Bracing for the increasing likelihood that Floyd Mayweather Jr. will not fight Manny Pacquiao in November, Pacquiao’s adviser has met with Top Rank promoter Bob Arum in Las Vegas to look over alternative plans.
While awaiting Mayweather’s decision — Arum told ESPN.com that Friday is the deadline — Michael Koncz and Arum on Monday discussed proposals for Pacquiao to fight former welterweight titlist Antonio Margarito or face Miguel Cotto in a rematch in the event Mayweather declines the Nov. 13 fight.
“We’re ready to go on with the Mayweather fight,” Arum said, “but we have to make contingency plans just in case and I don’t really want to talk about that too much. But Mayweather has until the end of the week. He could wait until the last minute. If it’s Friday and it’s 11 p.m., and he says we have a deal, we have a deal.”
Arum and Koncz said they were hopeful Mayweather would accept the deal, but that they had to be prepared in the event he doesn’t. Arum has said for weeks that Mayweather’s camp has a contract for the fight and that Pacquiao has accepted the terms, including provisions for drug testing (blood and urine) leading up to the bout.
When Pacquiao and Mayweather were negotiating during December and January for a fight in March, the talks fell apart when they could not come to an agreement on drug testing protocol.
Pacquiao then went on to easily outpoint Joshua Clottey to retain his welterweight title in March, while Mayweather dominated Shane Mosley in May.
“We’re waiting on Floyd,” Arum said. “He might not want to fight again this year. If he wants to say, ‘See you next year,’ there’s always next year. But I don’t think we can’t wait much longer for him to make up his mind because if we do the fight we want to make it as big as we can make it, and that takes time. I think Floyd will give us the courtesy of a response one way or the other. What that response will be, I really don’t know.
“That’s the fight we want and that’s the fight we’re in for, but if we can’t do that fight there are other opponents.”
Koncz and Arum wouldn’t go into specifics of the terms on the table for the fight with Mayweather but Koncz said “a 50-50 deal was proposed and there was no argument against it.”
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