By Mark G. Butcher in Macao: A degree in rocket science is not required to know who Bob Arum believes is responsible for derailing that elusive Floyd Mayweather-Manny Pacquiao superfight.
The long-awaited contest between boxing’s two premier fighters is no closer to happening in 2014 with Mayweather favouring less competitive opposition and the exciting yet vulnerable Amir Khan apparently in pole position for his next ‘event’. According to Arum, boxing politics are not the stumbling block.
“It has nothing to do with Golden Boy, it has nothing to do with me, it has nothing to do with the networks. It is one guy,” said Pacquiao’s promoter, ahead of his ‘Ring Of Gold’ card at the Venetian Resort in Macao on Saturday (February 22nd). “It is Floyd Mayweather who won’t fight Manny Pacquiao for a reason that is plain to me and should be plain to everyone. Manny is a southpaw, he has speed.
“I promoted Mayweather for 10.5 years and I could never get him in the ring, hardly, with a southpaw, particularly a southpaw who could move and hit a little. Floyd doesn’t give a **** about legacy. All he cares about is making money with this stupid Showtime deal.
“He can let Amir Khan swing in the wind. He can fight (Marcos) Maidana who is way too slow to hit him and still make his money. He ain’t looking for trouble. He is looking to retire having fought nobody and go off into retirement. He don’t give a crap about legacy and I really can’t blame him.”
Pacquiao’s trainer Freddie Roach, in Macao to work with his undefeated flyweight contender Zou Shiming, was naturally in agreement.
“Floyd is so interested in keeping that undefeated record so he can say he’s better than Sugar Robinson and all those great fighters,” said Roach. “But losing makes you a better fighter and a better person. You learn more from losses than you do wins. Manny Pacquiao lost but he learned from his losses. Every time we agree to what Floyd asks for there is another excuse. He is good at what he does though. People say Floyd is standing and fighting more and being more TV friendly, but I think it’s because his legs are shot. I think Manny would knock him out.”
Fight fans worldwide would love the chance to see him try.
*The HBO telecast of ‘Ring of Gold’ starts 5pm ET/PT on HBO2 in the US.