Boxing promoter Bob Arum never shies away from giving his opinion.
That much was evident in the wee hours of Sunday morning, when the Top Rank CEO gave his thoughts on a potential matchup between his client, Manny Pacquiao (56-5-2, 38 KOs), and undefeated champion Floyd Mayweather Jr (45-0-0, 26 KOs).
Arum was not satisfied with Pacquiao’s revenge victory over Timothy Bradley and isn't pleased with the state of boxing. He also discussed a potential Mayweather vs. Pacquiao showdown.
According to Sports Illustrated's Chris Mannix, Arum started by noting the MGM’s decision to put up signs promoting Mayweather’s bout with Marcos Maidana (35-3-0, 31 KOs) on May 3:
Bob Arum talking to the media. He is again bashing the MGM and the Mayweather signs they put up. Amazing.— Chris Mannix (@ChrisMannixSI) April 13, 2014
The 82-year-old promoter isn’t known for his filter, which was evident when he said the signs were encouraging fans to waste money on “crap”:
Arum says Mayweather-Maidana is "encouraging the public to spend money on absolute crap."— Chris Mannix (@ChrisMannixSI) April 13, 2014
Arum hoped the media would bash Mayweather’s clash with Maidana:
Arum continuing to lecture media about criticizing Mayweather-Maidana. Says it's the media's obligation to call it a crappy fight.— Chris Mannix (@ChrisMannixSI) April 13, 2014
He did that to set up arguably the most interesting point of his post-fight comments. Arum believes people should boycott the May 3 bout if they have any interest in seeing Pac-Man and Money step into the ring:
Arum: "The only people who can make Floyd fight Manny is the public…by boycotting the fight on May 3rd." This is an epic Arum rant.— Chris Mannix (@ChrisMannixSI) April 13, 2014
Arum also claimed he is standing by to negotiate the details for this possible superfight between the two biggest stars in the sport:
Arum says he is ready "anytime" to negotiate a Pacquiao-Mayweather fight.— Chris Mannix (@ChrisMannixSI) April 13, 2014
The promoter wound down with a call to action, urging Mayweather to admit his upcoming fight is nothing more than a tuneup and sign on to battle Pac-Man this coming fall:
Arum says instead of Maidana, Mayweather should say he is fighting a tuneup fight and sign to fight @MannyPacquiao in the fall.— Chris Mannix (@ChrisMannixSI) April 13, 2014
While Arum says he is willing to work out the details to get the two marquee pugilists in the squared circle, the odds of it happening are slim.
According to the Jeff Powell of the Daily Mail, Pacquiao’s trainer, Freddie Roach, believes Mayweather will not agree to any sort of fight where his undefeated record would truly be on the line:
Floyd's main concern has become keeping that 0 (for zero losses) on his record. I don't see him taking any real risk of losing that before the end of next year, when he says he's retiring. 'It's not that he's afraid of Manny. No fighters are scared of anybody in the world. It's just that he believes if he goes out undefeated he will be seen as better than greats like Sugar Ray Robinson, who had losses on their records.
Will Mayweather vs. Pacquiao happen?
Roach went on to note that there was a point about two years ago where it looked like Top Rank and Golden Boy, the company that represents Mayweather’s boxing interests, would actually strike a deal, but things quickly went south.
However, there is still a bit of time to potentially iron out the details of this superfight.
Arum clued Sports Illustrated's Chris Mannix in on a two-year contract extension he is working on with Pac-Man, while many, including Roach, believe Mayweather will try to match and possibly even surpass Hall of Famer Rocky Marciano’s 49-0 record before he retires.
Bob Arum tells SI that he is close to finalizing a two-year contract extension with @MannyPacquiao that will run through 2016— Chris Mannix (@ChrisMannixSI) April 13, 2014
Arum is trying to give the fans the matchup they have been clamoring for.
Perhaps we will have a better idea of where Pacquiao and Mayweather stand after the Maidana fight. But Pac-Man is 35 years old, and Mayweather is 37, so time is running out.