Former WBO welterweight champion, Manny Pacquiao, didn’t appreciate recent comments by the president of the Private Hospitals Association of the Philippines, Dr. Rustico Jimenez, claiming “Pac Man” is showing early signs of Parkinson’s disease.
“There is nothing to be worried about. I am a hundred percent healthy and right now I’m enjoying this memorable vacation with my family in this beautiful country of Israel,” Pacquiao fired back in a statement, per Boxingscene.com. “I will return to the Philippines on January 14 and in early February I want to get to the gym because I want to have a fight in April and in September I want the fifth fight with Marquez. … The statements [made] by the doctors show a total lack of ethics and it was irresponsible. This was just personal opinion and there were no medical tests.”
Rustico — who admitted his observations were based on watching Pacquiao’s behavior during interviews and not an actual medical exam — might even find himself in legal trouble, as Pacquiao’s advisor Michael Koncz talked about possibly filing a civil lawsuit.
“What is the name of this alleged well-known doctor as we are contemplating a civil suit for merit-less and unfounded accusations,” an irritated Koncz said about Jimenez’ statement. “Tell me how can one make such allegations based on mere speculation as I am not aware that this alleged doctor ever examined Manny yet he makes such a diagnosis.”
Pacquiao’s handlers have every reason to be irritated by Jimenez’ proclamation that Manny exhibits early symptoms of Parkinson’s disease, but the reality is, many boxing fans agree with the Filipino doctor’s recommendation that Pacquiao should hang up his gloves.
Manny’s skills have been on the decline since his 2010 fight against Antonio Margarito, and his best days are clearly behind him. His knockout loss to Juan Manuel Marquez on Dec. 8 was as brutal as it gets in boxing, and it doesn’t make any sense for the Filipino Congressman to take further punishment inside the ring.
To make things worse, Pacquiao’s handlers keep talking about a fifth fight against Marquez, which makes it hard to believe they truly have Manny’s best interest at heart. His wife and mother want him to retire, and that seems to be the trend with those who are truly concerned about Pacquiao’s well-being.