Saturday, March 25, 2023  |


Manny Pacquiao to Floyd Mayweather Jr.: Sign the contract this month

Photo by Chris Farina/Top Rank

Photo by Chris Farina/Top Rank


Manny Pacquiao has set a deadline of “this month” for Floyd Mayweather Jr. to sign for a May 2 clash at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, according to a report in The Los Angeles Times.

“My promoter and I, we’ve already agreed to the terms and conditions of whatever he wants. We’re just waiting on the signed contract from him,” said Pacquiao, according to The Times. “That’s the hard part – if they will fight or not. We have to know soon, because if they will not fight, we can move on and choose another opponent. We have a deadline ÔǪ this month.”

Pacquiao (57-5-2, 38 knockouts) is reportedly agreeable to the demands of Mayweather (47-0, 26 KOs) of a 60/40 split of the purse in favor of the undefeated fighter, as well as the site and a drug-testing protocol.

“The fans deserve this fight. No more will people bother me, ‘Can this fight happen?’ It’s time to make it happen. We’re waiting on a signed contract from him,” said Pacquiao, in part.

“My job is as a boxer – to know how much I get and prepare for a fight,” said Pacquiao. “We just want to make that fight happen for the sake of the fans, for the sake of millions of people around the world who are excited to see that fight.”

With Mayweather being aligned with Showtime, and Pacquiao with HBO, among the details discussed have been how the networks can jointly broadcast the bout, according to The Times. Officials from Showtime and HBO have reportedly discussed something similar to Lennox Lewis-Mike Tyson in June 2002.

“The challenge is ÔǪ we know [Mayweather is] undefeated and claiming he’s No. 1 pound-for-pound in the world. I just want to prove who’s really No. 1,” said Pacquiao. “If the fight is on and he beats me, I’m really convinced he is No. 1. If not, I’m No. 1 …We’re waiting on the signed contract. It’s up to them.”

Key aides are reportedly working on Mayweather and Pacquiao through Corporation Chief Executive Les Moonves of CBS, Showtime’s parent company. Showtime’s Stephen Espinoza was reportedly part of a Jan. 14 meeting in New York that included HBO chairman and CEO Richard Plepler, HBO Sports President Ken Hershman and Showtime chairman and CEO Matt Blank.

“What I can say is that we are in discussions, and we are making progress,” said Espinoza, during a Jan. 15 interview with “We’ve got a long way to go, and significant open issues to overcome. But we’re making meaningful progress, and we’ll continue to work at it.”

A potential conflict for Mayweather-Pacquiao was a May 2 HBO Pay-Per-View bout between RING/WBC middleweight champion Miguel Cotto and Canelo Alvarez, the RING’s No. 1-rated junior middleweight behind RING champion Mayweather.

But the Cotto-Alvarez talks ended last week, causing some to speculate that a Mayweather-Cotto rematch could happen. Mayweather defeated Cotto by unanimous decision in May 2012.

Top Rank CEO Bob Arum, who handles Pacquiao, was asked if he was concerned about Mayweather fighting Cotto.

“No,” said Arum. “If he wants to do that, then let him do that.”