By Ronnie Nathanielsz
Top Rank promoter Bob Arum concedes “lets forget the May date” for a possible fight between “Fighter of the Decade” Manny Pacquiao and undefeated Floyd Mayweather. But he’s working on a November mega-buck fight instead.
In a telephone conversation with BoxingScene.com/Manila Standard, Arum said “what we are trying to accomplish assuming he (Mayweather) is going to fight in May and Manny is going to fight in June, is that we are pressing to see if we can get a contract signed between the two fighters for November.”
The astute promoter noted “that way the people will be assured that the fight is going to happen and there won’t be any of this nonsense which we can put behind us so we can do a huge, huge promotion.”
Arum said his problem is that he doesn’t know whom he has to deal with on the Mayweather side but that he’s “trying to get this thing sorted out." He said the trouble is "one day its this guy, the next day its that guy so I don’t know” in the wake of reports that the Mayweather people were having internal differences and “fighting with each other.”
He commended Pacquiao adviser Michael Koncz who, in Arum’s words, “went to the end to try and make this (fight) happen and so did I. This is nonsense.”
Koncz had met with diferrent people following his conversations with Mayweather by telephone, but in the end it didn't pan out at least for May.
Arum said that when it looked like some progress was being made Mayweather threw everybody off by saying he wanted a 70-30 or 60-40 split at least, "after all sides had agreed to a 50-50 split. ”
With time running out Arum disclosed that Koncz would be returning to the Philippines over the weekend after having spoken to Pacquiao about the most recent developments one of which is that a rematch against Miguel Cotto also appears to be out.
Arum said Cotto, in a meeting a couple of days ago at the Top Rank office said he can’t make the welterweight limit of 147 and Pacquiao won’t move up because he’ll be giving away too much weight. He said Koncz “will talk with Manny and we’ll finalize everything and we all have in mind who the opponent will be” which points to the only name left on the four names initially submitted to Pacquiao, WBO light welterweight champion, undefeated Timothy Bradley.
Bradley is fine with trainer Freddie Roach and presumably with Arum since he handles the fighter but Koncz has expressed reservations because of Bradley's head-first style which may re-open a nasty cut on Pacquiao's eyebrow which needed 23 stitches after the Marquez fight.
With Pacquiao making it clear he doesn’t want a fourth fight with Marquez and a lack of interest among fans and Lamont Peterson ordered by the WBA to give Amir Khan a rematch following his controversy-riddled win to grab Khan’s title, only Bradley remains on the list.