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Manny Pacquiao: Arum Must Stop Mayweather Talk Till After PacMan Fights Bradley

Jessica Marie@ItsMsJisnerCorrespondent IIMay 16, 2012

BEVERLY HILLS, CA - FEBRUARY 21:  Manny Pacquiao (L) and Timothy Bradley pose fpr photographers at a press conference announcing their upcoming World Boxing Organization welterweight championship fight at The Beverly Hills Hotel on February 21, 2012 in Beverly Hills, California.  (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

Bob Arum has already admitted that Manny Pacquiao has been acting strange, even distracted, leading up to his June 9 fight against Timothy Bradley.

Why, then, does the promoter keep harping on a potential Floyd Mayweather vs. Pacquiao super-fight?

By now, everyone knows Mayweather vs. Pacquiao is the one fight every sports fan would love to see. The two greatest boxers, not to mention the two biggest draws, will establish once and for all who is the true champion. Mayweather either gets to keep his pristine record or will go out on the heels of the only crushing defeat of his career.

And maybe the super-fight will happen. But if Pacquiao doesn't get his head in the game before he faces Bradley on June 9—who is younger and, by all indications, more fired up—the super-fight may never come about.

Arum recently told ESPN.com he was concerned about changes in Pacquiao that have cropped up since his defeat of Juan Manuel Marquez in November. He's given up basketball, his casino and more of his former pleasures in the name of spending time with his family and reading the Bible daily (and, most recently, quoting from it in an effort to condemn President Barack Obama's endorsement of gay marriage).

Arum told ESPN.com:

You have to understand, since the last fight in November, he has become a totally different person. He's super religious. He does bible study every night. I get the impression that I'm promoting Rick Santorum, not Manny Pacquiao.

One would think that, given seemingly worrisome changes in his client's personality, Arum's foremost concern would be ensuring that Pacquiao is 100 percent prepared to beat Timothy Bradley, who is undefeated in 28 fights. Instead, though, he's still talking about Mayweather—about how badly Pacquiao would beat him, how overmatched Mayweather would be—when all indications from Mayweather's camp are that Arum is the one blocking the fight from happening. 

If Pacquiao doesn't beat Bradley, he'll never fight Mayweather. Arum should start focusing on the first order of business rather than jumping right over it to the grand finale before he officially kills any chance of it ever happening.

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