Pacquiao’s team says he’s no longer with Top Rank
By Chris Williams: Manny Pacquiao is no longer with his long time promoters Top Rank, according to the Filipino star’s lawyer Eldibrando Viernesto. He says Pacquiao’s contract with Top Rank expired a year ago after his fight with Jeff Horn on July 2 in Brisbane, Australia.
Top Rank promoter Bob Arum says Pacquiao is still with his company, and he plans on being involved in his next fight if winds up facing WBA World welterweight champion Lucas Matthysse on June 24 in Malaysia.
“I reviewed the contract and I found out that Bob Arum has no more say even in the rematch, should there be any, between Manny Pacquiao and Australian boxer Jeff Horn,” Pacquiao’s lawyer Viernesto said to philstar.com.
Pacquiao is leaving Top Rank late in the game with his career no longer looking as good as it once did. If Pacquiao had made this move years ago, he’d be in better shape to be involved in big fights on PPV with a different promoter. Right now though, it doesn’t look good for Pacquiao unless the investor money comes through, and he’s able to beat Matthysse on June 24 to resurrect his career.
Can that fight happen without Top Rank being involved? Arum sure sounds like he believes op Rank will be a part of it. It would be a shame if the fight is blocked by Top Rank. Pacquiao wanted to fight Amir Khan last year in a fight that would have given his career a big boost if he’d taken it and won. Instead, Arum matched Pacquiao against Jeff Horn, who he co-promotes, and he ended up getting roughed up badly and beaten by a controversial 12 round decision last July in Brisbane, Australia.
When you think back about what could have been for Pacquiao. It’s kind of sad. If the Khan fight would have been made for Pacquiao last year instead of the Horn match, he’d potentially be in a batter position career-wise. Of course, you’ve got to go back to the Jessie Vargas and Bradley fights as well. The boxing public were not interested in seeing Pacquiao fight Bradley a third time, which was utterly predictable, and the fans likewise had no interest in seeing Pacquiao fight Vargas. The match-making for Pacquiao has left a lot to be desired since 2016.
Well, if Pacquiao is no longer with Arum and his Top Rank promotional company, then he should be able to setup the fight with Golden Boy Promotions for June 24 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. There’s supposed to be some investors in Malaysia that will be coming up with the money to put on the Pacquiao vs. Matthysse fight for June. If that money doesn’t come through, then it’s unclear where Pacquiao goes from there.
Even if the money does come through, will the fight be tied up in litigation from Top Rank? Arum says Pacquiao is still with Top Rank. With Pacquiao about to turn 40, the last thing he needs is a protracted legal battle with Top Rank that goes on for years. Pacquiao isn’t young like Mikey Garcia was, and he was inactive for 2 ½ year him tied up with legal problems with his former promoters. Pacquiao was with Arum a lot of years, and he made his company a lot of money.
At this point it’s unclear whether Pacquiao can resurrect his career to become a PPV attraction like before. He’s not fighting often enough, and the match-making has been less than spectacular since 2016. Pacquiao fought twice in 2016, and once in 2017 against Jeff Horn. Pacquiao’s senatorial job in the Philippines eats up a lot of his time nowadays, and it wasn’t the best timing for him to sign up for that job.
Pacquiao will be turning 40-years-old in December 17, and it’s clear that he’s not the fighter that he once was. Arum recently offered Pacquiao an undercard fight against Mike Alvarado on the undercard of the Jeff Horn vs. Terence Crawford fight on ESPN. Pacquiao wanted no part of fighting in an undercard against the 37-year-old Alvarado. Pacquiao wants a title shot against Matthysse. It’s unclear how much money Arum was offering Pacquiao to fight on an undercard, but needless to say it didn’t go over well with the Filipino star.
To go from being one of the biggest pay-per-view attractions in boxing just three years ago in 2015 to being offered an undercard spot on the Horn-Crawford card, it was a dramatic fall for Pacquiao. The match-making that has been done for Pacquiao has horrible since his fight with Floyd Mayweather Jr. If you look at the three fights that Arum put him in against Tim Bradley, Jessie Vargas and Jeff Horn, it’s no wonder why Pacquiao hasn’t brought in huge ratings. Those were bad choices for Pacquiao. He should have been fighting guys like Amir Khan, Matthysse, Keith Thurman and Danny Garcia.
Golden Boy Promotions won’t be able to make the Matthysse vs. Pacquiao fight if the Malaysian investor money doesn’t come through. If the money doesn’t come through, it’s not a big enough fight to sell it on PPV in the U.S.
If Top Rank is really no longer with Pacquiao, then he’s eliminated his old promotional team as well as his long-time trainer Freddie Roach. This is truly a new beginning for Pacqiuiao. It’ll be interesting to see if Pacquiao is able to turn things around. With the right kind of match-making and a couple of big wins, Pacquiao could become a top fighter again.