Happy New Year! And hopefully it will be for all of you and for the boxing world that is in limbo. Because the best pound-for-pound fighters in the world, Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather Jr. can’t seem to agree on blood testing procedures for their potential super bout that is slated for March 13th in Las Vegas.
A source for Bob Arum of Top Rank, promoter of Pacquiao said last week that there is no way the fight will take place. He claimed, Arum, will no loner deal with Mayweather, or Richard Schaefer of Golden BOY Promotions who Mayweather hired to handle with promotion of the fight.
The sticking point is how testing procedures would be handled for both fighters. Arum has insisted that Pacquiao, the welterweight champion, and record six- division title holder will not go along with Mayweather and Schaefer demanding that their be random drug testing for both fighters before the fight.
And last week Pacquiao filed a defamation lawsuit in the U.S. District Court of Las Vegas against Mayweather and his camp, and also against Schaefer and Golden Boy claiming his reputation was damaged. The allegations that Pacquiao is backing off form random testing in fear of being exposed for using body enhancement drugs.
Now a mediator has intervened, summoned by Arum and agreed to be used by Schaefer and Mayweather. A former Federal judge, who by the way Arum trusts, once resolved a dispute that Pacquiao had when he was with Golden Boy and Oscar De La Hoya.
But it is more than deciding how this testing would be done, also under the supervision of the Nevada State Athletic Commission which would hold jurisdiction at the MGM Grand Hotel in Las Vegas. The defamation lawsuit has made this a more nasty war out of the ring, and to say the least, even the Supreme Court would have a difficult time getting the fighters to come to an agreement.
So here we have it. The New Year is a few days old, boxing has undoubtedly the highest profile fight of all-time waiting to happen, and we are all in limbo. First they had to agree on a date and that was resolved. Then there was the back-and-forth about a venue. From New York, to Dallas, finally the MGM because the source at Top Rank said that is where Schaefer had already made the deal.
There is also the known fact about the bitterness Mayweather and Arum have for each other. It goes back to the days when Arum promoted Mayweather, and now Schaefer gets in the mix, who works for De La Hoya, another former fighter that made plenty of money with Arum.