Home News Boxing Manny Pacquiao’s Basketball Tryouts May Help with ‘Shifting’ in the Ring

Manny Pacquiao’s Basketball Tryouts May Help with ‘Shifting’ in the Ring

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(Boxing icon Pacquiao plays professional basketball, photo: EPA/DENNIS M. SABANGAN)

There are athletes who are only good at what they do and others who could go pro in a multitude of sports. What is common are the seemingly un-athletic Tom Brady’s or Tim Duncan’s of the world who dominate their own sport. What is uncommon are the atheletes who show a wide array of talents.

In the 1979 MLB Draft, John Elway and Dan Marino were selected by the Kansas City Royals. Elway was a dual threat QB with an uncanny ability to be able to evade tackles as well as throw with accuracy while Marino was drafted straight out of high school, but decided to play College Football instead.

Bo Jackson had short but dominant careers in the NFL and MLB as a running back and outfielder, respectfully. He is the only athlete to be named an All-Star in two major American sports.

Deon Sanders played in the NFL and MLB and is the only player to ever hit an MLB home run and score an NFL touchdown in the same week. In addition, Sanders is the only man to play in both a Super Bowl and a World Series.

Basketball players like Michael Jordan and LeBron James have shown their athletism in other sports as well. Jordan played for Minor League Baseball and LeBron had fun in football pads at his alma mater St. Vincent-St. Mary High School, looking like he could be a legitimate tight end in the NFL with his 6’8, 250 pound frame.

In basketball and especially with point guards like Manny Pacquiao, they spend a lot of time crouched over and shifting positions as they weave their way through traffic on the court. Players like Derrick Rose and Allen Iverson are great examples of players who shift direction effortlessy based on what their opponents give them. Another master of this craft was Tim “Killer Crossover” Hardaway. Manny Pacquiao was not as efficient as the athletes mentioned above, but simply playing another sport and working out new muscles could make him even more agile. Middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin looks like he would make a great basketball player because of his ability to shift in the ring.

Earlier this month, Manny Pacquiao made his professional basketball debut for the KIA Sorrentos playing in the freshly organized Philippine Basketball Association. He started the game, but only wound up playing for around 10 minutes, scoring 1 point and producing 2 turnovers during his team’s 80-66 win over the Blackwater Elite at the Philippine Arena. Despite the stats, this could bode well for Pacquiao as he is set to defend his WBO welterweight crown against Chris Algieri because his body won’t know that he had a bad game. The act of simply dribbling the ball around and breaking a sweat could add some new maneuvers to his already vicious arsenal.