By Greg Aspen: Top Rank promoter Bob Arum may have royally blew in back in 2010 when he had the perfect opportunity to make a fight between boxing’s two biggest stars Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao by not sticking it out with the negotiations, but Arum still feels that it’s not too late to make the fight happen. Arum sees one of the biggest obstacles preventing the fight from going forward right now is the fact that Pacquiao fights for HBO, whereas Mayweather fights on Showtime. However, Arum still sees a fight between them as possible as long as HBO and Showtime can agree to it.
Arum said to Australia’s 116 SEN Radio “The only major impediment is that Mayweather now fights on Showtime and Manny for HBO. When they had the same situation years ago where Lennox Lewis was an HBO fighter and Mike Tyson fought for Showtime. Some together and shared responsibilities of promoting the pay per view and it worked out really well. If Manny demonstrates that he’s back and there’s a public outcry, we should be able to get it done.”
Arum is talking in terms of ancient history as far as HBO and Showtime working together for the Tyson-Lewis fight. That was with different management at Showtime and HBO, and we’re talking about a whole different story now with new guys in charge of those two networks. The two are now really competing with each other, whereas back then HBO had a huge advantage over the upstart Showtime.
Pacquiao will definitely need to demonstrate that he’s back as a fighter, and I’m not sure that beating the hand-picked Brandon Rios will be enough to do the job for their fight on November 23rd. Pacquiao will likely need to get another solid win before he’ll interest Mayweather, if he ever interests him again. Pacquiao has lost his last two fights to Tim Bradley and Juan Manuel Marquez. It would seem pretty obvious that Pacquiao will need to beat Rios and Bradley a the minimum to be considered for a fight against Mayweather. And it might take more than that for him to get the fight, such as a victory over Marquez, if Pacquiao can land that fight. If not, then Pacquiao will need a win over someone like Ruslan Provodnikov. That’s one of the rare names that Pacquiao and Arum have to work with in the division because Pacquiao is mostly fighting Arum’s Top Rank stable fighters at this stage in his career.