The intrigue surrounding Manny Pacquiao’s next fight continues to simmer.
The Filipino puncher’s first outing since a controversial loss to Timothy Bradley had long been scheduled for Nov. 10 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas against an opponent to be determined, with Bradley, Juan Manuel Marquez and Miguel Cotto — all previous Pacquiao opponents — among the leading contenders.
On Wednesday, longtime Pacquiao advisor Michael Koncz told ESPN.com the fight had been moved to Dec. 1 due to issues with his re-election campaign for the congressional seat he holds in the Philippines. Koncz said Pacquiao was required to submit his certificate of candidacy in person and didn’t want to interrupt his training for two days in October with less than a month before the fight.
However, a spokesperson for the Philippine Commission on Elections told the Philippine Daily Inquirer that Pacquiao in fact does not need to submit his certificate in person, but can send the documents through an authorized representative.
The inconsistent messages surrounding the postponement have only further fueled rumors, perhaps borne from desperate hope of fight fans and media, that Pacquiao’s team is working to make the long-anticipated megafight with Floyd Mayweather.
Koncz flatly denied the Mayweather speculation, however, saying he doubts the undefeated American will fight again before 2013 after recently serving two months of a three-month sentence in a misdemeanor battery case.
“As you know, we’re willing and able to fight Floyd anytime he wants, but I don’t believe he is ready,” Koncz told ESPN.com. “Floyd just got out of (county jail). He’s spending time with his family. He’s enjoying his freedom. He has money left over from the last fight after being in jail for two months. I don’t see Floyd going into the ring until next year, but who knows? I have no confirmation of his schedule. I’m just glad he’s out of jail. I wish him all the luck in the world and so does Manny, but I don’t see Floyd fighting before us this year.”
– SI.com staff