Manny Pacquiao Vs Paulie Malignaggi On March 13: It Just Might Happen...

Brian O. Blake@@BrianOBlakeCorrespondent IDecember 26, 2009

LAS VEGAS - NOVEMBER 22:  Paulie Malignaggi looks on during the news conference after losing to Ricky Hatton of England by 11th round TKO in their light-welterweight fight at the MGM Grand Garden Arena November 22, 2008 in Las Vegas, Nevada.  (Photo by John Gichigi/Getty Images)
John Gichigi/Getty Images

The latest reports on the Mayweather vs. Pacquiao saga are now, well, Mayweather-less.

The proposed bout between the top two pound for pound pugilists in the world looks to be officially off due to issues surrounding blood drawn drug testing leading up to the bout.

What I had hoped would turn out to be a minor issue that would be resolved quickly by all parties involved has now escalated into a bitter topic that has the Filipino sensation ready to hit Floyd Mayweather with a defamation lawsuit over his comments which hint at Pacquiao benefiting from performance-enhancing drugs.

Everybody from casual fans of the sweet science to fighters themselves have been eagerly anticipating these two locking horns in the squared circle. As news spread that the fight was potentially falling apart a wave of disappointment fell over everyone.

Well, almost everyone.

Somewhere in Brooklyn, Paulie "Magic Man" Malignaggi is grinning from ear to ear as he looks to be the benefactor in the wake of the Mayweather fallout.

Dan Rafael of has reported that Bob Arum has elected to keep the March 13 with our without Floyd Mayweather, Jr. and has spoken to Lou DiBella, of DiBella Entertainment, who promotes Malignaggi.

Ironically, Malignaggi has been vocal in accusing Pacquiao of using performance-enhancing substances.

As of now, it looks like Floyd is out for the March bout and Malignaggi is in. But with as much money is on the table for the top two in the sport I'd be very surprised if we didn't see them in the ring together by September 2010 at the latest.

As always, more to follow as it continues to develop.

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