“Hindi na (No more),” Pacquiao said yesterday when asked about a possible comeback before the year comes to a close, some eight weeks after Floyd Mayweather beat him during their super fight in the US.
Mayweather won on a unanimous decision to raise his unbeaten record to 48-0 but Pacquiao would later confess that he reinjured his right shoulder during the 12-rounder at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, preventing him from doing what he does best.
Four days after the fight, doctors in Los Angeles performed an operation on the torn rotator cuff and Pacquiao was told that he will likely be resting the rest of the year to allow the injury to fully heal.
Pacquiao was in an animated mood as he was getting ready to help in the coaching chores of the Kia Carnival, who were slated to see action in the first game at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Pacquiao, 35, has been visibly absent for a long time on the Kia bench, opting to spend more time with his constituents in Sarangani and hometown of General Santos City, and his presence at the dressing room was a reason for the entire team to be in a jolly mood.
“Bibigyan ko ng energy ang mga players ko,” he said on the phone with voices of various individuals on the background, a sign that something was up over at the Kia camp.
Although the sling supporting his right shoulder has long been removed, Pacquiao said he has been advised to be extra-cautious with his moves.
“Kahit na tinanggal na yung sling at maganda na ang pakiramdam ko, hindi ko pa rin pwedeng itaas ang kamay at braso ko. Hanggang paturo-turo lang at laro lang ng chess,” said Pacquiao, whose ring return won’t happen until April or May of 2016.
Even Bob Arum, the Hall of Fame promoter and head of Top Rank, said the immediate concern is the full rehabilitation of Pacquiao’s shoulder.
“I have been talking witn his doctor,” said Arum, who remains deeply involved in resuscitating Pacquiao’s career.
There is talk that Pacquiao’s much-awaited return might be against Floyd Mayweather, who is booked to see action on Sept. 12 against a foe yet to be named. (Nick Giongco)