Nietes and company all set for Philippines vs. The World

CARSON, Calif. – After weeks of training and anticipation, the Filipino boxers finally came face to face with their opponents at the official “Philippines vs. The World” press conference.

The ALA fighters, composed of Donnie Nietes, Jason and Prince Pagara, and Mark Magsayo, came in high spirits and traded a few light verbal jabs with their Latino opponents, all of them guaranteeing a good fight on Saturday.

“Let’s see what he does. There will be a knock out,” said Magsayo.

“’Yan ang maganda… gusto ko ng knockout,” said Pagara.

While ALA Promotions has been home to some of the Philippines’ top boxers for nearly 30 years, they have yet to stage a fight in the US.

Their main draw Nietes, who has been a champion for eight years, has yet to fight stateside.

For ALA’s head honcho, it was all about timing not only for Filipino fighters but also for smaller weight classes.

Throughout the US’ boxing history, the sport has tended to gravitate more towards heavyweights until a Filipino fighter helped change that perspective.

“We had to face it that the lower weight divisions has never been recognized in America and what legitimized it was the performances by Pacquiao,” said ALA president Michael Aldeguer. “This is something we’ve always envisioned the past years.”

October 17 will be a big day not only for Filipino fighters, but also for flyweights. Across the country, the reigning pound-for-pound king Roman “Chocalatito” Gonzalez is taking on Fil-Am, two-time division champion Brian Viloria in New York.

With a flyweight as the reigning top fighter, Aldeguer welcomes the New York fight and is already in talks of putting Nietes up against Chocolatito.

“This is very exciting because we are starting to discuss with K2 promotions the promoter of Roman Gonzalez a fight with Donnie on HBO so this it…. it’s just now that they’re looking at the lower divisions,” said Aldeguer.

But Nietes’ Mexican foe, Juan “Pinky” Alejo, also eyes the winner of the Gonzalez-Viloria bout.

With ALA’s partnership with ABS-CBN and The Filipino Channel, the promotion is already eyeing more US-based fights in the near future, hoping to showcase the Philippines most talented fighters in boxing’s biggest stage.

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