It seems incredible that despite his stunning loss to Mexican living legend Juan Manuel Marquez last December 8 in Las Vegas, Nevada, eight-division world titlist Manny Pacquiao remains very popular, not just in his native Philippines but the world over.
Less than a week after his loss to Marquez, I posted on Digital Journal an article about his soaring popularity and why fans looked at him as a winner rather that a sore loser.
Here are some observations lifted from the article. To view full article, click here.
Right after his devastating loss to Marquez last Saturday, many of Pacquiao's critics say, giant advertisers like Nike and HP might pull out their ads as a consequence of his loss to Marquez.
These thoughts were even shared by some of Pacquiao's loyal and passionate fans in the Philippines and across the globe.
But judging from the recent turn of events where Pacquiao was even portrayed by many of the local as well as international media as a "winner" despite of his stunning loss, not one of Pacquiao's endorsement clients talked of pulling out their ads or dropping him as an endorser of their products.
This could be due to the fact that Pacquiao took his loss with dignity by admitting he indeed lost as he refrained from putting the blame on someone else.
Pacquiao's persona, as depicted in his spontaneous statements and behavior right after his loss to Marquez, speaks of the outstanding qualities of a good role model, especially for young people who are into sports and related fields.
It must be these attributes that goaded the advertisers who are using Pacquiao for their product endorsements to continue with their cordial relationship with the Filipino boxing star.
But why do boxing fans like or love Pacquiao more than Mayweather?
The answer, it seems, lies in their personalities. Pacquiao is a lovable person while Mayweather thrives on being a sort of a villain in a typical movie.
Fans generally love Mayweather for being a talented, skillful and unbeaten fighter. But some of these fans love to hate Mayweather. They salivate at seeing Mayweather beaten in the ring, not necessarily by Pacquiao, but by any one of his future opponents.
Why is this so? It seems they are not comfortable with how Mayweather projects himself as an ideal role model for the youngsters who emulate his talents in boxing.
For instance, while Pacquiao shares his blessings to the poor and the needy, Mayweather seems to enjoy spending money on entertainment and on other things that he seems to enjoy doing like sports betting and clubbing.
But what fans do not understand is the fact that Mayweather is a very talented marketing man. I honestly believe that he is doing what he does best (entertaining friends, flaunting his wealth, etc) to get public attention and awareness.
By doing so, he gets people to be interested in what he does and ultimately convince them to buy tickets to watch him fight or to see him lose a fight.
For over three years, passionate fans have been unkind with their "below-the-belt" jabs on Mayweather.
Still, Mayweather has kept his emotions under control as he knows that publicity, good or bad, would keep the public talking about him, especially when his fight draws near.
For surviving the harsh words, insults and attacks on his person by misguided fans for years, I salute the unbeaten champion for his exceptional talent inside and outside the ring.