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The Final Word: Will Pacquiao Fight Mayweather?

The Final Word: Will Pacquiao Fight Mayweather?

08/09/2010

Tonight, as is their habit, the big and small hand on the clock came together over the "12," overlapping in simultaneous salutation to a new day. But the hands which always go round and round, no matter the occasion, this time--pardon the pun--signaled more than the beginning of Saturday, July 17. They also announced to an eagerly waiting world that the offer Manny "Pacman" Pacquiao extended to Floyd "Money" Mayweather Jr. to fight was, well, not going to happen... for now. After all, from Pacman's perspective, the offer still stands.

This year or next, the seven-time world champ is ready to take on Mayweather in what will be the biggest boxing match in a generation. In the meantime, however, Pacquiao, the welterweight title-holder, is moving on to negotiations with whomever his next challenger will be. And here's the deal: It could still be Mayweather.

According to Top Rank head Bob Arum, as the negotiations shift officially from Mayweather to other fighters, including Miguel Cotto and Antonio Margarito, Arum and Pacquiao will still keep the books open for Mayweather if he decides he wants the fight this year.

"Does that mean that the Mayweather fight is dead?" Arum asked rhetorically during a conference call broadcast live on TRLivestream.com. No: "It's dead when we conclude a deal with an opponent for Manny's fight in November."

Why? Because then there will be a contract between the pound-for-pound king and his next challenger. But that doesn't end the possibility of a Pacquiao-Mayweather fight. Indeed, it means the Mayweather fight could happen next year.

Arum went on to say that he was "sure [Mayweather] has some valid reason" for not agreeing to fight Pacquiao at this point. "I don't think any of you guys should be too harsh on Floyd," he added.

"There would be nothing opposed to getting together and getting the fight," Arum continued in regard to making Pacquiao-Mayweather at a later date. "So that's our position."

Have your say on whom Pacquiao will face in the fall by voting in our online poll here (scroll down).

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