Boxing


With Pacquiao-Mayweather Deadline Looming, Arum Looking At Other Options - Pac-Man Vs. Margarito In Mexico?

by James Slater - As fight fans probably know, Floyd Mayweather Junior has until tomorrow to sign the contract to face pound-for-pound king Manny Pacquiao; thus giving us the biggest non-heavyweight bout in many a year. After months of negotiating on both sides, with drug test demands made by Team-Mayweather (demands Pacquiao finally agreed to), all that is needed now is the unbeaten 33-year-old's signature on a piece of paper.

However, as has been reported by USA Today, Top Rank head honcho and promoter of Pacquiao, Bob Arum, is not optimistic at all that "Money" will sign tomorrow. But Arum, one of the shrewdest guys in the sport, has a number of alternative options for his fighter should the mega-match not take place this year..

The latest possibility for the Filipino dynamo is a clash with Mexico's Antonio Margarito - in Mexico. The idea of Pac-Man getting it on with the disgraced former welterweight ruler has been floating around for quite a while now, but it was thought the match-up, if it did happen, would go ahead in America; most likely Las Vegas. But, as was reported last week, Margarito was unsuccessful in his attempt last Friday at getting a licence to box in Nevada.

Not to be outdone, Arum now has the idea of holding Pacquiao-Margarito on November 13th, in Monterrey, Mexico - because, of course, "Tony" can box in his homeland, having already done so once since the Shane Mosley "hand-wraps" scandal.

"They'll [the Mexican fans] go absolutely nuts for this," Arum told USA Today with regards to a Pac-Man-Margarito fight in Monterrey. "They have a new arena in Monterrey. The Governor wants it, the city wants it, and Manny is not reluctant to fight a Mexican in Mexico."

The fight, if it happens, could take place at light-middleweight, and it's possible the vacant WBC 154-pound crown will be on the line. Pacquiao, therefore, would have the opportunity to win a world title in an eighth weight class. Margarito would have the opportunity to try and make people forget all about his alleged cheating, as well as to make an absolute ton of money.

But how would the majority of fans, in places other than Mexico, take to this fight if it happened? Many fans are of the opinion that Margarito should never be allowed to fight again, period. These same fans will be angry if the man dubbed "Margacheato" walks into a mega payday against the best fighter on the planet.

And what we all really want, still, is for Pacquiao to fight Mayweather. But, as he explained to USA Today, Arum has heard "nothing" from Mayweather regarding the fight we all want to see.

"We have heard nothing from [Floyd]," Arum said. "But hey, it's not the end of the world. If it doesn't happen this year, hopefully it will happen next year, possibly in May 2011."

Maybe. But why is Mayweather being so silent right now? Does he want to fight Pacquiao or not? By the time next May rolls around Mayweather will be 34-years-old, and even as great as he is, he may start to slow a little as a result of age. Wouldn't he be better off getting it on with the two-years younger Filipino southpaw sooner rather than later?

Who knows, maybe Floyd is playing games and he will in fact sign tomorrow, and the huge fight will be finalised? If not, we may have to get ready for Pacquiao-Margarito instead!

Article posted on 15.07.2010



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