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Mayweather vs. Pacquiao contract still not inked, who’s to blame?

By Chris Williams: With just 11 days to go before the huge mega-fight between Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao, the contract for the fight to be staged at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas still hasn’t been signed, according to Darren Rovell from ESPN.com. They’re reporting that Pacquiao’s Top Rank promoter Bob Arum says that the contract is different now from the draft of the contract that he saw previously. He reportedly signed a term sheet two months ago, but not the contract.

It’s unclear what happens if the contract for the fight doesn’t get signed by Arum for it to be staged at the MGM Grand. It would be very, very interesting if Arum chooses to dig his heels into the sand and refuses to sign the contract.

“We agreed that we would all be signatories on the final contract and then they sent us a draft of the agreement and it excluded us,” said Arum via ESPN.com. “They don’t want us to have any say,” Arum said. “So whether they came up with the deal between Mayweather and MGM before or after our agreement, they’ve committed fraud either way.”

Arum reportedly won’t sign the contract until he becomes one of the signatories. If they don’t let him, then it looks like they’ll have to come up with some other idea in order to make the fight move ahead. It’s hard to believe that Arum would refuse to sign it, but it’s also hard to believe that tickets still have printed with 11 days to go before what could be the biggest fight in boxing history.

The tickets for the fight will be split between the MGM Grand, Mayweather Promotions and Top Rank. The MGM Grand will get the larger share of the split, according to ESPN.

Being left out as one of the signatories on the contract means Arum and his Top Rank Promotions won’t be able to take part in the in some of the decisions that go into the fight. I guess that means that Arum and Top Rank won’t be able to share in some of important decisions that otherwise will be decided by the lead promoter for the fight, which in this case is Mayweather Promotions.

Mayweather Promotions CEO Leonard Ellerbe sees it as a control issue for Arum. Ellerbe says that Arum agreed to the contract months ago, and now he’s not willing to accept what he agreed to already.

According to ESPN, Pacquiao posted a copy of the term sheet on his Facebook page briefly before he deleted it. Someone took a screen shot of the term sheet. It showed that Mayweather Promotions at the lead promoter for the event. It also had him as the lead negotiator with the MGM Grand.

Without the contract being signed the tickets have not gone on sale, and it’s going to stay that way until the contract is eventually signed. It would be a huge mess if they don’t sign the contract.

Ellerbe believes the fight will still go ahead, but it remains to be seen if that’ll happen.


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