by James Slater - Reigning pound-for-pound king and global superstar Manny Pacquiao returned home to The Philippines earlier today, and as he was mobbed by fans and members of the media at Manila airport, the 31-year-old all time great spoke once again about possible retirement.
Article posted on 23.03.2010
For a while now, both Pac-Man and his trainer, Freddie Roach, have spoken of the southpaw dynamo having just one or two more fights before opting to hang up the gloves. And now that Pacquiao has beaten Miguel Cotto and Joshua Clottey, thus proving he is a fighter who is more than capable of defeating genuine welterweights, the time may have arrived for Pac-Man to move into politics, one of his other interests, full time.
Of course, fans everywhere are hoping Manny doesn't quit - not least because they want to see him face the superb Floyd Mayweather Junior in a fight that would be absolutely huge - and there is still the possibility this super-fight will take place. I wouldn't bet on it, though - not after reading what Pacquiao told reporters in Manila earlier today upon his arrival home from Dallas..
"I might retire. My mother has been begging me to stop fighting, so we'll talk about this," Pacquiao said today. "I have been in boxing for a long time and I have given so many honours to my country. Even without the elections and the politics, my retirement will largely depend on my family's decision. We have to respect our parents, without them, we wouldn't be here."
Pacquiao will now concentrate on the May 10th election in which he will attempt to win a seat in The House of Representatives in his homeland. However, Pacquiao did speak briefly about the fight we all want to see - he against Mayweather Junior.
"I came this far in my boxing career without Mayweather, so I see no need to call him out," Pac-Man said. "He needs me to bolster his career. I am open to him fighting me any time he wants to."
So, will Pacquiao face the Mayweather-Mosley winner next, will he fight someone other than the May 1st winner instead, or will he indeed retire?
According to Dan Rafael, who spoke on Friday Night fights this past week, the people at Top Rank are confident Pacquiao will fight again in November, whether he wins the forthcoming election or not. And, the names being mentioned for Pac-Man to fight if it's not Mayweather or Mosley, according to Top Rank, are Edwin Valero, Antonio Margarito and Juan Manuel Marquez, who would be facing Manny for a third time.
All of these possibilities are intriguing ones, and either fight would almost certainly prove a big hit (as popular as he is right now, Manny could fight practically ANYONE and the fight would sell).
It's all up to the best fighter in the sport today as to what he does next, but I'm sure I'm not alone in hoping Pacquiao does fight on, for at least one more bout.