Manny Pacquiao just got drafted by a professional basketball team


Philippine boxing legend Manny Pacquiao practices with the Kia PBA team he’ll reportedly now coach. (Jay Directo/AFP/Getty Images)

Things work differently in the Philippines, at least if you’re world welterweight boxing champion Manny Pacquiao. Not only has his prowess in the ring gained him a seat on the Philippine House of Representatives (he’s in his third term!), but now Pacquiao’s jabbing skills somehow led him to become the top pick in the 2014 Philippine Basketball Association draft, Sports Illustrated reports.

But not just any team went after the pint-sized powerhouse — it was his own team, the Kia Sorentos, whom Paquiao began coaching in June, Bleacher Report writes. It seems team management (um, is that Pacquiao, too?) doesn’t want the five-foot-seven athlete to get scooped up by anyone else…

Not to mention, Pacquiao is already pretty busy. Besides the whole elected-office and coaching a professional basketball team thing, the 35-year-old is also readying himself for his Nov. 23 title defense against undefeated American boxer Chris Algieri. In fact, it was his boxing day job that kept Pacquiao away from attending the PBA draft. He’s currently out promoting the event, reports GMANetwork.com.

And while Pacquiao has yet to react to the good news that he can now coach himself on the Kia team, he has had some words for his upcoming opponent.

“[Algieri] can box. I’m not saying he’s really good but he’s not bad. He’s OK,” Pacquiao said (via GMANetwork.com), assessing Algieri’s skills.

Hopefully the longtime basketball fan will have more definitive words for his PBA team…

Marissa Payne writes for The Early Lead, a fast-breaking sports blog, where she focuses on what she calls the “cultural anthropological” side of sports, aka “mostly the fun stuff.” She is also an avid WWE fan.
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