Manny Pacquiao will 'move on' past Mayweather to other fight negotiations, promoter says
Manny Pacquiao's promoter announced just after midnight Pacific time that the Filipino superstar boxer will pursue other opponents after hearing no indication whether Floyd Mayweather Jr. wants to fight him in a bout that has the potential to be the most lucrative event in the sport's history.
Pacquiao promoter Bob Arum, in a conference call with reporters that began minutes after Arum imposed a Friday midnight deadline for Mayweather to express interest, said staging a Pacquiao-Mayweather super-fight on Nov. 13 in Las Vegas is in grave danger as he works to "secure another opponent."
"Floyd, for whatever reason, didn't want to commit," Arum said.
Arum said he's previously laid out plans detailing Pacquiao's terms to HBO Sports President Ross Greenburg, who Arum said he believed forwarded the information to Mayweather manager Al Haymon. Arum said Greenburg performed as a type of "mediator" in the deal.
"I've had no negotiations or discussions with any other fighter," Arum said. "This Friday was the end of the exclusivity agreement."
Arum said the deadline was installed because of Pacquiao's hectic schedule as a congressman in the Philippines, and he needs to begin firmly planning promotional events such as news conferences.
Arum said he'll turn his attention to Pacquiao fights against either Miguel Cotto, who Pacquiao defeated in November, or former welterweight champion Antonio Margarito.
"It's dead when we conclude a deal with an opponent for Manny's fight in November, and then he'lll look to do a fight with Floyd next year," Arum said.
Talks to stage Mayweather-Pacquiao first emerged late last year when Pacquiao defeated former welterweight champion Cotto by 12th-round knockout. The negotiations crashed, however, after some in the Mayweather camp implied Pacquiao had used performance-enhancing drugs, and Pacquiao declined to accept Mayweather's push for a drug-testing protocol supervised by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency.
Pacquiao didn't want to submit to blood tests too close to a fight, his camp said. Pacquiao budged on the issue during these talks, moving from a 24-day cutoff of blood testing to 14 days.
But all along the Mayweather camp has been silent. Mayweather's uncle and trainer, Roger Mayweather, faces an Aug. 2 trial date for allegedly assaulting a female boxer. Arum said he "speculates" that uncertainty may have contributed to Mayweather's silence.
Arum added he believes a deal with Cotto or Margarito for a Nov. 13 bout would get made within 10 days. A bout with Margarito would likely be destined for Monterrey, Mexico, because the Tijuana fighter is not licensed to fight in the U.S. after being disciplined by the California State Athletic Commission last year.
Photo: Manny Pacquiao is surrounded by the media following an orientation for new congressman in the Philippines. Credit: Rolex Dela Pena / EPA