With July 14 quickly approaching, several doubts linger that the announced Manny Pacquiao vs. Lucas Matthysse bout may actually happen. Multiple outlets have indicated that a large amount of issues still remain unaddressed from Matthysse’s pay to event fees though reports from Pacquiao’s MP Promotions and Golden Boy Promotions (who promotes Matthysse) are assuring all parties the fight will happen as indicated.
Arnold Vegafria of MP Promotion’s said of the fight that “Everything is being arraigned and scheduled,” and that “the fight is on.”
One would hope so, especially as Matthysse has reportedly only received $500,000 of his $2.5 million purse as the fight only draws closer. Outside of a two city media tour, Pacquiao/Matthysse has been made seemingly under the cover of darkness with such limited details being given out besides the date of July 14 and that it would be hosted in Kuala Lumpur.
On paper, the bout is an intriguing match between an all-time great and a ferocious puncher, but it doesn’t take a nuclear powered telescope to see through this one. Pacquiao was upset last year against Jeff Horn in a fight whose debatable outcome didn’t change the fact that he took a horrible beating and is clearly on a sharp downturn in his legendary career. When offered a rematch with Horn, Pacquiao declined and went out on his own to make the Matthysse fight without the blessing of Top Rank.
Matthysse has certainly seen better days. After a stretch as one of the top contenders at Junior Welterweight where he took hellacious beatings at the hands of Danny Garcia, Ruslan Provodnikov, John Molina and Viktor Postol, Matthysse is also dangerously close to his sell by point. Now competing at Welterweight, Matthysse does not have the size to trouble Pacquiao like Horn did and is stylistically the right kind of opponent for a fading Pacquiao to shine against.
Should the fight implode, Top Rank’s Bob Arum has already made his intentions known to Golden Boy that he would want to stage a fight between Matthysse and WBO champion Terence Crawford for the Fall. Though Arum promotes Pacquiao, Pacquiao going off the reservation to make this fight isn’t going to make him too happy, especially if Pacquiao is to potentially face Vasyl Lomachenko next year in what could be the final super fight of Pacquiao’s career.
There’s not a lot of time left for this one, but if it does get off the ground, it’ll be available stateside via ESPN+. As far as the fighters go, both Pacquiao and Matthysse remain in camp for their bout, but more details will come to light as the fight approaches in the coming days.