LAS VEGAS - After a tougher than it should have been 10 round majority decision over Ramon Montano, 15-5-2 (1), on the undercard of Pacquiao-Marquez II, an affable David Diaz addressed the assembled media while they waited for the principals to get cuts attended to.
Diaz, 33-1-1 (17), has been mentioned by promoter Top Rank as Pacquiao’s most likely next opponent, with a target date of June 28th in Vegas. Pacquiao would be moving up to challenge for Diaz’s WBC lightweight laurels.
The 31-year old Diaz didn’t display any disappointment in his 10 round spotlight appearance against the sturdy Montano, when a more spectacular showing might have enhanced his marketability with the Pac Man money machine.
“Montano took a lot of punches and made it a great fight,” said Diaz, “I’m happy with the outcome.”
Somebody asked who Diaz felt won the main event.
“Obviously it was a close fight, said Diaz, “I think they got it right.” Diaz took some ribbing for a clear bias he acknowledged with a smile.
When talk turned to the opportunity of facing the winner Pacquiao, you could see the hope weigh on Diaz and light him up at the same time.
“It would be awesome,” mused Diaz. “Bob Arum’s right here so I hope he can make it happen. I’ve been waiting for a big fight like this.”
“My fight with (Erik) Morales was big for me because it was in my hometown, But this fight would be a great fight because this is a guy who’s in his prime still, a guy who throws a lot of punches and hits hard.”
“I honestly, honestly think that my fight with Pacquiao would be a great fight for everyone to see, because we’re going to go at it. Obviously I’m not a good boxer that’s going to move around jabbing and stuff.”
“I’m gonna come forward and fight Manny. I think the public will get their money’s worth.”
The public is one thing. Promoters are another.
That tentative plan has been met with varied responses, most notably by Golden Boy honcho Richard Schaeffer, who got into an extended verbal spat with co-promoter Arum about signing an immediate Pacquiao-Marquez III as opposed to Arum’s preference for letting a third tilt simmer a while.
“I know Bob is trying to sell Pacquiao-Diaz, but I’m sure there’s no fight fan out there who would not rather see a (Pacquiao-Marquez) rematch,” said Schaeffer, who then looked toward Pacquiao’s team and said he’d put six million smackers on the table immediately.
Money talks, but the on again off again feud between Golden Boy and Top Rank might hinder business for a spell.
It could be a case of real dukeout land justice for a hard working professional like Diaz to find himself in a wonderland like Macau or Mandalay Bay with a big brass ring new world before him.
Diaz seems like the type to make the most of the opportunity, but if he fights like he did against Montano, barring serious intangible weight factors, it would probably just be a matter of how long it took Pacquiao to finish him off.
It’s not really a question of whether Diaz, like many others, deserves the chance. It’s just a question of whether he gets it.
“I’m a practical guy just trying to get the great fight out there,” reflected Diaz, who won some support with his earnest manner. “And De La Hoya or Mayweather money obviously.”
“Share the wealth,” offered Diaz. “Just give me a chance I’ll please you guys. Guaranteed.”
Who will win #HOPKINSKOVALEV