By Sean Crose
Various outlets are reporting that Manny Pacquiao has promptly responded to Floyd Mayweather’s impromptu challenge to finally get it on in the ring on May Second of next year. And, according to most reports, the man from General Santos City is a bit put off with Mayweather acting like it’s Floyd whose taken the bull by the horns.
Talking to the AFP, Pacquiao was blunt in his assessment of Mayweather’s now famous Showtime interview on Friday night. “He has reached a dead end,” the fast punching, multi-time champion claimed. “He has nowhere to run but to fight me.”
Yet that wasn’t all the guy had to say. “”Mayweather,” Pacquiao continued, “can get the amount he wants. As early as January this year, I challenged him to a charity fight. Until now, he has not agreed to it. So, money is not the issue in our fight.”
If Pacquiao means what he says – and I see no reason to believe he doesn’t – he’s taken one of the best cards out of Mayweather’s hand if the fight doesn’t happen. For it will now be quite difficult for the man they call Money to accuse Pacquiao of refusing the fight for financial reasons, should negotiations fall apart.
“Gawin niya, hindi puro salita,” the Filipino congressman was quoted as saying by Spin.ph. According to Google Translate, that means “Do it, not just words,” in English.
Sounds like Mayweather wasn’t the only one laying down challenges this past weekend. ““I’m not after material things, so money won’t be an issue,” Pacquiao continued, just to make things clear.
Indeed, Spin.ph also reports that Michael Konz, Pacquiao’s adviser, echoes his man’s sentiments. “We’ll not gonna throw any monkey wrench in there to manipulate or cause any unnecessary difficulties,” he’s reportedly said.
One thing Pacquiao and Konz do appear to be serious about, however, is the matter of weight. “If the Floyd fight is made, we will fight at 147. We will not put a catch weight in there,” Konz is quoted as saying.
What’s most surprising about all this may be Pacquiao’s overall tone. Reading Pacquiao’s quotes to AFP, it’s obvious the man doesn’t share the sky-high view of Mayweather’s skills that the rest of the planet seems to.
“You all know his (Mayweather’s) fighting style. Most of his previous fights, if not all, induced us to sleep.”
“I know what I have to do. I will chase him wherever he goes just in case he decides to run around the ring.”
“I will try my best to (make) this a thrilling and entertaining fight. But I doubt if he’s gonna engage me in a slugfest.”
These words don’t come from an edgier than thou fight writer. They come from PacMan himself.
For the record, Pacquiao’s promoter, Top Rank honcho Bob Arum, has decided not to bite in regards to Mayweather’s comments. After being asked this weekend who was keeping Floyd and Manny from fighting in the ring (remember, Mayweather accused Arum of preventing the bout from happening), Arum was ready with a quick response.
“You have to judge that yourself,” he answered. “It’s certainly not us.”
For his part, Arum played the role of a man taking the high road.
“We’ve done everything to come to the table and to work out a deal,” he continued. “We’re not gonna resort to invective.”
Of course, there are those who don’t believe the fight will ever happen anyway. Then there are those who are clearly wary of this latest round of hype. “I’ll believe it when I see it,” Ring Magazine quotes Oscar De La Hoya as saying of the potential superbout this weekend.
There is a matter worth noting, however. Back on December 4th, Wilmar Patino had an article up at BoxingNews24 which was an interesting read, to say the least.
“My sources also told me,” Patino wrote, “that this contract has been worked on longer than we knew. They also told me that the Foot Locker commercial and this new Pacquiao that goes around calling out Mayweather more than ever is part of the promotional plan. This was supposedly already discussed to begin building up the fight.”
Whatever these “sources” claim may not even be close to true. Yet it’s worth wondering at this point if we may – just MAY – be witnessing a “promotional plan” consisting of pre-approved media statements being played out before our very eyes and ears.