By John F. McKenna (McJack)
WBO welterweight champion Manny Pacquiao (53-3-2, 38 KO’s) who faces WBO/WBA lightweight champion Juan Manuel Marquez (53-5-1, 39 KO’s) tonight in Las Vegas is demonstrating once again that his scope goes far beyond boxing and that he is a worldwide economic force to be reckoned with.
In an article in the prestigious New York Times, Top Rank Promotions president Todd Du Boef speaking of Pacquiao’s economic impact on Las Vegas was quoted saying:
“It’s way more. Not $100 million. It’s hundreds of millions.”
The New York Times article went on to say that the Pacquiao – Marquez event may earn the Nevada State Athletic Commission its operating budget for the year, adding that the increase in hotel patronage increases the rates that hotels and nightclubs charge for their services.
According to the New York Times article Pacquiao in his humility, seems oblivious to the economic impact he has on the economy of Las Vegas, stating “I’m just here to fight.”
“Pacman” 1st achieved superstar status when he defeated Miguel Cotto via 12th round stoppage in November 2009, earning his 7th title in 7 weight classes.
Every time Manny fights in Las Vegas he brings a loyal fan base with him, which includes high end Asian gamblers. It is thought that the high rollers who have attended Pacquiao’s fights have aided significantly in the ongoing economic recovery of Las Vegas.
Du Boef said that Top Rank saw this coming when they originally signed Pacquiao hoping to capitalize on the Asian market by bringing in a future Asian superstar. Apparently Pacquiao’s status as an international superstar has exceeded even Top Rank Promotions wildest dreams.
Part of what makes Manny Pacquiao such a huge draw to many boxing fans is that he is humble. “Pacman” never talks trash and never talks smack as is the custom of so many fighters today. More importantly Manny never allows himself to be drawn into making disparaging remarks about his opponents. Pacquiao is a refreshing change from what we as boxing fans have become accustomed to.
Manny is generally acknowledged by boxing fans to be the best Pound for Pound fighter in the world after winning championships in 8 weight divisions and doing it in impressive fashion. But more than that Manny has transcended the sport of boxing. No other fighter generates the world wide popularity that Manny does.
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