by Nick Giongco
LOS ANGELES — Manny Pacquiao wanted to jump rope on Friday afternoon but lead trainer Buboy Fernandez politely declined.
Pacquiao tried his luck with conditioning coach Justin Fortune and was given the same dry answer.
With a little over a week before facing Adrien Broner in Las Vegas, Pacquiao still appeared as though he hadn’t done enough to prime himself.
“One more, one more,” Pacquiao said, sounding like a kid begging for the clown to perform another playful trick.
“We’re done with heavy training,” said Fortune, who believes the 40-year-old Filipino southpaw has reached his peak and that the remaining training days will be solely devoted to maintain his condition.
“We’ve sparred over 100 rounds and that’s it,” said Fortune, a former powerlifter and heavyweight fighter who once battled Lennox Lewis.
Pacquiao had racked up six rounds of heavy pounding on the mitts and shadowboxed as well but still craved for more.
“Whenever there’s a lot of people watching him train, he tends to show off a bit,” said Fortune.
Indeed, quite a number of mediamen were allowed to witness the tail-end of his training session.
Aside from those assigned to the Pacquiao beat, there were several non-boxing individuals who gained access to the first floor of the Wild Card Boxing Club.
US boxing man Sean Gibbons, a member of Pacquiao’s inner circle, brought members of the Los Angeles Fire Department “because they had to put out the fire inside the gym.”
Pacquiao was so blazingly intense on this cold day that Gibbons stressed that the gym was on fire.