Top Rank chief Bob Arum, promoter of Manny Pacquiao, is urging his fighter to drop his 60-40 purse split demands and go with a 50-50 split, according to the Los Angeles Times:
"There's no way he's getting the 60-40," Arum told The Times Tuesday. "Unless he comes to his senses and his people start acting intelligently . . . we'll see if we can keep it together, but the split is supposed to be 50-50. We've all agreed to it. Now, people are whispering in Pacquiao's ear. If they keep pushing for 60-40, Hatton and Schaefer are pulling the plug."
This is the second time in as many fights that the Pacquiao team has pulled something like this in the latter stages of an agreement. They tried to milk as much as possible out of the Oscar de la Hoya fight, too, but that was a different situation. Oscar had essentially no other options that he was willing to take, or that would sell. Ricky Hatton might have other options, and even if he doesn't, he's acting like he does.
Hatton's lawyer, Gareth Williams, is warning the Pacquiao camp that he could take legal action if they renege on a "binding verbal" deal for a 50-50 split:
"We had all this before Christmas when they [the Pacquiao camp] were talking about different figures and we agreed a 50-50 split with them," Williams said. "So having agreed that with them, we're not going to change our mind."
Again, never assume any boxer, even a likable, fan-friendly, wonderful fighter like Pacquiao, is not going to be out for the most money. I do think this -- like almost all of these instances -- falls more in line with, as Arum calls them, the whisperers, the guys talking for Pacquiao in negotiations.
But do you not suspect that with newfound mass fame for Pacquiao comes a bit of a swelled head? Hatton is a gate attraction, his fans will travel big for this fight, and outside of a Mayweather comeback, this is THE BIGGEST fight to be made in boxing. And like I said before, I don't suspect either of them would enough money to fight Mayweather to equal a 50-50 split with each other. If this fight falls apart, they're both taking less money next time out, no matter who they fight.
I just hope this all gets resolved and we get firm word that this fight is on and crackin', because it's such a great fight in every way and is so good for the sport of boxing.