Manny Pacquiao made headlines a few months ago when he was asked how he planned to prepare for his upcoming fight against Brandon Rios. Typically, guys who are coming off consecutive losses change things up a bit. Sometimes they bring in a new coach. Other times they start training camp a bit earlier, just to work out whatever kinks led to their prior few defeats.
As has often been the case throughout his career, Pacquiao resisted conventional wisdom. Rather than doing anything special for his November showdown, the Filipino star explained that his goal was to treat this bout like any other. He wouldn’t train harder for it. He wouldn’t start training camp earlier for it. As far as he was concerned, it would just be business as usual.
When pressed on how specifically he planned to train for this match-up, Pacquiao cited one of his favorite pastimes: basketball. He always relied on hoops to stay in shape, the former eight division champ insisted, and he’d stick to that formula on this go-round.
Late last week, news leaked that Pacquiao injured himself playing basketball. Because he is reluctant to apply tape to his ankles before playing, the Filipino star is apparently very susceptible to hurting himself on the basketball court. While that’s generally not a huge a problem three months out from a perspective match, it complicates matters a tad bit when said match is the biggest of your career. More specifically, when it’s one that, per your own team, will determine whether you retire or keep on keepin’ on.
Will there be any real ramifications from this injury? Who knows. Either way, though, hearing that Pacquiao hurt himself while doing something as stupid as playing basketball will only give Rios more confidence heading into their fight.