Manny Pacquiao's next fight is official. The Filipino sensation will face old rival and reigning lightweight champion Juan Manuel Marquez on November 12 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. Top Rank (Pacquiao's promoter) met today with Marquez and hammered out the deal.
As many know, Golden Boy Promotions had the right to match any competing promoters' offers for a Marquez fight, but GBP simply could not match what Top Rank offered here, though they did try to get creative. When the fight was thought to be Marquez getting $5 million for a 147-pound fight with Pacquiao, they offered $5 million for Marquez to face Saul "Canelo" Alvarez at the same weight.
And when the weight for the fight dipped down to 144 pounds, Golden Boy considered involving Victor Ortiz. Ultimately, nothing was enough, and Golden Boy couldn't reasonably match the latest reported offer, which is $5 million for Marquez at a 144-pound catchweight, with a $10 million payday for a fourth fight between the two if Marquez upsets Pacquiao in November.
The fight has seemed like a done deal for about a week now, and the initial offer by Top Rank was sent to Golden Boy's lawyers even before Pacquiao faced Shane Mosley on May 7, though Bob Arum and the company refused to publicly discuss the offer. Now it's official, and Arum says that Golden Boy has signed off on everything, according to Steve Kim.
A television outlet has not been officially announced, but one would expect both Showtime PPV and HBO PPV to make serious offers. The world of televised boxing right now is a lot brighter if you're the network with Manny Pacquiao in your corner. If nothing is announced soon, a telling sign could be which network -- if either -- makes a play to air Marquez's scheduled July 2 tune-up fight with David Diaz.
So now that it's a done deal, what's your feeling on this fight?