Representatives for WBO welterweight titlist Timothy Bradley and interim WBC titleholder Robert Guerrero say that their fighters are ready to make a deal for a December 15 bout on HBO, but Guerrero's side says there's a rematch clause they won't take, while Bradley's side says they're not asking for a rematch clause.
So, basically, someone's lying or at least doesn't have all the facts.
The shame here is that it's a good fight for both guys right now, about as good as either of them will get, and it seems like Top Rank is totally willing to negotiate with Golden Boy for this matchup. We saw this last year, when Top Rank had nothing to do with Yuriorkis Gamboa, and Golden Boy was in a similar boat with Daniel Ponce De Leon, so they fought each other.
Like Gamboa and Ponce De Leon, Bradley and Guerrero are quality fighters stuck without many options. And a deal could be made, even given the political climate between their promoters.
What it ultimately boils down to is a lack of ideas and directions to take these two guys. Both would love to fight Floyd Mayweather, sure, but that's not happening this year, or any time soon for either of them, most likely. Almost every other top 10-type welterweight is busy for the remainder of 2012. Manny's fighting Marquez, Malignaggi is fighting Cano, Alexander and Bailey are fighting each other, Brook is fighting Saldivia, Ortiz is still on the mend, Josesito Lopez isn't going to jump into the fire again right away, and so on.
So the fight makes sense. But Guerrero's manager Luis DeCubas says this:
"They are demanding a rematch clause. We don't want a rematch clause. It's champion vs. champion and let the best man win. We have the best promoter in the world, Golden Boy Promotions and [CEO] Richard Schaefer, and Richard is going to do what's best for Robert's career. There are no issues with the money. We don't see the need for a rematch clause. You have two of the best welterweights in the world. Whoever wins will win and whoever loses will lose."
Bradley's manager Cameron Dunkin says this:
"We are not requesting a rematch clause."
Dunkin says he can't speak for Top Rank, and that might be where DeCubas is coming from. Or it could, if you like conspiracy theory crap, be that Golden Boy is telling DeCubas that Top Rank wants a rematch clause, as a way to get out of having to negotiate this -- or Top Rank could be demanding it, and could stick to it as a way to get out of having to negotiate this. I mean, if one side or both would rather not make the fight -- which is possible, because there is less love lost than ever before between the sides -- then they need to find a way to make the teams (fighter, managers, etc.) agree with them that there's some kind of reason it doesn't happen.
Because honestly, there's no good reason that this fight can't happen. And the bitching and complaining and bickering and fighting between the two big promoters is never, ever a good reason, just one that we have to deal with all the time.
Guerrero recently said he wanted this fight on Twitter, but Oscar De La Hoya told him no, more or less, and said they had something bigger lined up for him. Not likely, considering Guerrero's last fight had more comps than paid at his "home" arena in San Jose. It was a good fight but it didn't move the needle much.
Personally, I hope it happens. They're both good fighters and it's a good matchup.