Archive for January, 2012

13
Jan
12

Boxer Pacquiao calls Mayweather’s bluff

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MANILA, Phillipines, January 12 – Manny Pacquiao on Thursday accepted US rival Floyd Mayweather’s provocative challenge for a showdown of the world’s top pound-for-pound boxers, though sticking points to the mega fight remain.

The unbeaten Mayweather dared the Philippine icon this week on Twitter to “Step up Punk”, attempting to entice Pacquiao into a May 5 bout in Las Vegas, a fight that boxing fans have wanted to see for years.

Mayweather and Pacquiao, 33, previously saw a fight derailed by the US fighter’s demands about blood testing, with both boxers accusing the other of running scared.

“I want to fight him. This is the fight the world wants,” Pacquiao declared at a news conference in the Philippines with his US promoter Bob Arum.

Pacquiao, 54-3 with two draws and 38 knockouts, said if the 34-year-old Mayweather, 42-0 with 26 knockouts, can find a promoter who would give him a guaranteed purse, the fight would be on.

Arum said he favours a showdown in late May and previously told the Los Angeles Times he could secure $40 million more with the construction of a temporary venue in Las Vegas before more than twice as many spectators.

“Mayweather wants a guaranteed purse so what he has to do is get a promoter who can give him the guarantee,” Pacquiao said. “I don’t have problems getting a guarantee because I have a promoter who will give me my guaranteed purse.”

“If he gets a guarantee, then we are going to share the revenue on a 50-50 basis,” Pacquiao added, referring to the money raised from pay-per-view television, gate and broadcast rights.

Arum added: “There is no problem on our part — the problem is on Mayweather’s.

“Mayweather needs somebody on his side that’s going to guarantee his purse. Mayweather has nobody on his side and GBP (Oscar de la Hoya’s Golden Boy Promotions) is not going to guarantee his purse.”

Arum insisted that if there was to be no fight in late May against the American then he would move forward with a Pacquiao clash on June 9 against someone else.

He listed a re-match against Mexico’s Juan Manuel Marquez or Puerto Rican southpaw Miguel Cotto, as well as Americans Tim Bradley and Lamont Peterson, as potential alternatives.

Arum had originally said that Mayweather was not on Pacquiao’s hit-list.

Pacquiao, a southpaw, won a majority decision over Marquez in November to keep his World Boxing Organisation welterweight title.

Mayweather, who turns 35 next month, won the World Boxing Council welterweight title with a fourth-round knockout of compatriot Victor Ortiz.

But he is currently awaiting the June 1 start of a 90-day jail sentence on domestic violence charges, further complicating things.

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13
Jan
12

Mayweather calls out Pacquiao for May

Floyd Mayweather Jr. could not be any clearer about the opponent he wants to fight on May 5 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.

Mayweather wants Manny Pacquiao — at least, if you are to believe his tweets on Tuesday afternoon.

Several hours after tweeting a photo of a betting slip from a Las Vegas casino for a $400,000 win on Monday night’s Allstate BCS Championship Game, Mayweather sent out two tweets calling out and antagonizing Pacquiao.

 

Mayweather Manny Pacquiao I’m calling you out let’s fight May 5th and give the world what they want to see.

— Floyd Mayweather Jr., on Twitter

 

“Manny Pacquiao I’m calling you out let’s fight May 5th and give the world what they want to see,” read Mayweather’s first tweet.

One minute later, Mayweather followed with this: “My Jail Sentence was pushed back because the date was locked in. Step up Punk.”

Pacquiao’s promoter, Top Rank’s Bob Arum, told The Los Angeles Times that Pacquiao will fight Mayweather, but not on May 5.

“June 9 is perfect,” Arum told The Times from The Philippines where he is meeting with Pacquiao to talk about his next opponent. “May 5 is out, that’s impossible.”

Mayweather’s upcoming jail sentence however, complicates the issue.

Mayweather was due to report to the Clark County Detention Center in Las Vegas last Friday to begin an 87-day sentence. He pleaded guilty to a reduced battery domestic violence charge and no contest to two harassment charges, stemming from a hair-pulling, punching and arm-twisting argument with his ex-girlfriend in front of two of their children.

However, Mayweather’s attorney successfully argued that the sentence should be delayed until June 1 so he could fulfill a contractual obligation for a fight at the MGM Grand, which he estimated would pour more than $100 million into the ailing Las Vegas economy.

Arum told The Times that he would be “willing to chip in for lawyers’ fees” to get Mayweather’s report date moved to allow the fight to happen on June 9.

Leonard Ellerbe, one of Mayweather’s advisers, told ESPN.com that Mayweather was serious about calling out Pacquiao.

“You heard him,” Ellerbe said, noting that Mayweather is personally responsible for the content of the tweets sent from his verified account.

So Mayweather is now free until June 1 and intends to fight May 5. However, he is without a dance partner.

 

Rafael’s boxing blog

Rafael Get the latest scoop and analysis on the world of boxing from ESPN.com’s Dan Rafael in his blog.

 

The two names most often mentioned as potential opponents are junior middleweight titlist Saul “Canelo” Alvarez — who is one division above Mayweather, the welterweight titlist — and lightweight Robert Guerrero, who is two divisions below.

Alvarez and Guerrero are being named as likely opponents because they would be fairly easy deals to make. They are both promoted by Golden Boy, which has served as Mayweather’s de facto promoter in recent years, promoting his last five bouts even though they do not have a formal promotional contract.

However, a fight between Mayweather and fellow welterweight champion and pound-for-pound star Pacquiao looms as the biggest fight in the sport — and likely the richest fight in boxing history. There seems to be no legitimate impediment to making the match for May 5, Arum has not seemed interested previously.

When Mayweather was supposed to go to jail last week, Arum talked about Pacquiao fighting on May 5 to take the spot of Mayweather. The next day, when Mayweather’s sentence was delayed, Arum said Pacquiao would probably have to fight in June, blaming that on a cut Pacquiao suffered in his November majority decision win against Juan Manuel Marquez as the reason — even though a cut taking more than six months to heal is unheard of.

Arum’s list of possible opponents for Pacquiao did not include Mayweather. Rather, it includes a rematch with junior middleweight titlist Miguel Cotto, whom Pacquiao stopped in the 12th round of a 2009 welterweight title bout; Marquez, for a fourth time; or a fight with junior welterweight titleholders Lamont Peterson or Timothy Bradley Jr.

After Mayweather’s sentence was delayed, Arum said he was not interested in talking to Pacquiao about fighting Mayweather in May.

“We’re fighting in June, one of the four guys,” Arum told ESPN.com last week. “My mission is to go over to the Philippines and talk about these four guys. If Manny feels he wants to go in May, he will tell me. I want to make sure Manny’s cuts are healed. We won’t fall under this kind of pressure. June is much more likely for Manny’s fight, not May.”

Arum also said he was concerned that Mayweather might not be licensed by the Nevada State Athletic Commission with a conviction hanging over his head and jail time slated for June.

“I don’t even know if Mayweather will be licensed before he serves his time,” Arum said.

Although Mayweather is likely to be ordered to a hearing before the commission because of his conviction before it will license him for a May 5 fight, it is likely the commission will license him. After all, the judge in Mayweather’s criminal case was swayed by the economic impact of a Mayweather fight on the Las Vegas economy as one of the reasons for the delay. It is hard to imagine the commission, all political appointees, denying Mayweather a license for a fight that would bring the local economy millions of dollars.

Dan Rafael is the boxing writer for ESPN.com. Follow him on Twitter.

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12
Jan
12

‘Mystery man’ is IBF official, Schaefer calls for re-match or for fight to be declared a no-contest

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Amir Khan: lost his titles on a controversial points decision…

Amir Khan’s promoters Golden Boy have revealed that the ‘mystery man’ spotted ringside during his controversial defeat to Lamont Peterson last month is an IBF official.

Confusion has surrounded the identity of the man, whom video footage shows talking to WBA fight supervisor Michael Welsh as he appears to point out something on a scorecard.

Khan lost his IBF and WBA light-welterweight titles to Peterson on points last month in Washington DC but is appealing against the decision.

On Thursday he highlighted photos and video footage showing the presence of a man appearing to interfere with the WBA’s supervisor and handling the scorecards.

The World Boxing Association announced on Friday that they do not know the identity of the man, prompting the organisation’s vice-president to call for a re-match.

But Golden Boy chief executive Richard Shaefer told Sky Sports News the man is an IBF official – although he was not assigned to the Khan-Peterson fight which was sanctioned by both governing bodies.

Shocking

Shaefer has called for an immediate re-match or for the fight to be declared a no-contest.

Schaefer refused to name the man, saying he had been advised not to do so by lawyers, but claimed the footage was “astonishing and shocking”.

The Golden Boy chief executive said the man was an IBF official, but not one assigned to the fight and claimed he should not have been ringside.

“The right thing to do is declare a no-contest. There’s enough controversy to warrant a no-contest decision,” he said.

“In any case, both governing bodies should order a re-match and the fighters can settle things in the ring.”

It has also been claimed the man has been pictured celebrating with the Peterson camp after the fight, something Schaefer described as “unusual” and leaves “question marks”.

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12
Jan
12

Manny Pacquiao Vs Floyd Mayweather Jr. Fight is on!

I’m ready to put my belt up. What about you Manny Pacquiao? Let’s make history.

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11
Jan
12

Manny Pacquiao to try to force Mayweather fight: I want Floyd next

Top Rank Boxing promoter Bob Arum’s alleged unwillingness to pit his welterweight attraction Manny Pacquiao, against undefeated pay-per-view sensation Floyd Mayweather, may be negated by the Filipino fighter himself, as Pacquiao has told the press that his American rival is his most desired opponent for his next pugilistic outing. Manny added that he and Arum are due to meet as early as tomorrow, Tuesday, to discuss his summer fight.

Pacquiao and the band-aid covering a 28-stitch cut

“I’ve said this over and over before and I’m saying this again,I want Floyd Mayweather Jr to be my next opponent and I haven’t changed my choice despite recent developments,” said Pacquiao, as quoted by Phil Boxing.

A showdown between Pacquiao (54-3-2, 38ko) and Mayweather (42-0-0, 26ko) would not only represent a welterweight unification contest for the WBO and WBC world titles, it would also decide whom the true pound-for-pound best prizefighter currently is.

The prospective bout is expected to far surpass the records for gate receipts and PPV purchases and, as such, Arum wants to maximise earnings for his fighter as much as possible.

So much so, that the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, which seats 18,000, is deemed to be too small a stage and the experienced promoter, instead, would favour the construction of a temporary stadium to be built on the city’s famous strip.

Mayweather had already reserved the date of May 5 to box at the MGM Grand, yet his own participation was jeopardised due to an imminent 87-day imprisonment for domestic violence charges, however, Mayweather’s lawyer was successful in having the sentence postponed due to the obligation to fight.

The May date was deemed too early by Arum, who – following consultation with a plastic surgeon – claimed Pacquiao would need further time to recover from a 28-stitch cut sustained during his most recent clash with proud Mexican warrior Juan Manuel Marquez.

Arum was believed to favour the four options of Top Rank super lightweight Timothy Bradley, three division world champion Miguel Cotto who is expected to continue being represented by Top Rank on a fight by fight basis, Marquez who has boxed Pacman three times and feels he deserved victory in each and every contest and, finally, Lamont Peterson – the unified champion of the WBA/IBF titles at 140lbs.

The Mayweather option has not been completely discarded by Arum, as he reportedly would consider aligning Pac with Floyd if the date was pushed to the end of May or even in June, however, Mayweather is expected to turn himself in to the prison authorities by June 1.

“I am meeting with my promoter, Bob Arum on Tuesday and I will insist that the fight with Mayweather be given the preference than the four others in the list I will fight next,” concluded Pacquiao.

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11
Jan
12

Floyd Mayweather officially calls out Manny Pacquiao: Step up punk

Floyd Mayweather Jr has laid down the gauntlet. The undefeated 34-year-old has challenged welterweight rival Manny Pacquiao to follow through with his recent statements and agree to a fight later this year, on the date – May 5 – and venue – MGM Grand Garden Arena, Las Vegas – that had already been reserved by Mayweather late last year. “Step up punk,” Floyd intonated on his social media networks earlier today, Tuesday.

A Mayweather v Pacquiao match-up would be a tri-belt bout. Credit: Stacey Verbeek – Maple Avenue Boxing Gym, Dallas

The boxing and wider sporting world has demanded a showdown between prizefighting’s two most notable names for years and is one Mayweather (42-0-0, 26ko) and his camp have publicly been pursuing since Floyd’s first gear, fourth round dismissal of former WBC welterweight world champion Victor Ortiz, in September, 2011.

Legal troubles had threatened the lucrative fisticuffs from happening this year as the libel case leveled against Floyd, by Manny, for defaming Pacquiao’s character by insinuating the foundations of the Filipino’s success had been down to ‘power pellets’ (performance enhancing drugs), combined with Mayweather’s mounting domestic violence charge that had culminated with an 87-day imprisonment, appeared to push a contest back that had already twice failed at the negotiation table.

However, Mayweather’s lawyer, just last week, had succeeded in delaying his client’s jail sentence until June so that Floyd could honour his obligation to fight in May.

All he needs is a dance partner.

Robert Guerrero has been lobbying for a shot at the fight game’s biggest draw and it was rumoured over the weekend that the California-resident had the edge over his closest rival for Cinco de Mayo with Mayweather – Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez.

Both fighters, though, may have to wait. Mayweather, as per his latest comments, appears to have only one candidate in mind.

“Manny Pacquiao I’m calling you out; let’s fight [on] May 5th and give the world what they want to see,” said the current incumbent of the WBC championship at 147lbs.

Pacquiao (54-3-2, 38ko), who holds the WBO title, has entered discussions with his promoter Bob Arum of Top Rank Boxing over whom he most wants to fight next. There had been four candidates to be presented to him: Miguel Cotto, Juan Manuel Marquez, Timothy Bradley or Lamont Peterson, yet Pacquiao claimed yesterday that he would reject them all in order to accommodate a match-up with Mayweather.

“My jail sentence was pushed back because the date was locked in,” continued Mayweather, before sending a direct message to Pacman: “Step up punk.”

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11
Jan
12

Muhammad Ali Home from Hospital after Losing Consciousness

December 2, 2011

*Muhammad Ali is back home and recuperating after he was hospitalized last month in Arizona, the Louisville Courier-Journal reports.

The paper spoke with Ali’s close friend and Louisville radio personality John Ramsey, after Ramsey told Star magazine that the boxing icon had been hospitalized “after slipping out of consciousness at his Phoenix-area home.”

Ramsey said he spoke by telephone with Ali’s wife, Lonnie, last night and was told Ali is “home and well, for a person who has had Parkison’s since the 1980s. He may not be going in the direction you or I like, but no one is on alert. That’s the truth.”

Ramsey said the Alis still plan to be in Louisville in mid-January for a celebration of the three-time heavyweight champion’s 70th birthday, Jan. 19.

Ramsey said he didn’t have any details of Ali’s hospital treatment but that he believed, “I don’t think he stayed very long,” Ramsey said.

The Star reported that it had been told by multiple sources that Ali was rushed from the couple’s home in Paradise Valley to the Scottsdale Healthcare Osborn Medical Center on Nov. 19. The Star also said it confirmed a 911 call from the residence, and that Ali was unconscious at the time.

The Star quoted Alan Laitsich, a spokesperson for Paradise Valley Police, saying: “The victim started to pass out in the car and when they got him into the house he fell unconscious.”

The magazine said it didn’t have details of Ali’s treatment or his length of stay at the hospital.

The Nov. 19 rush to the hospital came just five days after Ali attended the funeral of his greatest rival, Joe Frazier. Another boxer who fought Ali for the heavyweight title, Ron Lyle, died Saturday at the age of 70.

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