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Pacquiao gets new cutman

By Nick Giongco

Manny Pacquiao is tapping the expertise of Los Angeles-based orthodontist Ed Dela Vega as his cutman when the Filipino legend battles Argentine champion Lucas Matthysse for the World Boxing Association (WBA) welterweight crown on July 15 in Malaysia.

Dela Vega, a long-time US resident, has also the provided Pacquiao’s customized mouthguard the last 13 years.
But the Matthysse fight, set at the 15,000-capacity Axiata Arena in Kuala Lumpur, will mark the first time that Dela Vega will also wear a different hat.

Through the years, however, Dela vega had customized the mouthguards of Filipino fighters who wound up seeing action in the US. The fighters of ALA Boxing of Cebu are his loyal customers.

But instead of billing them, Dela Vega offered his mouthpieces for free.

In fact, in his previous dealings with Pacquiao, all Dela Vega got was a nod of approval from the eight-division champion and it was more than enough given the lofty status of his client.

For Dela Vega, it was his way of helping Filipino fighters fulfill their dreams on American soil.

Next month, Dela Vega will be right up there with Pacquiao in his biggest stint as cutman but is kind of reluctant to share the spotlight.

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