Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather Jr. should have already set up their next fights by now. At the end of 2013, after both men successfully finished off the year with dominant victories against clearly overmatched opponents, their 2014 schedules looked more or less set in stone. Mayweather would take on Amir Khan, and Pacquiao would participate in a rematch with Timothy Bradley.
So why hasn’t either bout been officially scheduled yet?
Mayweather, 36, is three fights into his massive Showtime deal and is in desperate need of high-profile opponents. After his match-up against Robert Guerrero did unimpressive (by his standards) numbers, Mayweather gave the people what they wanted and fought Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez. Seeking to replicate the success of that fight, he let it be known (through various sources) that he was contemplating taking on Amir Khan – a reasonably well-known boxer with some name recognition in the United States.
That was in November. More than a month later, we’re still waiting on an announcement.
Pacquiao, 34, is coming off a great showing versus Brandon Rios. That’s the good news. The bad news is: nobody cared. Nobody bothered tuning in to see him beat down a guy they had never heard of in Macao. He too needs a commercially viable foe. Bradley, who beat Pacquiao in 2012, was said to be the likeliest option. However, a month later, here we are – still no official fight announcement in sight.
Meanwhile, Pacquiao and Mayweather have been jabbering at one another non-stop over the past few weeks. First the former said he wanted to fight Mayweather. Then the latter took a pointless shot at him on Twitter. Then Pacquiao insinuated that Mayweather was a coward and ducking him. And so on and so forth.
Are Pacquiao and Mayweather working on something behind the scenes? It’s impossible to say. But one thing is certain: the fact that neither guy has set a 2014 fight yet is really, really strange.