Denzil Stone – Atlantic City
The accomplishments that welterweight kings Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather Jr have already accomplished renders a meeting between the two pound-for-pound rivals unnecessary, according to the fighters, who both recently claimed they do not need each other. Between them they hold 50 percent of the alphabet world championship at 147lbs and a showdown would likely represent the most lucrative in the sport’s history.
One is a vicious volume-puncher who has collected major honours in eight separate weight classes… from flyweight to super welterweight, Pacquiao has picked off a series of the sport’s most high profile names, has become a marquee prizefighter and an undoubted magnet for titles.
If his opponents are not defensively adept then they end up with severe facial damage like Miguel Cotto, or worse; Antonio Margarito, who took almost nine months for his fractured orbital bone and consequent surgeries to return to a clean bill of health.
The other is the finest defensive boxer of his generation… from super featherweight to welterweight, Floyd Jr (42-0-0, 26ko) has maintained a punches landed percentage of 45-50 yet it is as a welter where his ability to block and parry incoming punches has come to the fore as he reduces opponents to a mere 15 percent success rate.
He has never been beaten up, never lost and rarely leaves a fight with as much as a scratch on his face. He is a five division champion and there are none who can pull a crowd, divide that crowd and still get paid like he does.
There has been an unrelenting clamouring from fight fans for the paths of these two prizefighters to intertwine… there have oft been negotiations, but just as often as they begin, they have fallen through. Should a bout be booked, then the winner would punctuate an already formidable legacy, yet neither fighter – if their most recent statements are to believed – is too fussed should a deal be reached.
“I don’t need Pacquiao,” Mayweather Jr proclaimed to the media following his fourth round knockout over Victor Ortiz. “With or without Pacquiao, every time Floyd Mayweather goes out there, he’s going to make over $70 million. I don’t need him. Where was Pacquiao in 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001 when I was dominating the game? He never asked me [for a fight] when I was in my twenties or when I was in my teens.”
Upon hearing Floyd’s reaction to a super fight in 2012, Pacquiao (53-3-2, 38ko) said, according to abs-cbnNEWS.com: “I do not need him either.”
He added: “With us and what we have shown that we accomplished in boxing, I am also satisfied my career. Although we do not fight, I have no problem.”
Pacquiao has, this week, begun his training camp in Beguio City, Philippines, for his third fight with Juan Manuel Marquez on November 12 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena, Las Vegas.