Arum open to Pacquiao-Matthysse but not in April
Top Rank chief Bob Arum is open to the possibility of making a fight between Manny Pacquiao and Lucas Matthysse of Argentina happen.
Just don’t expect it to happen soon with Arum planning to pit Pacquiao against a different opponent in Mike Alvarado for the Filipino boxing icon’s scheduled ring return on April 14. Alvarado is also promoted by Top Rank.
In an interview with BoxingScene.com, Arum said a Pacquiao-Matthysse bout is “something that he’s willing to explore in the future,” according to the story.
“Well, [it wasn’t possible to do next] because nobody’s ever talked to Matthysse, about whether he’s ready [to even fight in April]. I think some writer asked [Pacquiao] if he’d want to fight, and he said ‘yes,'” Arum explained in a separate interview. “Would he fight Matthysse down the road? Why not? But we were up against a deadline in April, so at that point not having talked to the opponent, it was a non-starter.”
The potential duel surfaced after Matthysse called out Pacquiao among the top fighters he want to face this year following his eighth-round knockout of Tewa Kiram of Thailand last month at The Forum in Los Angeles where he won the WBA “regular” welterweight belt.
The 39-year-old Pacquiao then, added fuel to Matthysse’s comments in a interview with the Manila Bulletin a week ago.
“I want Matthysse,” Pacquiao told the Manila Bulletin. “This is the fight that I like… a fight fans would also like to see. I can fight in April or even May.”
Pacquiao (59-7-2, 38 KOs) hasn’t fought since yielding the WBO welterweight title to Jeff Horn in a controversial decision last July in Brisbane, Australia.
If the fight eventually comes to fruition later in the year, it promises to be no cakewalk for Pacquiao with the 35-year-old Matthyse armed with knockout power, having won 36 of his 44 fights by stoppage against four losses.
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