It’s finally official: Manny Pacquiao versus Floyd Mayweather Jr. is happening at some point in 2012.
After more than a year of volleying blame back and forth, Pacquiao and Mayweather have reportedly ironed out most of the bigger details, and have set forth a tentative plan, which includes them fighting in the near future.
Appearing at the Sofitel Hotel in Manila with promoter Peter Maniatis, TV host of KO boxing in Australia, Pacquiao kept it short and sweet (via Digital Journal):
“I will fight Mayweather next year.”
Game, set, match.
Following countless failed negotiations, it appears as though both Pacquiao and Mayweather are finally making the necessary sacrifices to appease each other. Mayweather, according to recent statements by Top Rank boss Bob Arum, has officially agreed to split the purse and all other financial intake from the superfight straight down the middle. That stance, of course, is a far cry from the majority stake he originally demanded when negotiations first began.
Pacquiao, for his part, seems to have finally come down on his refusal to agree to Mayweather’s unusually stringent performance-enhancing (PED) testing requirements.
Before Pacquiao and Mayweather can fight each other, though, they have to take care of some of the tune-up fights they’ve scheduled for themselves over the next couple of months. Mayweather is set to square off against Victor Ortiz on September 17 at the MGM Grand, while Pacquiao is booked to take on Juan Manuel Marquez in the third and final chapter of their longstanding feud on November 12.
Because details of this superfight are still trickling in at this point, it’s impossible to say for certain whether HBO or Showtime will get the rights to this fight.
It’s hard to imagine that HBO would allow a fight of this magnitude to slip through its fingers; However, if ever there was a fight for Showtime to loosen its own purse strings and abandon its “we don’t overpay for fights” philosophy, this fight of the century would be it.