Where Floyd Mayweather Jr. has used his Twitter account to tell Manny Pacquiao to “step up punk,” adding that he is “ready to put my belt up,” his Filipino counterpart has responded publicly from the Philippines, declaring that he will fight for a 50-50 split of the purse.
“To all of my fans…Mayweather just needs to agree to and accept a 50 percent split, and if he does, then the fight will go through. He’s the one who needs to agree,” Pacquiao told TV Patrol of ABS-CBN in his native Philippines.
“He’s the one who has to say yes. The reason is because he talks to a lot of people. He has a lot of representatives. If he takes the fight, he can make $50-to-60 million. That’s how much he can make.”
Pacquiao had more to say during a Thursday press conference in Manila, where he was joined by Top Rank Inc. CEO, Bob Arum, his promoter.
“I want to fight him. This is the fight the world wants. Mayweather wants a guaranteed purse, so what he has to do is get a promoter who can give him the guarantee,” said Pacquiao.
“I don’t have problems getting a guarantee because I have a promoter who will give me my guaranteed purse. If he gets a guarantee, then we are going to share the revenue on a 50-50 basis.”
Their debates come during a week when both fighters are expected to announce that they will fight separate opponents.
On Tuesday, Mayweather initiated the dialogue from his Twitter.
“Manny Pacquiao I’m calling you out. Let’s fight May 5th and give the world what they want to see,” wrote Mayweather, who avoided a 90-day jail sentence until June 1 which had threatened his announced target return date of May 5 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. “My jail sentence was pushed back because the date was locked in. Step up punk.”
On Wednesday, Mayweather was at it again.
“‘I’m ready to put my belt up,” wrote Mayweather. “What about you Manny Pacquiao? Let’s make history.”
Arum has said that his stepson, Top Rank President Todd duBoef, has a good relationship with Mayweather. But duBoef told BoxingScene.com that he has yet to hear directly from the fighter.
For starters, I think it’s difficult to negotiate through the media. I think what Mayweather is doing is using Twitter for some public relations, but he knows this is not the right way to negotiate,” said duBoef.
“If he wants to talk, he has my cell number. The problem is, we don’t know who to negotiate with. We have seven different people and we don’t know who the right person is. It’s frustrating.”
In the meantime, Arum and Pacquiao’s advisor, Michael Koncz, have all but dismissed May 5 as an economically illogical date for Mayweather-Pacquiao, citing their camp’s desire to have built a 40,000-seat, temporary outdoor venue on the Las Vegas strip in late May or early-June to maximize the revenue.
The MGM Grand seats about 17,000, which could earn $20 million compared to an additional $30 million that could come from a fight in the larger venue, Koncz said to the Associated Press.
“Why would I tell Manny to fight on the 5th and throw away a percentage of 30 million?” said Koncz. “That’s crazy.”
Arum does not believe that there will be enough time to construct the larger site prior to May 5.
In the meantime, Mayweather, the WBC’s welterweight titleholder, has apparently narrowed his choices of alternative opponents, with WBC junior middleweight titleholder Saul “Canelo” Alvarez, holder of his division’s WBC crown, being at the top of the list.
Leonard Ellerbe, CEO of Mayweather Promotions, told Kevin Iole of Yahoo!Sports that Mayweather’s next opponent should be announced as early at the end of this week.
Holder of the WBO’s welterweight belt, Pacquiao is reportedly considering WBA junior middleweight beltholder Miguel Cotto, WBA/WBO lightweight titleholder Juan Manuel Marquez, IBF/WBA junior welterweight beltholder Lamont Peterson or Peterson’s WBO division counterpart Tim Bradley.
Arum and Koncz presented their names to Pacquiao on Tuesday.
Photo by Chris Farina, Top Rank Inc.
Photo by Tom Hogan, Hogan Photos/Golden Boy Promotions
Photo by Chris Farina, Top Rank Inc.
Lem Satterfield can be reached at email@example.com