Manny Pacquiao could finally fight Floyd Mayweather Jr. next year, Pacman said in a recent interview.
The two biggest boxers in the world at present have been close to fighting several times but it hasn’t happened yet.
Signs are building that indicate a bout happening next year, either in the spring or fall.
“It could happen next year,” Pacquiao confirmed to Phil Boxing. He said that sources told him that Showtime wants Mayweather to take the bout against him because it could be the network’s opportunity to recoup some its huge investment in Mayweather.
“But right now, I would like to focus on the [Chris] Algieri fight,” said Pacquiao, referring to the November bout.
Mayweather and his compatriots have emphasized that they’re open to a Mayweather-Pacquiao fight, but first Pacman must defeat Algieri.
“At the end of the day, Pacquiao has a fight in front of him and he has to win, and if he wins then it becomes a reality, the possibility of [Mayweather vs Pacquiao] happening can become a reality,” Mayweather’s uncle Jeff Mayweather recently told On the Ropes Boxing.
“But, other than that, it won’t happen.”
Asked about the frontrunner for Mayweather’s next opponent, he said that it’s really down to Pacquiao or Khan.
“To be honest, I can’t really say who it is because I’m not one hundred percent sure. If they do it by names — which Floyd normally does — it may actually help the pay–per-view revenue, it’s gonna possibly be Khan or maybe Pacquiao next for Floyd, because there’s no other options out there in the weight class that make any sense,” he said.
Pacquiao previously said that it’s ultimately up to Mayweather because he’s been open to a fight the whole time.
“The possibility to fight with him, you know, the question is not for us,” Pacquiao said, reported Sky Sports. “It’s for them because any time we are willing to fight, any time. I think that question belongs to them, their camp.”
Pacman said that his trainer Freddie Roach has grown weary of the constant obstacles that Mayweather’s camp has set up, including issues with television networks and blood testing. Then again, the Mayweather side has in the past blamed Pacquiao’s camp for the bout not happening as of yet.
“We can’t waste our time waiting for him,” said Roach. “We’ve done everything we could to make that fight happen. It’s like, we’re available if he’s interested in it, but again we can’t sit around waiting for him.”
Mayweather said after his recent defeat of Marcos Maidana that a fight with Pacman is certainly possible.
“We don’t know what the future holds, as of right now. Anything is possible. … At the moment I want to go home, have a break, spend some time with my children and then see who’s next in May. Hopefully it’s Manny Pacquiao,” Mayweather said after his fight, reported the Daily Mail.
The pair nearly fought in 2010 but some disagreements happened, leading to the fight not happening.
“Manny needs to focus on the guy that’s in front of him. “Once he gets past that task we’ll see what the future holds,” Mayweather added. “You saw what happened the last time with Marquez. Pacquiao wasn’t focused, he was thinking too much about Floyd Mayweather and you saw what happened (Pacquiao was knocked out in six rounds).”
Promoter Bob Arum, who formerly promoted Mayweather but now promotes Pacquiao, alleged recently that Mayweather is scared.
“There is only now one impediment and he’s been the major impediment to this fight and that’s Floyd Mayweather,” he told the Telegraph.
The biggest reason that Mayweather is “looking for every excuse not to do the fight” is because Money is afraid of fighting a southpaw, or left-handed fighter, Arum says.
“I promoted the guy for ten years and I know how difficult it was to get him in the ring with any southpaw. When you talk about a southpaw who can move like Manny, that’s not the kind of opponent that Mayweather feels he would do well against. That’s the problem. If Manny agreed to fight right-handed, the fight would be agreed in five minutes.”