Manny Pacquiao is Awesome at Basketball…
To say otherwise is to admit you don’t value your career as a pro basketball player. And if you don’t believe me, ask Daniel Orton. He’s a former University of Kentucky Wildcat and Orlando Magic first round draft pick who is currently
a member of the Purefoods Hotshots looking for work after being kicked out of the Philippines Basketball Association.
After a recent PBA game between his club and a Kia All-Stars team that included boxing star and national hero Manny Pacquiao, Orton said something less than flattering about Pac Man.
“Professional boxer, yeah, okay… professional basketball player, no,” Orton told reporters after the game. “It’s a joke.”
So harsh. Defamation suit pending.
Well, the joke’s on you, Orton.
The league terminated his contract and fined him a pile of pesos — 250,000 according to the Yahoo report. It translates to about $5650 U.S. While I don’t know if that’s big money to a PBA player, a 2013 Manila Times column titled “PBA Salaries No Longer Enviable” tells me guys like Orton can use every peso.
“This office disapproves of and frowns upon the cavalier manner in which Mr Orton issued his comments and the unwarranted antics and liberties he has taken with the league and a fellow player,” PBA commissioner Chito Salud said in a statement published on Yahoo Sports.
“This insulting behaviour will never be condoned by this league.”
If you gave Orton a do-over I bet he’d Marshawn Lynch every question about Pacquiao’s basketball prowess.
“I’m just saying he’s a good player so I don’t get fined….”
Anyway, it’s a touch vindictive — and probably illegal in many jurisdictions — to fine a guy you just fired, especially when he’s guilty only of expressing the only conclusion the facts support.
Pacquiao scored one point in the game in question. Haven’t seen a boxscore, nor the advanced analytics on his performance that night, so it’s possible Pac played phenomenally in ways traditional stats can’t measure. Maybe he’s the PBA’s Shane Battier. It’s also possible that single point represents Peak Basketball Pacquiao.
Manny Pacquaio shoots like this:
That’s not textbook shooting form, or even notebook shooting form. He’d have to clean it up to qualify it as scrapbook shooting form. As our man @stephen_Lebron points out, Pac’s “jumper” is to shooting what Charles Barkley’s golf swing is to long drives.
when u kno that’s a messed up form pic.twitter.com/SuBSoIhGEg
— alex (@steven_lebron) February 24, 2015
Pacquiao’s still working on it, though, and he’ll have at least one more opportunity to show off that shooting stroke before he faces Floyd Mayweather in the biggest boxing match since forever. According to Yahoo’s report, the Kia All-Stars have a game scheduled for next week and Pacquiao is slated to play. Brings to mind something I tweeted in the moments after I learned the superfight had been finalized:
I’m not a gambling man but if I was… Pacquaio.
I’ll bet on him to score a career high next week, too. Because Manny Pacquiao is Awesome at Basketball, and I don’t want to get fired for saying he’s not.
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