Manny Pacquiao has been in the headlines for all the wrong reasons recently, and it doesn’t look like those stories are about to go away any time soon.
Late last week, Opposing Views published a report detailing Pacquiao’s alleged financial and legal problems stemming from a lawsuit filed by his old accounting firm, VisionQwest. The company reportedly accused the No. 1 pound-for-pound fighter in the world of hiring their firm to do some clean-up as it related to his taxes and other financial workings, but never getting properly compensated for their services. That after going so far as to lend Pacquiao money, he simply terminated their relationship and moved on.
Now, to be fair, at the moment, these are just allegations. However, it's also worth noting that this isn’t the first time that Pacquiao’s financial difficulties have been the subject of debate. Earlier in the year, Opposing Views detailed how despite countless massive paydays over the years, the Filipino champion’s net worth was surprisingly lower than you would it expect to be. That, coupled with numerous leaks out of Pacquiao’s camp over the years that perhaps his advisors weren’t adequately advising him, has created a certain pattern of uncertainty regarding just how well the champ is doing when he’s not in the ring.
During a recent interview with Michael Marley of Examiner.com, boxing commentator Ronnie Nathanielsz touched on how Pacquiao’s financial standing may impact the rest of his career.
"Manny won't retire anytime soon," Nathanielsz told Marley. "He will keep on fighting for a long time because he needs the money and because he loves the limelight. Being in the limelight only helps his political ambitions and Manny is keenly aware of this. When I say he needs the money, what I mean is he spends a lot of money.”
That’s a pretty huge statement to make and, if anyone can make it, it’s undoubtedly a guy as knowledgeable as Nathanielsz. For one thing, just the notion that Pacquiao burns through cash so quickly that he actually needs to keep fighting in order to ensure that he stays liquid is a somewhat startling revelation. In a way, it confirms everything we’ve heard about the champ over the years and offers a bit of validity to the stories of his questionable financial status.
The other thing it does is point out that money is a central motivation of Pacquiao’s. Not historical standing. Not legacy. Money. In a way, it lends a bit of credence to the theory floating around that Pacquiao and Arum are simply maximizing their cash flow and minimizing risk by letting the Filipino champion pound on various Top Rank fighters – thus keeping all of the dollars in the family. It may not generate as much cash in a single fight as a bout versus a non-Top Ranker would, but in the long term, it ends up being more profitable for Arum and Pacquiao who undoubtedly take a slice of everything.
Keep an eye on how Arum and Pacquiao go about selecting their next few fights. Will it be based on money or based on merit? The answer to that will tell you everything you need to know about where their interests lay.