Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather Jr. don’t need to fight this year. They can agree to a match in late 2013, early 2014 or late 2014 and it would still likely be the biggest spectacle in boxing history. As has been the case for two years now, the names sell this match-up, not the ability or dominance of the two men involved.
One of the biggest myths in sports right now is that this prospective bout is predicated on either man’s skill level. That hasn’t been the case since 2010 when the idea of this Dream Fight first surfaced. At that point both Pacquiao and Mayweather were legitimately the world’s top pound-for-pound fighters and a showdown between them would have definitely determined who the better man was.
However, over the past two or so years, both guys clearly began showing signs of decline in their more recent matches, and it became obvious quite quickly that we wouldn’t be getting the fight that folks had been hyping this up to be. They just didn’t possess those skills anymore. For all of 2012, when rumors regarding Pacquiao-Mayweather went into overdrive, people were essentially discussing a match between two fighters whose best days were behind them.
Nobody cared about that, though. Again: at this point, the reason folks are so into the idea of this match isn’t because of how great Paquiao and Mayweather are – it’s because we’ve discussed it so much. It’s because we’ve longed for it for years. No matter when they do it, no matter where they do it, no matter what the public expects or doesn’t expect to see, people would tune in just on the basis of sheer curiosity.
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And if you’re one of those people who weirdly thinks that the time for Pacquiao-Mayweather has come and gone, ask yourself this: why are we still talking about it then? Why are fighters still getting asked about it? Why do you click on news articles pertaining to the matter?
The interest is still there. It will always be there.
"I don't think Mayweather v Pacquiao will happen," Rucky Hatton told ESPN recently. "Since Pacquiao got beat it's lost its sparkle. It's a shame that they don't want to fight each other.
"You go in this sport to prove you're best in the world, so you'd think they'd both be thinking 'can I really beat you? 'I think they should go 50/50 and just get it on."
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Hatton’s comments perfectly illustrate the conflicting feelings most in boxing have about this showdown. First he says he doesn’t think the fight will happen. Then he says it lost its sparkle. Then he says it’s a shame they don’t want to fight each other. (Why is it a shame if it lost its sparkle?) And then he offers a suggestion on how to make it happen.
Everyone still wants to see this fight. Everyone will continue to want to see this fight until the end of time.
The reason Pacquiao and Mayweather haven’t agreed to a Dream Match yet is because they know there is no rush. They understand that the demand will always be there.
Barring either man’s health taking a turn for the tragic this year, Pacquiao and Mayweather meeting at some point in 2014 (as each others’ final opponents) is inevitable.