By Ronnie Nathanielsz
Manny Pacquiao’s offer to fight Floyd Mayweather Jr. “anytime, anywhere,” with all proceeds going to worldwide charities, has won the admiration of Top Rank’s Bob Arum.
The astute promoter told the BoxingScene.com/Manila Standard that Pacquiao’s unprecedented offer was “an incredible statement for the sport of boxing,” and it had his full support.
While Arum did concede that “money is important,” he believed that Pacquiao’s offer was a major boost for the sport of boxing.
Pacquiao earlier scoffed at the claim that he was only looking to fight Mayweather for the money.
“I am willing to fight for charity,” said Pacquiao, who believes that depending on Mayweather’s response, fans will know who is willing to fight and who is not.
Pacquiao added: “Let’s see what his answer will be since he claimed I was desperate for money and I am willing to fight for nothing.”
The Filipino icon expressed confidence that his offer to Mayweather should not be a problem for both their promoters.
Pacquiao also emphasized he is “ready to submit to any kind of stringent drug testing and challenged the undefeated American to sign a contract, which will state that gate receipts, PPV and endorsements as well as their guaranteed purses would be donated to charities around the world.”
Meantime, both Arum and Pacquiao’s adviser Michael Koncz told BoxingScene/Manila Standard that while they are talking to the handlers of World Boxing Organization welterweight champion Timothy Bradley about a possible rematch with Pacquiao at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on April 12, nothing has been finalized yet.
Koncz informed us that he is scheduled to return to Manila on Sunday.
“Manny and I have not finished our negotiations yet (with Bradley’s camp),” said Koncz.
Koncz made the statement in response to reports quoting sources that the choice is Bradley, who won a widely criticized split decision win over Pacquiao in June 2012 in Las Vegas.
Arum himself said that while Bradley appears to be the frontrunner, he strongly downplayed reports that a deal had been made.