Pacquiao vs Mayweather: Is The “Fight of the Century” Finally Happening?

By the time Floyd Mayweather Jr. announced his retirement from boxing in 2008, he was holding the distinction of being The Ring Magazine’s Best Pound-for-Pound Fighter in the World, with Manny Pacquiao coming in at Number Two. Since then, the public has clamored for the two to face each other in the ring for what would fittingly be the Fight of the Century. For the past six years, boxing fans all over the world have anticipated the final negotiations to seal the deal, to no avail. The latest update is Mayweather’s challenge to Pacquiao, setting the fight date himself at May 2, 2015 if Pacquiao agrees.

Mayweather boasts of an unblemished win-loss-draw record of 47-0-0, befitting his number one pound for pound fighter status. 26 of his wins are by knockout. The rest, a total of 21 fights, were won via unanimous decision. He himself proclaims that “when you talk boxing, you talk Mayweather”. Winning against any other boxer will be nothing like beating the undefeated world boxing champion. With boxing analysts agreeing that he is the benchmark by which all other aspiring boxers will be measured, there’s no question why everybody who follows the sport wishes to see him fight toe to toe against Pacquiao.

The Filipino boxer, on the other hand, has a pre-fight record of 58-5-2. Despite losing three times by knock-out, two by unanimous decision, and having two fights ending up in draws, an impressive 38 or more than 65% of the Filipino slugger’s wins are knockouts. The 20 remaining wins were won through the judges’ decision, and even in his losses through unanimous decision, he was very close to winning. He brings pride and low crime rates to his home country during every fight – whether he wins or loses.

What’s holding back the Mayweather vs. Pacquiao negotiations?
The failure to make the fight happen even became The Ring magazine’s Event of the Year for 2010. Hype started in 2009 and has grown since. After Mayweather’s fight with Marquez, who is known for his fights with Pacquiao and Pacquiao’s bouts with Mayweather’s previous opponents Ricky Hatton and Oscar de la Hoya, the CEO for Mayweather Productions declared that a fight between the two pound-for-pound champions would be the clear next choice “from a marketing standpoint”. The frenzy was spiked further after Pacquiao’s win against Puerto Rican champion Miguel Cotto.

Golden Boy Promotions then sent an eight-page contract in behalf of Mayweather to Pacquiao’s camp over at Top Rank. What happened next was a series of negotiations regarding the payment, but a much bigger issue was with the Olympic-style drug testing proposed by Mayweather’s side. It even went as far as Pacquiao suing the other camp, alleging that they made defamatory comments by accusing him of taking performance-enhancing drugs. Still, it was all a joke to him and his team as they are confident that Pacman is not doing any illegal drugs.

Various rumors started, ranging from Pacquiao being afraid of getting his blood taken to bargaining to have less drug tests or to have a smaller amount of blood taken from him as he believes that it would weaken him and affect his performance. In interviews, the Filipino insists that he is ready for drug testing any time, no matter what as long as it is done by a neutral organization.

As the years passed, the drug testing issues faded into the background and mud-slinging, insults, and taunting has been passed back and forth from both camps through media interviews, social media; and even fans have begun their own speculations on why a Mayweather vs. Pacquiao fight would not be possible.

Both camps must have had enough as Mayweather gave in to Pacquiao’s comments about him cowering from the fight, saying that they should finally give the fans what they want. Pacquiao’s camp has not made any confirmations, but we might as well entertain high hopes that the Fight of the Century is finally happening in May of 2015.

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