FIBA World Cup

Dominican NBA stalwart Karl-Anthony Towns links up with Manny Pacquiao

Delfin Dioquino

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Dominican NBA stalwart Karl-Anthony Towns links up with Manny Pacquiao

BANG. Karl-Anthony Towns in action for Dominican Republic against Italy in the 2023 FIBA World Cup.


As Dominicans enjoy a strong FIBA World Cup start, Karl-Anthony Towns finds time to meet up with Filipino boxing icon Manny Pacquiao

MANILA, Philippines – Karl-Anthony Towns has made the most out of his FIBA World Cup stint.

Playing for Dominican Republic for the first time in a decade, Towns found time to link up with Filipino boxing icon Manny Pacquiao before he steered his country to a remarkable 2-0 start following wins over the Philippines and Italy.

The Minnesota Timberwolves star visited Pacquiao in his Forbes Park home in Makati on the eve of the Dominicans’ 87-82 upset of the Italians on Sunday, August 27, at the Araneta Coliseum.

“It’s fun. It’s great to meet a Filipino legend, boxing legend, sports legend. I’ve known Manny for a while. Being able to see him in the ring personally, being in training camp. It’s really fun to get to catch up,” said the NBA big man.

Towns went with his Filipino friend Chucky Anthony, who also hails from General Santos City like the eight-division world champion.

The two met Pacquiao two years ago in the United States when the retired boxer was training for his welterweight title bout against Yordenis Ugas of Cuba in August 2021.

“We haven’t seen each other in a while,” said Towns.

Towns has been stellar in his first World Cup, averaging 25 points, 10.5 rebounds, and 2.5 assists through two games.

With Towns in tow, Dominican Republic eyes a sweep of Group A against Angola on Tuesday, August 29, as it looks to go deep into the tournament after bowing out in the second round in the past two World Cups. –

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Delfin Dioquino

Delfin Dioquino dreamt of being a PBA player, but he did not have the skills to make it. So he pursued the next best thing to being an athlete – to write about them. He took up journalism at the University of Santo Tomas and joined Rappler as soon as he graduated in 2017.