Mayweather’s name surfaced several times, including a phone call that was recounted by the now-incarcerated fighter during a March interview with Bob Costas.
“I got on the phone with Manny. I done my homework, and seen what he was used to making in big fights,” said Mayweather on Costas Tonight. “So the offer that I gave him. I offered him $40 million, and said that I would wire him $20 million within 72 hours.”
Pacquiao told reporters on Tuesday that he felt disrespected by Mayweather’s refusal of a 50-50 split.
“If you’re a fighter, and you’re of my status, would you fight if I would give you $40 million and nothing to give you on pay per view?” said Pacquiao.
“You will not fight like that. He would be laughing behind my back if I took it. Of course, it’s not a proper negotiation if you’re a businessman, you know?”
ALEX ARIZA RETURNS TO PACQUIAO’S CORNER
Although their relationship has become strained to the point where Roach expressed the potential dismissal of strength and conditioning guru Alex Ariza during a recent episode of HBO’s 24/7 series, Roach said that Ariza will return to Pacquiao’s corner on Saturday night along with Restituto “BuBoy” Fernandez and cut man Miguel Diaz, with whom Ariza has also had disagreements in the past.
“The corner will be me, Miguel Diaz and BuBoy and Alex Ariza. We talked to Manny last night, and we’re going to all sit down and go over everyone’s job and what they’re intended to do,” said Roach.
“No one’s going to step on anyone’s toes. No one’s going to cross over and do anyone else’s job. We had a long talk about that, and there shouldn’t be any problems.”
In the past, Roach has asked Ariza to shout instructions from ringside on his behalf. Roach said he can still work with Ariza that way.
“If I ask Alex to say something, because I don’t have a voice like he does, then, yes, I’ll ask him,” said Roach. “But everyone’s got to understand their roles and we’ll have no problem at all.”
PACQUIAO REPLACES CONCERTS WITH BIBLE STUDY
Pacquiao’s trainer, Freddie Roach, believes that his fighter’s pre-bout marital problems factored into his performance during a disputed majority decision victory over Juan Manuel Marquez in November.
But in advance of Bradley, Pacquiao (54-3-2, 38 knockouts) said that a change in lifestyle, including more devotion to his religious beliefs, has improved his relationship with his wife, Jinkee, as well as his focus for the fight.
“I have peace of mind, no problems with my family,” said Pacquiao. “I am full of the word of God.”
The adjustment means that Pacquiao has done away with singing for his fans at pre- and post-fight concerts.
“Now it’s different. We’re gonna do a Bible Study,” said Pacquiao. “Before and after, we’re gonna do a Bible study.”
There will be singing, but a different type of singing.
“We will sing Christian songs,” said Pacquiao.
PACQUIAO ON GAYS: ‘I WILL SAY THE TRUTH’
Pacquiao also addressed his faith-based comments concerning his stance against same-sex marriage.
“I just say what is true. I’m not going to lie or anything. Whatever the truth is, I will say the truth,” said Pacquaio, later adding that the Bible states “homosexual offenders can not inherit the kingdom of God.”
Pacquiao said that parts of his initial interview about same sex marriage was taken out of context, an assertion he re-iterated on Jimmy Kimmel Live.
“One reporter is asking about what my stand is, and what my comment is about the legalizing of the same sex marriage,” Pacquiao told Kimmel. “I told him that ‘no, I’m against allowing people in the same sex marriage.’ But I’m not saying that I’m condeming the gays.”
On Tuesday, Pacquiao said he was not concerned that the controversy would taint his image.
“That won’t hurt me,” said Pacaquiao. “I know what I told him and I know what I said.”
In fact, Pacquiao believes that fully disclosing himself, personally, endears him to his followers.
“I’m giving an example that in this world, the most important thing is God. You know, I love everybody. I love the people. I want them to go with me into the kingdom of heaven,” said Pacquiao.
“There’s two lives that we can go into after this world — heaven or hell. Because, all of us have eternal life, but are you going to eternal tormentation in hell or are you going to heaven?”
Pacquiao said that the controversy won’t affect his focus for Bradley.
“This fight, I’m very focused on and I’m happy in my training, and Freddie knows that,” said Pacquiao. “I have peace of mind and focus everyday and no distractions.”
ROACH BREAKS DOWN PACQUIAO AGAINST MAYWEATHER
Roach does not buy the notion put forth by Mayweather that, by going toe-to-toe against Miguel Cotto during their clash on May 5, he was simply giving the fans what they wanted to see.
Mayweather dethroned Cotto by unanimous decision, adding the WBC junior middleweight belt to the WBC welterweight crown he already owned.
But Mayweather left the ring with a bloody nose and a slight swelling on areas of his face, one of the few times he suffered such damage during a carrer in which he has amassed a mark of 43-0, with 26 knockouts.
Roach believes Mayweather is slowing down.
“I think that Mayweather has to exchange more now because his legs can’t get him out of the way any more. I think that he’s getting older, and the legs are not what they were,” said Roach.
“He doesn’t move nearly as much as he used to, and I don’t think that’s because he’s making a decision in his career, I think that it’s because he has to do it.”
Roach said he was encouraged by Cotto’s success against Mayweather, particularly since Pacquiao dethroned Cotto as WBO beltholder by 12th round stoppage in November of 2009.
“Cotto fought a very good fight. Much better than I thought that he would. Mayweather is still he biggest competition out there for us, I feel, but we definitely would love to get ready for it,” said Roach.
“I think that [Pacquiao’s] attack and the combinations that he throws would be too busy for Mayweather..If he has to exchange with Manny, then he’s going to lose.”
“One thing about jail is, I spent two days in jail and it sucked,” said Roach. “It can’t do you any good.”
Meanwhile, Pacquiao said that he is praying for Mayweather.
“I’m praying for him. I’m not thinking of him as an opponent or an enemy,” said Pacquiao. “I’m thinking of him as a friend and my brother. I’m praying for him that all things will be fine.”
PACQUIAO WILL ‘CHANGE THE MOOD’ TO A FIGHTING ONE AGAINST BRADLEY
While Pacquiao believes in love for his fellow man, he said that he will flip the switch when he steps into the ring against Bradley.
“I love Bradley as a brother, but we have a job in the ring that we need to do. We have to hurt people. That’s our position and part of the position is to do our job in the ring. After that, nothing personal,” said Pacquiao.
“When I step into the ring, I change the button. I change the mood. I can do that, yes.”
PACQUIAO ACKNOWLEDGES PRESSURE WITH MARQUEZ, WHO WILL BE RINGSIDE
Pacquiao is coming off November’s disputed majority decision victory over four-division champ and WBO interim junior welterweight beltholder Marquez, having previously battled through a draw and a split-decision in their first and second fights.
Marquez will be ringside for Pacquiao-Bradley as a commentator for a Hispanic network, even as he seeks a fourth bout against Pacquiao.
“There is pressure. We did our best in training for this fight. I have to give a good show to the people and make people happy. This fight will be a great fight and people will be satisfied with the result,” said Pacquiao.
“It just happened that we underestimated Marquez. We trained hard for that fight. The training was still the same. But we just underestimated Marquez. The pressure makes me inspired and focused for the fight.”
How could Pacquiao underestimate a man he has gone life-and-death with over the course of three fights, during which he has floored Marquez a combined four times?
“We underestimated him because the first fight, I had a blister in my foot,” said Pacquiao, who later admitted that his overconfidence, at least in part, stemmed from the fact that Marquez was moving up from lightweight directly into welterweight.
“I had been fighting up at 150 and then at 147, and then, this guy moves up from 140 pounds. I had been fighting the bigger guys, and so I underestimated him.”
FRED GETS FREDDIE WITH SIGNATURE MOVE
Roach was called upon to throw out the ceremonial first pitch at last Wednesday’s Los Angeles Dodgers-Milwaukee Brewers game at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles.
But long before he did, the trainer struck out on a curve ball lobbed by his publicist, Fred Sternburg.
“They gave him a ball, and then he goes and does his thing. It was an MLB ball, so I said, ‘I’ll hold onto your ball while you go and do your thing,'” said Sternburg. “So I’m sitting right next to Freddie, and I pull out a pen out, and I signed the ball. But he’s got Tommy Lasorda in his mind.”
Roach later discovered the truth, and told reporters that he believed Sternburg passed the ball off as having been signed by Lasorda.
“You hear about my ball? Tommy Lasorda signed it, you know, and stuff, and Fred Sternburg handed it to me and said, ‘hey Freddie, Tommy signed your ball,'” Roach told the media members.
“So I call people up, and I tell people, ‘yeah, I put it on my mantle. Tommy Lasorda signed it,’ and stuff like this. So I got home and I look at the ball, and it says, ‘Fred Sternburg.'”
Actually, the writing on the ball, said Sternburg, was much more than his name.
Sternburg signed the ball, “Bite me, Fred Sternburg.”
“I’m going to put it on e-bay,” said Roach. “I can sell it for a penny.”
Photos by Tom Hogan, Hogan Photos/Golden Boy Promotions
Photos by Chris Farina, Top Rank
Lem Satterfield can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org