Manny Pacquiao and Juan Manuel Marquez will likely fight for the fifth and final time in September. Despite the latter star’s insistence to the contrary, this appears to be one of the few times in recent boxing history when common sense is going to win out.
Early last week Marquez stunned the boxing community when he essentially rejected the idea of granting Pacquiao a chance to avenge his December defeat. Prior to his statements it was all but etched in stone that this pair would battle once more – mostly because it made sense from both a financial and purely logical standpoint.
The idea of these two not scaring off, given their history, understandably rubbed a lot of people the wrong way.
You will recall, it took Marquez four tries to finally earn a single victory over his Filipino counterpart. After each of his failed attempts Pacquiao granted him a rematch. The notion of Marquez not reciprocating that favor was viewed as unbecoming of one of the most respected names in boxing today.
Fortunately, it appears as though the whole thing was a bluff. In an interview with the Manila Standard, Bob Arum made it clear that Pacquiao-Marquez 5 was inevitable. Furthermore, he has a meeting scheduled with Marquez next week in which he expects to iron out all of the details.
“As long as he’s fighting, he’s not a fool. Of course, he’s going to fight Manny rather than fight somebody for a lot less money,” Arum said.
While the Top Rank boss hasn’t always been on point with these sort of predictions, this match-up makes too sense for all involved to ignore. Marquez, short of fighting Floyd Mayweather Jr., will not find another foe who can generate him as big a pay day as Pacquiao can. If he doesn’t retire, it is very difficult to see the 39-year-old fighting someone other than his Filipino rival.
Then again, this is boxing. Dumb things happen. Nothing is official until everyone signs on the dotted line.
Stay tuned, this should be an interesting week.