Floyd Mayweather really knows how to steal the show from Manny Pacquiao. With nine days left before Pacquiao faces perennial rival Juan Manuel Marquez in Las Vegas, reports are surfacing that Mayweather is returning to ring action on May of next year, possibly against Pacquiao himself. ESPN's Dan Rafael reports that Mayweather informed Ellerbe and another adviser, Al Haymon of his decision to fight in May, most likely on the first weekend of May. "We're looking to make the biggest fight possible and everyone knows what that fight is, the little fella," Ellerbe told Rafael. "Floyd made it very clear to us, what he wanted to do. He told us he is looking to make the biggest fight that is out there and to make it in May," said Ellerbe in the ESPN report. Before the ESPN report, Fighthype.com interviewed Ellerbe and he insinuated about the possible fight with Pacquiao. "Team Mayweather is looking to make the biggest fight possible and everyone knows what that fight is. It is very pleasing to know that Manny Pacquiao has agreed to be subjected to the USDA random blood and urine tests," Ellerbe told Fighthype's Ben Thompson.
The proposed mega fight has twice been derailed by the inability of both sides to come to agreement on the issue of drug testing modalities leading to the fight. Mayweather has insisted that Pacquiao be tested according to the standards used by the Olympic committee. A position Team Pacquiao brushed as mere excuse for Mayweather's refusal to fight Pacquiao. But Pacquiao has reported to have agreed in all of Mayweather's demands for drug testing when the negotiations were revisited again last year. A disagreement with the purse was another issue that prevented it from happening. Pacquiao faced Antonio Margarito in Dallas late last year after the negotiations fell and ended up making boxing history by winning his eight world title. He also faced and dominated former Mayweather foe, Shane Mosley last May at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. Mayweather in his part was fresh from a 4th round KO of Victor Ortiz two months ago at the same venue. Both fighters scored well in pay per view and gate earnings. The fight between the two, if it ever happens is expected to shatter all revenue records in boxing.
"It's great to hear that they are now ready to take the same USDA random blood and urine tests that Floyd, Shane Mosley and Victor Ortiz have already taken. This is great for the sport of boxing and I commend Manny Pacquiao for stepping up to the plate," Ellerbe told Fighthype.com. Ellerbe also sees no trouble in Pacquiao disposing of Juan Manuel Marquez on the 12th. "I don't think it's a very competitive fight at all. Marquez is past his prime," he added.
ESPN also mentioned that Ellerbe has informed Richard Schaeffer, CEO of Golden Boy Promotions of the plan. GBP has promoted and co-promoted Mayweather Jr.'s last five fights. Schaeffer has reportedly informed the pay per view industry and the MGM Grand about plans for the fight. May 5 is always a big fight weekend. Boxing associates its biggest fights with the Mexican feast of Cinco de Mayo, owing to the large Mexican boxing fans who come to celebrate the sport and their holiday at the same time.
Is this another publicity by the Mayweather camp? Mayweather Jr. has been known to announce news on the weeks leading to his rival's fight. And certainly when all eyes are on Manny Pacquiao these days, this announcement will be met with skepticisms and criticisms once again. With Pacquiao having appearances on Jimmy Kimmel Live and CNN's Piers Morgan this week and the announcement of a million dollar deal with liquor company Hennessy, Mayweather Jr.'s announcement is perceived to thwart that of Pacquiao's media blitz.
We have been this road before, twice in fact. We have been bombarded with news, rumors and gossips of what could have been, what must have been and what can be about the Pacquiao and Mayweather bout. It has made a lot of us cynics rather than believers. Only if and when the bell rings on May 5, will I believe any such news, or I may say publicity. If it does, Santa Claus came early for Christmas this year for boxing fans.