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The fight the boxing world has been waiting for: Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather Jr. is slowly but surely becoming a reality.
According to a report on ESPN.com early Wednesday, negotiations crested Tuesday, with the two sides- Golden Boy Promotions (which represents Mayweather) and Bob Arum (representing Pacquiao)- sitting down and hashing out details of the fight. Mayweather (40-0, 25 KO’s) agreed late Tuesday to fight as a 147 lb. welterweight, with the match taking place either March 13 or May 1.
With Mayweather coming to terms, Arum has now flown to the Philippines to discuss details with Pacquaio (50-3-2, 28 KO’s). Arum is expected back in the United States next Monday.
A site for the fight has yet to be determined. Las Vegas, which has hosted many of each fighter’s top bouts is a logical choice, with the new Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, TX and the Superdome in New Orleans also possibilities.
Negotiations for the fight began just after Pacquiao’s win over Miguel Cotto November 14, in which Pacquiao claimed Cotto’s welterweight title. It was Pacquiao’s seventh title in a record seven weight classes. Mayweather had a relatively easy tune-up of his own, coming out of retirement in September to beat Juan Manuel Marquez.
A fight between the two would be expected to shatter all Pay-Per-View purchase records. The previous high came in 2007 when there were 2.44 million buys of Mayweather’s bout with Oscar De La Hoya.
Also, in an intriguing plot twist, the March 13th date was up in the air, because HBO (who’d be televising the fight along with Pay-Per-View), already had a Roy Jones Jr. vs. Bernard Hopkins card set for that date. The fight hinged on Jones being able to win a fight Wednesday in Australia, which he subsequently lost with a 1st round KO to Danny Green. It is assumed that with the loss by Jones, the date is now open. May 1st had also come under some question, because Pacquiao is running for a congressional seat in the Filipino government, with the date of the election May 10. This will likely no longer be an issue.
Should there be problems in negotiations, Arum has suggested that Pacquiao’s next fight may be against junior middleweight title holder Yuri Foreman. There is also talk of Mayweather traveling to England to take on Matthew Hatton, whose brother Mayweather defeated in late 2007.
Stay tuned to BetUS.com for continuing news, as more details continue to emerge.