Today in Beverly Hills, Manny Pacquiao and Juan Manuel Marquez kicked off their three-city press tour. This will be the fourth fight between the two future Hall of Fame fighters, and for a lot of boxing fans, hopefully the last.
The press tour will stop in New York City next and will finish off in Marquez’s native Mexico City. The fight will take place at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas on December 8 and will be broadcast on HBO pay-per-view.
The biggest news that came out of today’s press conference may actually have nothing to do with the fight at all, but with who was seen backstage with the Filipino slugger: rapper 50 Cent.
Rick Reeno of BoxingScene.com posted a photo of the two superstars together earlier today at the press conference, and there have been multiple reports over the last week that 50 Cent and Pacquiao would be forming a promotional company together after the demise of TMT Promotions.
The short-lived TMT signed a handful of blue-chip fighters who have since had their contracts transferred to Mayweather Promotions.
50 Cent received a promoter’s license from the state of New York earlier this year, and has applied for one in Nevada, according to ESPN.com.
Floyd Mayweather Jr., the seemingly estranged friend of the rap superstar, has said that he has no issues with 50 Cent, according to a recent interview conducted by Ben Thompson of fighthype.com. But there is no way to tell whether that interview took place before or after reports of Pacquiao and 50 Cent coming together had surfaced.
A few weeks ago, many members of the boxing media speculated that the formation of TMT Promotions could lead to a Mayweather vs. Pacquiao showdown next year, but with the collapse of TMT last week, those hopes seemed lost.
What this new union means for a potential Mayweather vs. Pacquiao super-fight is anybody's guess.