Manny Pacquiao sent a clear message to Floyd Mayweather. If he wants a fight without having to deal with Top Rank Promotions boss Bob Arum, he will have to wait until 2015.
In a telephone interview with Philboxing’s Eddie Alinea, Pacquiao clarified that a fight against Mayweather is not possible this year without Arum’s blessing.
“Floyd has also been saying, he will only fight me if I separate from Top Rank and Bob Arum. That’s impossible because my contract is valid until the end of this year,” Pacquiao explained in Filipino. “If my contract is not renewed, we can only talk about a possible fight next year.”
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The eight division world champion also addressed the rumors that the mega-fight is set to September.
“If it was already a done deal, is it possible for me not to know about it? I know nothing about the reports in the newspapers,” Pacquiao said. He also denied that he will be flying to the United States to meet with Mayweather. “I have no plan to go to the U.S. to talk to Floyd; that’s also not true,” he added.
“I have been saying this over and over again, I am not afraid to fight anybody, but if somebody doesn’t want to fight me, same here. I, too, won’t face him who doesn’t want to face me,” Pacquiao shared. “Floyd himself has been telling the whole world, he doesn’t want to fight me. The feeling is mutual. But if he finally decides that he wants to face me, I’m okay with it.”
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The two fighters still have no opponents for their upcoming battles. Pacquiao is penciled to fight in Las Vegas on April while Mayweather will fight in May.
According to ESPN’s Dan Rafael, Pacquiao’s opponent will be named in the coming days.
"We are down to business now," Arum told ESPN.com. "Michael (Koncz) is coming over to my house and there will certainly be progress made on Manny's next fight. Then I need some time to finalize a deal with the opponent. I think we will select the opponent [on Sunday, PHL time] and then I will go close a deal with that guy."
WBO welterweight champion Timothy Bradley and WBO light welterweight champion Ruslan Provodnikov are the only two options for Pacquiao as Juan Manuel Marquez expressed he didn't want a fifth fight.
"Marquez has put himself out of the running because he doesn't want the fight," Arum said. "He hasn't priced himself out of the fight, he's just not interested at any price. What he's saying for him, it makes a lot of sense. He's like, 'How can I do any better against Pacquiao than knocking him out?'"