During his sixth appearance on the “Jimmy Kimmel Live” show on Thursday night, WBO welterweight beltholder Manny Pacquiao addressed changes in his lifestyle such as his no longer gambling and womanizing, the flap over his faith-based comments concerning his stance against same-sex marriage, and, of course, the ongoing topic of whether or not a fight with WBC welterweight and junior middleweight titleholder, Floyd Mayweather Jr., will ever come to fruition.
Pacquiao (54-3-2, 38 knockouts) made his comments 16 days prior to the June 9 defense of his belt against unbeaten WBO junior welterweight titleholder Tim Bradley (28-0, 12 KOs), an HBO Pay Per View-televised event slated for the MGM Grand in Las Vegas that was mentioned just briefly on the show.
RingTV.com transcribed some of the conversation between Kimmel and Pacquiao below:
Jimmy Kimmel: It’s great to see you. I know that you’ve made some big changes in your life recently.
Manny Pacquiao: Yes.
JK: You’ve given up drinking…
JK: Gambling. Smoking…
MP: No, I didn’t smoke.
JK: You didn’t smoke.
JK: Girls? You’ve given up girls? What happened? That’s going too far. Cock fighting, I heard you’ve given up?
MP: After the gambling, I gave that up.
JK: When you give up cock fighting, that’s when you know you’re serious. What happened? Why did this happen?
MP: Because I’m reading the bible, and I found out how to obey and to follow the commandments of God.
JK: Wow, so you’re serious.
When Pacquiao indicated that his entourage members have to give up those same vices because “they’ve found eternal life,” Kimmel retorted, “yeah, you told them, ‘you had better find eternal life, or you’re going to find eternal unemployment.’”
Pacquiao also briefly addressed the recent controversy over his statements about gay marriage.
JK: I saw on the internet that somebody said that you condemned homosexuals and everyone got mad at you, but it turned out that you didn’t say that.
MP: No, someboby’s…one reporter is asking about what my stand is, and what my comment is about the legalizing of the same sex marriage, and I told him that ‘no, I’m against allowing people in the same sex marriage.’ But I’m not saying that I’m condeming the gays.
JK: You said that you have family members who are gay, and friends who are gay and whom you love.
JK: So that got blown out of proportion.
In a separate exchange, Kimmel fashioned himself the mediator for a megabout between Pacquiao and Mayweather.
JK: I really feel like if I could get you and Floyd in a room on television, you could each have one representative, and I could make this happen. I really feel like I could be the mediator here. Would you agree to something like that?
MP: Yes, there is no problem…
JK: Great. I will be the guy that makes this happen. Floyd, you heard it. I’ll invite both of you to sit down. There will be no drinking or cock fighting but we will hash out an agreement and we will get this fight.
Pacquiao, whose 15-bout winning streak includes eight knockouts, debuted on “Jimmy Kimmel Live” three days after Halloween in November of 2009 prior to dethroning Miguel Cotto as WBO beltholder by 12th-round knockout later that month, and .
Pacquiao was also on the show before his unanimous decision welterweight defense against Joshua Clottey in March of 2010, as well as before earning the WBC’s since-vacated junior middleweight belt with a unanimous decision over Antonio Margarito in November of 2010.
Pacquiao was on Kimmel’s show for the fourth time prior to the unanimous decision defense of his crown in May of last year over Shane Mosley, and made his fifth appearance nine days prior to scoring the disputed majority decision over Juan Manuel Marquez in November.
Photo by Chris Farina, Top Rank
Lem Satterfield can be reached at email@example.com