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Errol Spence Won't Fight Manny Pacquiao; Says Larry Holmes 'F--ked' Up Muhammad Ali

Tyler Conway@@jtylerconwayFeatured Columnist IVDecember 19, 2022

ARLINGTON, TX - APRIL 16:  Errol Spence Jr. enters the ring against Yordenis Ugas at AT&T Stadium on April 16, 2022 in Arlington, Texas.  (Photo by Cooper Neill/Getty Images)
Cooper Neill/Getty Images

Errol Spence has no interest in fighting Manny Pacquiao as the all-time great considers a boxing comeback.

"I wouldn't fight him. Larry Holmes is one of the greatest heavyweights. He doesn't get the respect [he deserves]. How he beat Muhammad Aliβ€”he f--ked him up. I think it's because of that," Spence said Monday, per Michael Benson of TalkSPORT.

Spence was originally supposed to fight Pacquiao in August 2021 but had to pull out due to a retinal tear. Pacquiao would instead fight Yordenis Ugas, losing via unanimous decision and announcing his retirement after the bout.

The 44-year-old defeated DK Yoo via unanimous decision in an exhibition earlier this month in his return to the ring. He said he would come out of retirement for matches against Spence or Terrence Crawford.

"Of course I can fight Terrence Crawford or [Errol] Spence. I'm eager to fight with them to test them, to see if they're really a champion," Pacquaio told FightHype. "I've been fighting a lot of boxers at 147, 140, 135, I've been fighting one of the greatest boxers in the world. So, I want to test them to fight with me."

Pacquiao also said he would fight Conor McGregor of Floyd Mayweather if an opportunity presented itself.

Spence clearly has no interest in fighting a diminished Pacquiao, citing Holmes' 1980 pummeling of Ali. Holmes is the only boxer to defeat Ali via stoppage and was the second-to-last fight of Ali's career.

Many felt Ali never should have been allowed in the ring with Holmes in the first place given his declining health at the time.