We all know Manny Pacquiao as a champion boxer — the one and only eight-division world champion at that.

But Manny Pacquiao is also known to be a hardcore basketball fan.

In fact, he was a one-and-done professional player in the Philippine Basketball Association for the team currently known as the Columbian Dyip.

He later founded the Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League, a regional league similar to the National Basketball Association.

But with the MPBL now in its third season, Pacquiao, even if he is elsewhere due to his boxing career or to his duties as a senator, is now well aware of players and even team officials involving in tanking activities.

Recently, he put a crackdown at one entire franchise, and he formalized it on Tuesday.

"The Fighting Senator" filed game-fixing charges on a total of 21 people composed of players, officials, and even strangers who he found out have a significant role in this tanking schemes at the main office of the Philippine justice department in Manila.

Unlike in the NBA where the most probable reason behind the "tankathon" is a better chance at the number one pick of the upcoming draft, which prompted the league to recently tweak its draft lottery rules, the tanking scheme Pacquiao is pertaining to is a different one.

With sports betting becoming more rampant, some bettors tend to ask some players, either direct contact or a common friend of someone else, to at least control their performance or worse, drop the game at all for the bettors to win the bet they placed for the other team.

The bettors will then give the players a "commission" for their "effort".

Considering that the maximum salary for a player in the MPBL, a de facto second-tier league, set at PHP50,000 (around $983) per month, is lower than the minimum salary in the top flight PBA, which is at PHP70,000 (around $1,377) per month, the players, especially the needy ones, tend to accept the bribes from the bettors, who according to Pacquiao goes up to PHP50,000 for that game.

In this case, Pacquiao revealed that a Chinese only known by the name Sung is orchestrating sports betting schemes, leading to the game-fixing trend in the MPBL.

Among the people who were charged with multiple counts of point-shaving and game-fixing include basically an entire team.

Members of the SOCCSKSARGEN Marlins, a team representing provinces in Southern Mindanao, were named into those charged by Pacquiao.

Pacquiao eventually ousted them from the team and rebuilt the squad on his own, keeping five players from its opening night roster.

In a statement, Pacquiao, as per CNN, said in Filipino, "We want to inform everyone that we are serious here in MPBL against any form of game-fixing! We don't fool around here. I love basketball, this is my passion. I formed MPBL for Filipino and we want to give opportunities to those who want to play basketball. I'm mad at those who are cheating in sports that's why we won't stop until the suspects will be put to jail. And to those who are planning to do game-fixing in the MPBL or any sports league, let this be a stern warning to you!"

Manny Pacquiao
Manny Pacquiao en conferencia de Prensa en el Hotel Beverly Hills anunciando su pelea en contra de Timothy Bradley, Jr en April 9, 2016 in Las Vegas. Reuters/Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

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