Manny Pacquiao maintains he wants his next fight to be a long-awaited showdown with the undefeated Floyd Mayweather Jr as the American turned to Twitter to tell ‘The Pac-Man’ to “Step up, Punk”.
In an interview from his native Philippines, the eight-division world champion reiterated his desire to fight Mayweather.
“I’ve said this over and over before and I’m saying this again, I want Floyd Mayweather Jr. to be my next opponent and I haven’t changed my choice despite recent developments,” said the 33-year-old.
A Las Vega sjudge ruled last week that Mayweather could start his 90-day jail stint on June 1 after his guilty plea to domestic violence charges. He was initially set to report to jail on January 6, but the judge agreed to delay the sentence to allow the 34-year-old to fight on May 5 at the MGM Grand.
The unexpected ruling immediately led to speculation that the door had been opened for the highly-anticipated Mayweather-Pacquiao matchup.
Mayweather chimed in Tuesday via Twitter, writing, “Manny Pacquiao I’m calling you out let’s fight May 5th and give the world what they want to see.
“My Jail Sentence was pushed back because the date was locked in. Step up Punk.”
But an agreement for the fight still must be hammered out with Pacquiao’s promoter, Bob Arum.
“I am meeting with my promoter, Bob Arum, on Tuesday and I will insist that the fight with Mayweather be given the preference,” said Pacquiao, who has won 15 fights in a row dating back to 2005.
“Whoever the fans want me to fight, I will face him atop the ring. I don’t choose the fight. It is my promoter who does because it’s his job. My job is to fight, everybody must realise that.”
The 80-year-old Arum has said he does not want the Pacquiao-Mayweather clash to be held at the MGM Grand, which seats 16,800. Arum has proposed building a larger temporary stadium inLas Vegasfor the fight, or holding the match at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington,Texas.
Other possible opponents for Pacquiao include light welterweight champion Tim Bradley, Juan Manuel Marquez, or Miguel Cotto.
Pacquiao won a controversial decision over Marquez in November in the third fight between the two, and scored a TKO victory over Cotto in November, 2009.
by Buford Balony