MANILA -- Jerwin Ancajas had a breakout year in 2017, making three successful IBF junior bantamweight title defenses -- all of them by stoppages.
But boxing analyst Ed Tolentino believes that for Ancajas to become a real boxing star, the Panabo City-born boxer would need to follow the blueprint used by the superstar who came before him: Manny Pacquiao.
“(Manny Pacquiao) was a nobody, then he started knocking everybody out,” Tolentino said on DZMM’s Fastbreak over the weekend.
“Nakita lang siya sa mga undercard nina Tyson-Lewis, nakita nila 'this guy is knocking out everybody.' Then all of a sudden Marco Antonio Barrera na ang kalaban niya.”
Ancajas, according to the analyst, may have an easier time than Pacquiao because of social media, which has become a perfect tool to create a brand nowadays.
“It's important because it translates to pay-per-view sales, to ticket sales. Diyan nagsisimula ‘yan,” explained Tolentino. “’Pag nakikilala ka na, bigla silang pupunta sa venue. ‘Pag nakita nila sa YouTube ito, 'Ang galing ah,' saka sila pupunta sa venue. That's how you create the hysteria. Create the atmosphere, they will come.
“'Pag nagawa ito ni Ancajas, nagtuloy-tuloy ang progress, there's no reason why people won't show up and buy tickets.”
Tolentino added that what makes Ancajas so special is the set of tools he has at this stage of his career.
“May talento. He works behind the jab, he throws a lot of body punches. Sabi ko nga thinking boxer itong si Jerwin Ancajas. At hindi siya takot lumaban kahit saan,” he said.
Ancajas was so impressive in 2017 that Bob Arum of Top Rank Inc. has decided to sign him to a three-fight contract that could extend to six fights.
“Pretty Boy” is set to make his US debut on February 3 against Mexico’s Israel Gonzalez.
If Ancajas keeps on winning impressively, Tolentino said the Filipino champ will see a major upgrade in his fight purses.
“Usually may base starting salary 'yan e. Start of a six-fight contract 'yan e. You have to win para magkaroon ng upgrade. Pero ito ang highest purse ni Ancajas. Malaking pera na 'yun. ‘Pag nakita ni Arum na maganda ang kanyang performance second, third, fourth til sixth, may insentibo yan,” Tolentino pointed out.
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