-style in Sinatra town.
FOUR MIGHT BE THE ONE, YOU’LL NEVER KNOW. Santa the options out there realistically don’t make any sense for Manny other than number five. Immediate redemption for a sleigh full of dough is the name of the game and although a Desert Storm or a Bam Bam would be fun they do not sound very much like Christmas and are both dangerous fights. Why not head straight to the Promised Land? Throw the dice and make the Steve Wynns of the world happy!!!!!
IF ONLY THERE WAS A BETTER WAY TO GO—For first ballot Hall-of-Famer to be and legend Manny going out on a loss just does not seem right Santa. Even more so given the level Manny is still at. Besides there is no worry of the “O” that might go. Heck Santa, these two warriors can only grow their mutual legends bigger by having the cojones, err sorry Santa, to jump in the ring again. There are so many fighters out there right now that don’t want to step up and take the tough fights—you know the types Santa—the ones that refuse to participate in reindeer games.
Dear Santa, I am going to skip a few weights this year but here is the rest of my list:
HEAVY: Fury vs. Price would be nice and Wilder Thing moving up the line would be fine. Besides Santa Fury is worth all the Christmas gifts you could have by all those sound bites he provides. Just look at his press conference with Kingpin Johnson Santa. “Hello Mr. Sunglasses, Hello Mr. Chubby Checker…Lift up your shirt, would you look at that…”
LIGHT HEAVY: Well Santa, All The King’s One Man—Cloud I see is slated in to fight Hopkins—thank you for the early gift Golden Boy. Santa can you also see fit to get my friend WBA Champion Beibut Shumenov in the Ring with that undefeated Englishman, Cleverly. No offense Santa, but winter in the City of Neon has to be better than winter in England.
MIDDLE: Sergio rematch with Jr.—that last round was fabulous Santa and maybe Sergio vs. Golovkin. Also Santa if you could get Pirog back in action.
JR. MIDDLE: Santa, Champion Canelo has called out Champion Money and both would get huge green stuff—a Champion Money.
JR. WELTER: Bam Bam Rios vs. ANYBODY. But really, Santa, how about Bam Bam vs. Tim Bradley at a catchweight setting up the winner of Number Five? There’s also Khan vs. Garcia II. The first one was a firefight with Khan in control early. With Khan and Hunter having more time moving into the New Year to mesh number two should be great fun. Besides, Santa, I don’t see Virgil putting up with Papa Garcia’s pre-fight psychological warfare antics. And what about Paul Spadafora? I know what you are thinking—has Paul been a bad boy this year? Well Santa I am not inviting Paul over for the family barbecue any more than I would invite Mike Tyson who might take an ear rather than the T-Bone—besides, having Bronson the Coyote/Shepherd dog around while there is a barbecue is dangerous to one’s health, Paul and Iron Mike included. But this is boxing and former Lightweight World Champion Pittsburgh Kid Spadafora is undefeated close to fifty fights and is on the comeback trail. As Father Murphy would say, “There is no such thing as a bad boy” (I often wondered if the good Father got out of the rectory very often), so how about giving Paul a shot. I think he is a real boxing problem for most the top ten and not too many guys want to step up.
LIGHTWEIGHT: Santa if I had 100 Cent for every 50 Cent that somebody said they wanted to make the best fight I would have a whole lot of cents…make the fight—Adrian “Can’t Seem to Keep My Hair Nice” Broner vs. Gamboa. 50 can get it done and probably go 100 cent on the dollar.
FEATHERWEIGHT: Well Santa, last year I asked for MIKEY GARCIA MIKEY GARCIA MIKEY GARCIA. Some people probably think Bob Arum is the Grinch but I still say he reminds me of Dear Old Pops less lots of swearing (maybe). Santa Bob has already let me open one of my Christmas goodies—Mikey and Salido at the Garden. Nothing like the Big Apple Santa—YIPPEEE SANTA. I think I am slotted to enjoy ringside!!!
LITTLE MEN BEYOND: Well, Santa, give me more of my Fighter of the Year vote, “The Filipino Flash,” Nonito Donaire along with a guy that should have been Trainer of the Year last year and should be this year—Robert Garcia. Hey maybe Flash can fight the other Cuban. He will get Mares sometime and I won’t ask for it now Santa, but I would sure like to see more of Mares as well. Hey, how about Mares vs. Santa, Santa? Cruz on up! My Pinoy friends no doubt will irritate the hell out of me Santa (sorry Santa) about not mentioning “who I like” in Donaire vs. Mares. I think Mares will charge his sleigh hard at Donaire and end up with a nose like Rudolph’s, Santa—Donaire by mid-round knockout. Mares is a come-forward guy Santa and—and he can’t help himself so why change since he has been helping himself just fine doing just that.
Ah, Santa, one last thing. James Kirkland, kinda like Mike Jones, seems to be stuck somewhere down in the South Pole. Santa, although the grass always seems greener, I don’t think there is any green down there. Can we get them midpoint, at least, to the North Pole and see them back in action?
Thank you Santa and Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, Happy New Year, and to all a good night!!!!