Promoter Says Manny Pacquiao Close to April Fight in Las Vegas
Posted on: January 17, 2018, 05:00h.
Last updated on: January 17, 2018, 04:31h.
Most legislators visit with constituents or family when a Congressional session is in recess but Philippine Senator Manny Pacquiao might be in the boxing ring.
Promoter Bob Arum said Tuesday that he is working with ESPN to bring the fighter to Las Vegas to fight an undisclosed opponent on April 21.
Pacquiao hasn’t fought since July 3 when he lost as a minus-600 favorite in Brisbane, Australia to Jeff Horn. Arum said Horn would be on the card as well, conducting his second middleweight title defense against Terence Crawford.
They would like the site to be T-Mobile Arena but Arum has run into a snag. The red-hot Vegas Golden Knights might be in the midst of the NHL Playoffs and the facility would be unavailable.
He said unless the league gives its approval they might be forced to go to Madison Square Garden in New York City.
“Unless they can get some clearance from the league, we can’t do it in Las Vegas because none of the other arenas are available and we would have to do it somewhere else,” Arum told the Las Vegas Review Journal.
McGregor vs. Pacquiao?
No opponent has been named and Arum said they are close but would give no hints as to who would fight Pacquiao.
“We’re working on an opponent,” Arum told the Review Journal. “Don’t want to be too premature about that, but we’re working on it as we speak. Pacquiao seems like he wants to come back, so we’re trying to get that finalized.”
The name that keeps popping up however, is UFC Champion Conor McGregor.
The former champion said in December the two camps have been in talks for a bout this year and April is one of the few opportunities he has to compete. The Philippine Congress has a break from about the second week of March until the first of May and then another from the beginning of June to the third week of July.
“If we can negotiate it, I have no problem,” he wrote on Twitter. “It is OK with both of us.”
Odds have already been set on a possible match up. The 39 year old would be a heavy favorite at minus-550, while the Irishman would be a plus-400.
Precedent has Been Set
McGregor made the transition from the Octagon to the ring in August when he fought and lost to undefeated champion Floyd Mayweather. He was a big underdog in that fight as well. Odds began at minus-2500 for Mayweather and plus-1100 for McGregor.
As the fight neared its August date the lines were adjusted in McGregor’s favor. Some sports books had him bet all the way down to 3-1, while Mayweather dropped to a minus-400.
Not many people gave McGregor a chance in his first professional fight, but he lasted until a TKO in the 10th. After the bout Mayweather complimented McGregor’s skills.
“He is a lot better than I thought he was,” he said. “He used different angles and was a tough competitor.”
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