Fan favorite and international boxing sensation Manny Pacquiao has made the decision to fight once again in September 2013, according to Eddie Alinea of The Manila Standard Today. The potential fight would come less than a year after his brutal December 2012 knockout loss to longtime foe Juan Manuel Marquez.
Instead of rushing back for an April bout that could possibly put his long-term health at risk, the 34-year-old will wait until later in the year before stepping in the ring again. Pacquiao told Alinea about his view of the speculation surrounding him and what he wants the fans to know:
Tell them to be patient. Bob Arum and myself have been talking and will continue talking. What is definite is they’ll see me fight again come September. Not April nor immediately after that as speculations are going. Tell the public that it won’t be long before I make them happy again when I fight. Tell them, too, that I appreciate very much their concern over my well-being when I lost by KO to Marquez and during the debate whether to fight in April. I treasure their concern and prayers that I recover quickly from my knockout loss. I want everyone to know that I am well and fully recovered. Thank you very much for everyone’s prayers.
It’s clear that Pacquiao has heard all the rumors about him over the last four months, and judging from his comments, they have sparked something inside the legendary fighter.
Not only is Pac-Man fighting the doubts that creep into boxers' heads after they are knocked out, but he is also dealing with the fact that a large group of fans have given up on him.
While the loss to Marquez was undoubtedly the worst of Pacquiao's career, it could be the wake-up call the veteran needed. Pac-Man hasn’t fought with any sense of desperation for well over a year, and the losses to Timothy Bradley and Marquez prove it is time for a mental change.
If Pacquiao isn’t going to retire, he must focus solely on boxing for the next five months to ensure that the knockout he suffered in December never happens again.
Another brutal finish like that would likely result in an abrupt end to his career.
As far as whom Pacquiao would face in September, the talk is that it will likely be Marquez once again.
Both Pacquiao and Marquez know their biggest money-fight would be against each other. Marquez’s promoter Fernando Beltran told Boxing Scene that "putting Marquez and Pacquiao together is the only combination that produces an attractive financial figure for Juan Manuel," so there is a good chance that the fifth chapter of this storied battle will happen in September.
After the way the last fight ended, another potential bout would be a cash cow for all parties involved.