You shouldn't use a permanent marker to pencil in the date, it'd be wiser to use pencil, because these things can change on a dime. But it's looking like March 13 is a go for the Manny Pacquiao-Floyd Mayweather megafight.
TSS spoke to multiple sources with knowledge of the proposed event, and all are feeling confident that both Team Mayweather and Team Pacquiao, and promoter Bob Arum are going to be able to hash out a deal.
Two snafus that worried folks, that Mayweather might balk, and ask for too much of the pie, and that Manny's re-entry into the Filipino political scene might put off the clash indefinitely, seem to be surmountable hurdles.
The soon to be 31-year-old Pacman (50-3-2, with 38 knockouts) is running for a congressional seat, and the election is May 10, so Arum, who flew to the Philippines with Mayweather's okay in principle to make the deal, wanted to hammer out an early spring battle. That wouldn't be optimal for Team Pacquiao in terms of getting ready, considering he suffered a busted right eardrum in his Nov. 14 fight with Miguel Cotto (TKO12 win), and his trainer Freddie Roach wants more time for him to heal. But the money is too good to pass up.
Each fighter, TSS was told, stands to make $40 million guaranteed, a 50-50 split. You'll recall that the purse split has been a point of contention between these two going back to last year, when posturing began for the showdown between the two pugilists jockeying for the top spot as the pound for pound best. Neither man wanted to get the short straw, and it looks like that sticking point could be smoothed out by Arum, who might pony up some extra dough to the 32-year-old Mayweather (40-0, 25 knockouts).
So far, no site has been chose to stage the event, though it looks like Las Vegas has the inside track. Arum is slated to stick around the Philippines for a week or so, or presumably, until the deal is done.
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