Despite declaring his second retirement in 2015, and then returning for a one off fight in 2017 against UFC Lightweight champion Conor McGregor, an Instagram video recently surfaced on Floyd ‘Money’ Mayweather’s Instagram account of him declaring his return to the ring against Phillipino fighter Manny Pacquiao. In the video, Pacquiao says “I have the belt”, to which Mayweather responds “I’m going to take it from you like I did before. We gonna take the belt. We gonna get the payday. And I don’t want no shoulder excuses.”
This is in reference to Pacquiao’s quite public comments that a contributing factor to him losing was a recurring shoulder injury that appeared in the fourth round, essentially rendering him ineffective. In the lead up to the fight, Pacquiao’s medical team had requested a legal injection of painkillers to the injury, which was denied by the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC). His team only found out after the event that the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) had actually approved the injection. Unsurprisingly, Mayweather (and his legions of fans) felt that this would have had little to no effect on the outcome of the match.
The rumours of a rematch, to nobody’s surprise, got fight fans foaming at the mouth, as the first bout was one of the most hotly anticipated fights in boxing history, as well as having the highest purse of any fight ever, at an unprecedented $410 million dollars. Both parties took a 60/40 split of the remaining total, with Mayweather taking $180m and Pacquiao taking $120m. After defeating two-time former welterweight world champion Andre Berton in September 2015, Mayweather announced his complete retirement once again at 49-0. The WBC declared his welterweight and super welterweight titles vacant two months later in November 2015, making his retirement from the sport official.
Despite his almost unmatched fight record, Mayweather is more often known for his ’Money’ nickname, with an estimated worth of $700 million dollars. After breaking with promoter Top Rank through a $750k break clause, he founded his own promotion company in 2007 under the name Mayweather Promotions, believing he could make more money working for himself rather than through a third party. This proved to the correct move, as his famed fights with McGregor and Pacqiao alone netted him a cool $380 million dollars. Not bad considering they make up just 4% of his professional fights.
Following in Mayweather’s footsteps, Pacqiao also broke his partnership with Top Rank promotions to form his own company, appropriately titled MP Promotions. Officially, Top Rank’s last fight with the WBA welterweight champ was with his fight with Jeff Horn in July 2, 2017, leaving him free to move forward on his own.
I, through MP Promotions, will be handling any and all negotiations for my next fight. Nobody is authorized to speak on my behalf. You know my number, call me. pic.twitter.com/b5H1BmM8CH
— Manny Pacquiao (@mannypacquiao) July 20, 2018
However, the move hasn’t been as well received as Mayweather’s. In an interview with The Manila Times, Manny’s ex-promoter at Top Rank Bob Arum said:
“It is very, very complicated in the sense you got to watch the money, and you got to watch what you are spending, how much you are going to take in and you cannot do it emotionally that’s why I’m afraid for Manny,”
“He acts more out of emotions than he (Mayweather) does you know, which what a bookkeeper would do to look at the money that’s coming in. I don’t know how much money he is going to make from this fight. I hope he is satisfied, but it is very, very difficult to be a fighter whilst being your own promoter.”
Pacquiao’s goal with MP Promotions, seems to come from a less financially driven position than Mayweather’s, with plans to give back to his home continent of Asia, where little to no big money fights take place, compared with the USA that has the monopoly on the fight game. One of his first fights, the Fight of Champions against Argentinian Lucas Matthysse, was held in the Axiata Arena, Kuala Lumpur, with Pacquiao donating the boxing equipment used in all bouts back to the City.
With both men throwing their weight in not just the ring, but also the promotional arena, the paperwork behind a rematch looks to be more intense than the fight itself. However, if Mayweather’s comments are anything to go by, it looks like this fight is moving forward whether or not the fans ask for it.
What are your thoughts on the rematch? Is it good for the sport? Will it simply be a cash grab? Let us know in the comments.
This article was put together by online betting Betfair