Mayweather-Pacquiao fight a go | Inquirer Sports

Mayweather-Pacquiao fight a go

Floyd: Let’s do it; Pacquiao: Let’s get it on
/ 01:23 AM December 14, 2014

Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao. FILE PHOTOS

Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao. FILE PHOTOS

Floyd Mayweather Jr. has finally spoken, Manny Pacquiao has quickly responded and the blockbuster fight the world wants to see may finally come into fruition on May 2.

This developed on Saturday following a Mayweather announcement on Showtime Sports on Friday night (Saturday in Manila) that he wanted his next bout to be against the Filipino ring icon provided he would take the bulk of the purse, which is expected to exceed a record $200 million.

Informed of Mayweather’s sudden decision, a chuckling Pacquiao said: “Tama na ang dakdakan (Stop all this talk). Let’s get it on. Pirmahan na (Let’s sign the deal).”

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Pressed for comment on Mayweather’s demand for a larger share of the total revenue, Pacquiao, who was leaving his Forbes Park mansion in a hurry to attend a wedding, said: “I’m not after material things.”

This meant he’s willing to bend to Mayweather’s desires so that the first billion dollar fight ever will push through.

After toying with Chris Algieri, whom he knocked down six times in their World Boxing Organization welterweight title fight in Macau last month, Pacquiao has been taunting Mayweather, regarded as the pound-for-pound king, to fight him.

Accused of deliberately avoiding Pacquiao for fear of losing his unbeaten record (47-0, 26 knockouts), Mayweather may have had enough.

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“We want the fight, we are ready,” Mayweather said. “Let’s make it happen on May 2. Mayweather versus Manny Pacquiao. Let’s do it.”

“I am not ducking or dodging any opponent. Bob Arum is stopping the fight,” he said.

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Arum, of course, is Pacquiao’s chief promoter who once charted Mayweather’s career before they had a falling out.

“I wanted that fight a long time ago and I am just waiting [for] them,” Mayweather said.

Actually, the Mayweather-Pacquiao fight nearly happened in 2010, were it not for a disagreement on a drug testing protocol, as Mayweather insisted on Olympic-style (random) blood testing.

While Mayweather did call Pacquiao once in 2012, his offer of a flat $40-million purse for the eight-division world champion was perceived to be unacceptable then as the pay-per-view income alone would be double than that figure.

Since then, however, Pacquiao has agreed to whatever drug testing style Mayweather wanted and has consented to a 55-45 percent revenue split.

A surprise sixth round knockout loss to Mexican rival Juan Manuel Marquez, following a controversial loss to Tim Bradley in 2012, sent Pacquiao out of orbit for a Mayweather fight.

In 2013, however, Pacquiao returned with a bang by dominating Brandon Rios in Macau before exacting a revenge victory over Bradley in Las Vegas early this year.

Pacquiao’s lopsided unanimous decision over Algieri last month put him back near the level of Mayweather, whose last two victories over Argentine Marcos Maidana were unimpressive, both in scores and pay-per-view sales, which failed to hit the million mark.

While Pacquiao’s fight with Algieri reportedly did more than 400,000 pay-per-view buys, the result was expected as the fight was held outside the United States.

In response to the clamor of fight fans all over the world, Pacquiao said in Macau that he was willing to “bend backward” on all terms just for the fight with Mayweather to push through.

Arum and prominent boxing figures, including Muhammad Ali, former world champions Mike Tyson and Evander Holyfield and World Boxing Council president Mauricio Sulaiman, joined the chorus.

Eventually, the clamor may have been too loud for Mayweather to ignore or pretend not to hear.

On Friday, he decided to abandon his taunts of Pacquiao via social media and took on a different tack.

Mayweather called out his pound-for-pound rival and insisted it was Pacquiao who is ducking him, and not the other way around.

“Let’s make this fight happen. Bob Arum and Manny Pacquiao, you guys have been ducking us for years,” he said. “We are tired of you guys fooling the public, fooling the critics.”

“We tried to make the fight happen before and you guys didn’t want to take random blood and urine testing, so that’s why the fight didn’t happen. Then I offered you $40 million and then you didn’t want to make the fight happen,” Mayweather said.

“You lost twice now and you are coming back, begging for the same money. That is not going to happen,” he added.

Of course, Pacquiao is not asking for an even split.

The Sarangani representative knows that he’ll be lucky if he gets $60 million as opposed to the $100-million guaranteed purse Mayweather is reportedly asking.

Although they are under contract with different networks—Mayweather is with Showtime and Pacquiao with HBO—a collaboration between boxing’s major players has happened before.

In 2002, Lennox Lewis (HBO) fought and knocked out Mike Tyson (Showtime) in the eighth round.

Pacquiao, who’s turning 36 on Dec. 17, just wanted to find out who is really the better fighter between him and Mayweather. Reports from AFP and AP

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TAGS: Bob Arum, Boxing, Floyd Mayweather Jr., Manny Pacquiao, Mayweather, Pacquiao

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