Bob Arum has an agreement in place for Manny Pacquiao to defend his welterweight title against Jeff Horn on April 22, pending approval from Pacquiao, whom the 85-year-old promoter plans to visit in the Philippines next week to finalize the deal, Arum told RingTV.com on Tuesday night.
The bout is ticketed for overseas and could represent the first leg of an ambitious plan to stage a world tour in other locales for Pacquiao as he enters the twilight of his career. Arum hopes to put the bout in Australia, where Horn (16-0-1, 11 knockouts) is from at Suncorp Stadium, which seats up to 52,500. While the U.S. television is not yet set, Arum told RingTV.com earlier this month he wants to avoid putting the bout on pay-per-view. Pacquiao is a senator in the Philippines but will be in recess in April.
“We have an agreement with Horn but it’s all subject to Manny’s approval,” Arum said in a brief phone interview since he was busy having dinner with Horn’s promoter. “And it’s all subject to getting a site. So it’s still up in the air but it looks like it’s headed (with a bout with Horn).”
Arum worked out the parameters of a deal with Dean Lonergan of Duco Events, who handles the 28-year-old Horn, over the past couple days in Las Vegas. Arum is involved in promoting Horn as part of the deal he made for his heavyweight Andy Ruiz to face Joseph Parker on Dec. 10 in New Zealand.
Terence Crawford, a unified junior welterweight champion, was also briefly under consideration to face the 38-year-old Pacquiao (59-6-2, 38 KOs) before it became clear that Pacquiao’s side wanted to go in a different direction. Crawford will look to return in May, Arum said, with a possible fight against Pacquiao looming in late 2017. “Hopefully Manny is still around by the end of the year,” said Arum, “and Terence will get up to bat.”
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