Breathe, boxing world. Floyd Mayweather Jr.’s recently assigned 90-day jail stint will have absolutely no bearing on a potential Manny Pacquiao vs. Mayweather showdown. Zip. Zilch. Nada.
As we have reported on numerous occasions here at Opposing Views, the prospect of Mayweather facing jail time was one that was factored in to all negotiations between his camp and Pacquiao’s.
Top Rank boss Bob Arum reluctantly admitted this much recently when he noted that the inevitable delay -- which would shift the fight from its previously discussed May 5 slot -- would actually give him more time to make the necessary preparations for the dream fight. Plus, even though Arum would never admit this publicly, he no doubt relishes the prospect of pitting Pacquiao against either Timothy Bradley or Juan Manuel Marquez in an early 2012 bout like he wanted to all along.
Meanwhile, the key to negotiations between Pacquiao and Mayweather has always been a civil tone and keeping channels of communication open. The Filipino champion’s numerous concessions in the way of purse size and performance-enhancing drug (PED) stipulations, coupled with the fact at he’s admitted that a deal was “80 to 90 percent” complete means that the hard stuff is mostly out of the way.
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All Mayweather’s jail time means is that there is a minor setback in terms of when the fight can occur. The truth of the matter is that while all of us on the outside were pushing for May 5 to be the fight date, the likelihood of that happening were slim. Insiders have said for weeks that while they firmly believe that Pacquiao vs. Mayweather will in fact happen at some point during the coming year, expecting the bout in May was a little overly-optimistic.
So don’t fret, boxing world. Although it seems like Wednesday’s ruling is a setback, in fact, we’re in the best position for a Pacquiao vs. Mayweather showdown that we have been since talks first started in 2009.