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Hatton & Pacquiao In Negotiations?

Manny Pacquiao Ricky HattonBy Jason Kim: According to the latest boxing news gossip, lightweight Manny Pacquiao and Ricky Hatton are reportedly in negotiations for a fight in 2009, which will possibly take place on either May 2nd or the 9th. Promoter Bob Arum is in talks with Hatton’s management. If nothing gets in the way of this fight, like Floyd Mayweather Jr. coming out of retirement, then it will likely be Hatton vs. Pacquiao early next year.

However, if Mayweather Jr., who is rumored to be working out already, comes out publicly, saying that he wants to fight Pacquiao, then that will likely push Hatton off the table. That is, unless Mayweather waits too long before making it known that he’d like to face Pacquiao.

Either way, Pacquiao will be a huge winner because a fight with Hatton will without question be another mega fight for Manny, who stopped Oscar De La Hoya in the 8th round on December 6th in a huge fight.

Hatton isn’t quite as popular as Pacquiao, given that he was beaten by Mayweather by a 10th round knockout in December 2007 and didn’t look good in his subsequent fights against Juan Lazcano and most recently Paulie Malignaggi, but Hatton is still very popular in Europe, where they worship him through thick and through thin regardless of his success as a fighter.

The fight, if it comes off, will likely take place in Las Vegas, Nevada, rather than England where Hatton resides. This would take away a lot of the advantages that Hatton has, because he seems to fight very well in front of his huge Manchester crowds and sometimes gets away with brawling tactics that are often penalized in the U.S.

Brawling or not, it’s doubtful that Hatton will find much success against the quicker, stronger and better moving Pacquiao, who rarely fights on the inside. Indeed, this fights has the workings of another David Diaz vs. Pacquiao bout with Hatton playing the part of the slower but powerful Diaz.

That fight turned out to be a huge mismatch with Pacquiao totally dominating Diaz from start to finish, eventually stopping him in the in the 9th round. In fairness to Hatton, he’s clearly a stronger fighter than Diaz, but the fact remains, he’s probably no faster than him and will be at a huge disadvantage against the speedy Pacquiao.

One would hope that Mayweather makes it known soon that he would like to fight Pacquiao, and save us boxing fans from having to watch another mismatch for Pacquiao. Hatton is a fine fighter, but let’s be real here: he’s not in the class of someone like Pacquiao and will probably get beaten worse than he did against Mayweather.

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