Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao are seemingly open to having a rematch next year, and despite the disappointment surrounding their first bout, it remains an intriguing prospect.
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In a text message sent to ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith on Tuesday, Mayweather made it known that he would be interested in fighting his rival again next year after he undergoes surgery.
— ESPN First Take (@ESPN_FirstTake) May 5, 2015
Pacquaio has caused a great deal of controversy with his shoulder injury, and while he is expected to be ruled out of action for between nine months and a year, he may also face disciplinary and legal action for not fully disclosing the problem.
Nevertheless, it appears as though the pair could meet again despite their first bout failing to live up to expectations, as Top Rank CEO Bob Arum has now suggested that negotiations could in fact be easier this time round after the two parties were finally able to come to an agreement earlier this year.
“I think we now know what the pitfalls were,” Arum said, according to ESPN.
“And, ultimately, with all the aggravation and trouble, look at the pot of gold that we both produced. I think there will probably be less aggravation in a rematch. We understand each other better now. There’s a real possibility it could work even better.”
In order to make the fight happen, Mayweather would have to cancel his proposed plan of fighting for the last time in September, and instead return to the ring again in 2016 when the MGM Grand plans to open its new 20,000-seat arena.
Further, it remains to be seen how long he would have to wait for Pacquiao to be ready to fight again, as the Filipino star will need a training camp after he has completed his rehabilitation.
While Arum believes that the fight can be made, there are still numerous obstacles that they would have to overcome in order to set up a rematch. Not only would there be question marks over demand given that the first fight didn’t live up to its billing, Mayweather could well demand a greater share of the purse too.
However, despite how problematic it may seem on the surface, it makes both boxing and business sense for the pair to engage in another bout next year.
Having defeated Pacquiao in dominant fashion, the unbeaten American superstar would have a case to argue that he should have a bigger share of the pot, while in turn the same debate could rage on as no other fighter will allow him to make such money again if he chooses to look elsewhere. In what could be the last fight of his professional career, does Mayweather really want to bow out in less than extravagant circumstances?
Pacquiao did not perform last Saturday – shoulder injury or not – and it was a fight that ultimately left fans disappointed. Should the pair meet in a rematch, there should be no expectation that Mayweather’s tactics will be any different but if it was a genuine problem, the shoulder does raise questions about if it would have been any different in the ring for his opponent.
A fully healthy Pac-Man that has now been ridiculed by the world’s media will have a point to prove, and that could bring out the aggressive killer instinct within him to make the rematch a much better spectacle for all concerned as with expectations being lowered, it could end up being the clash we all wanted to see in the first place.