It is s the fight all boxing fans, both die hard and casual, want to see. It’s the fight HBO PPV and Las Vegas would pull out all the stops for. Potentially, it would be the biggest boxing match since Ali/Frazier. Unfortunately, Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Manny Pacquiao is the fight we will never get to see, and it has little to do with boxing.
While on a promotional tour to hype his upcoming championship bout with Miguel Cotto, Mayweather made some very telling remarks about the possibilities of fighting Pacquiao. Here are Floyd’s comments:
“Bob Arum likes to match Top Rank fighters with Top Rank fights. He keeps all the money in house,” Mayweather said.
“Just by speaking to Pacquiao on the phone, I mean, he’s not one of the sharpest knives in the drawer,” Mayweather said. “He faces Floyd Mayweather, he’s not getting 50-50. Not at all. No one is getting 50-50.”
“If I offered him $30 million, he should be happy,” Mayweather said. “If I offered him $30 million and I didn’t give money on the back end, why should I? He’s with Arum right now, and they’re having problems. It’s obvious he must not be getting money on the back end.”
“If I’m scared and I’m a coward, why do you guys want to see me fight?” he said. “Do I want the Pacquiao fight? Absolutely. But it’s going to be hard to make the fight because Arum is worried about getting money.”
Mayweather and Top Rank head promoter Bob Arum haven’t seen eye to eye since Mayweather left Top Rank in 2006 to promote his fights independently (which is still the best personal business move in boxing history). One would think that with the amount of money on the table that Mayweather-Pacquiao would generate the two sides could put their differences aside and make it happen, but that appears to be out of the question.
In my opinion, Mayweather’s reluctance to give Pacquiao a 50/50 split of the purse is really directed at Arum, who as Pacquiao’s promoter would get a large percentage of Pacquiao’s take. Mayweather’s comments about Bob Arum and money are the most candid we have heard on record to date. At the same time, it is very interesting that Mayweather, who left Top Rank to make more money for himself and who refused to give Pacquiao a 50/50 split, is accusing Arum’s greed as the reason the fight won’t happen. Pot, meet kettle.
There are tons of subplots that have been tossed around regarding the Mayweather/Arum/Pacquiao triangle; from the drug testing, to Mayweather’s pending jail sentence not allowing time for construction of an outdoor ring on the Vegas Strip. But in reality the only reason fans will never see Floyd Mayweather in the ring with Manny Pacquiao comes down to one simple word: Money. And that is unfortunate.