Pacquiao not keen on doing exhibition fights vs non-boxers
MANILA, Philippines—Manny Pacquiao isn’t settling for non-boxers for a quick cash grab.
While Floyd Mayweather’s last foray inside a boxing ring was in an exhibition against YouTuber Logan Paul, his generational rival Manny Pacquiao will be challenging Errol Spence Jr. for the WBC and IBF World welterweight titles.
Pacquiao, 42, said it’s not in him to “cheat” the viewing public, only preferring to match up against those in the upper echelon of the sport.
— Manny Pacquiao (@MannyPacquiao) June 25, 2021
“Boxing is my passion,” said Pacquiao in Filipino during a virtual press conference on Saturday. “I won’t cheat or say that boxing is just a game. I won’t fight someone who’s not a boxer.”
“I don’t like that. When I fight, I represent our country and it’s a way for me to unite the Filipinos.”
Pacquiao and Mayweather fought once in 2015 in what was dubbed “the Fight of the Century ” with the American icon taking a unanimous decision win.
Although Mayweather has a win over Pacquiao, the two were always synonymous with each other and were always discussed together as the greatest fighters of their era.
Mayweather has since retired from competition with his last fight in August 2017 ending in a technical knockout win over MMA superstar Conor McGregor.
From that point forward, Pacquiao went 3-0 in title fights and the last one awarding the Filipino the WBA Super title in his split decision win over Keith Thurman in July 2019.
Pacquiao is aware that his fight against Spence would be monumental as it could ultimately add the WBA Super welterweight championship, if the sanctioning body returns Pacman’s status as champion.
The WBA now lists Pacquiao as “champion in recess” due to inactivity.
A win could also lead Pacquiao to a unification bout against WBO champion Terence Crawford in the 147-pound division but the Filipino’s focus right now is in his upcoming fight.
“It depends [if I could fight Crawford] because my fight against Spence could have three belts at stake so this is a good fight,” said Pacquiao. “God willing I win this one, but I really can’t say that this could be my last fight, it could be. I’ll take it one at a time.”
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