The last fighter to convincingly beat Manny Pacquiao plans to reach out to the next one favored to do so, although the legendary Filipino doesn’t see the need for that conversation.
Hall of Fame-elected former five-division champion Floyd Mayweather Jr. is on record stating that he expects
Unified WBC/IBF welterweight titlist Errol Spence (27-0, 21KOs) to prevail in his upcoming August 21 superfight versus Pacquiao at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. A phone call to the undefeated southpaw is expected to take place in the near future, as Mayweather regularly enjoys mentoring the next generation—particularly when it comes to offering advice on familiar topics.
“He hasn’t reached out to me yet. He’s a guy that reaches out sometimes,” Spence acknowledged during a pre-fight press conference held Sunday in Los Angeles to discuss the August 21 Fox Sports Pay-Per-View event. “He talks to me and things like that. He tries to mentor me, so he’ll definitely reach out. If says he’ll reach out, he definitely will.”
Mayweather scored a convincing twelve-round, unanimous decision victory over Pacquiao (62-7-2, 39KOs) in their May 2015 blockbuster event which destroyed every financial mark ever established in the sport. Pacquiao is 5-1 since that night, the only loss coming in a widely disputed twelve-round decision in favor of unbeaten Jeff Horn in their July 2017 WBO welterweight title fight in Horn’s hometown of Brisbane, Australia.
In his most recent start, a then 40-year-old Pacquiao turned back the clock in a twelve-round, split decision victory over Keith Thurman. Their WBA welterweight title fight took place at MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, the same venue that hosted his loss to Mayweather and 13 other fights in his incredible career.
Two months after Pacquiao’s win came Spence’s thrilling split decision victory over Shawn Porter in their September 2019 WBC/IBF title unification clash at Staples Center in Los Angeles. Spence solidified his place atop the welterweight division that night, more so in his dominant win over former two-division champ Danny Garcia last December at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.
The win over Garcia was the first for Spence after recovering from life-threatening injuries sustained in a single car crash in October 2019. It was a reminder of the supreme skill set possessed by the 2012 U.S. Olympian and long-reigning welterweight titlist, a fact that is not at all lost on Pacquiao who doesn’t see what Mayweather has to offer in terms of any words of wisdom.
“Errol don’t need to have advice from Mayweather,” Pacquiao insists. “I believe Errol is better than Mayweather. He’s a [better] fighter than Mayweather.
“He could teach Mayweather how to fight toe-to-toe.”
It’s as high of praise as you can ask from a future Hall of Famer—though perhaps also an early trap being set.
“It is a great compliment,” acknowledged Spence, though with caution. “But Manny Pacquiao is the kind of guy that can lull you to sleep. He’ll give you a lot of compliments, gratitude and things like that. Then as soon as the bell rings, he’s jumping all on you.
“[As far as the compliments] I will take it.”
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox