It isn’t signed, sealed and delivered yet but all signs point to a May 2 clash in Las Vegas between Manny Pacquiao and Ricky Hatton of England.
"As far as I’m concerned, it’s done," Top Rank head Bob Arum told the Bulletin yesterday, moments after the Hall of Fame promoter met with Pacquiao, lawyer Franklin Gacal and chief trainer Freddie Roach over dinner in Los Angeles.
Arum said either the Thomas and Mack Center, which seats 19,000, or the MGM Grand Garden Arena, which can accommodate more than 15,000, will play host to the scheduled 12-round bout at super-lightweight/junior-welterweight (140 lbs).
Arum personally went to Tinseltown to discuss the matter with the 30-year-old Filipino pound-for-pound king to ensure that he knows where Team Pacquiao stands.
"I have been talking with Golden Boy Promotions (GBP) about this fight and it’s just about done," said Arum, who has come back from a week-long vacation in Cabo San Lucas in Mexico.
GBP, which is owned by Oscar De La Hoya and whose operations is handled by Richard Schaefer, has promotional rights over the rugged Hatton, whose devil-may-care attitude on top of the ring is said to be custom-made for Pacquiao.
"Ninety percent (done)," Gacal said, stressing that everyone on the team wants the fight to happen.
Gacal said a deal should be finalized soon as he has been given the authority by Pacquiao to work out some of the minor concerns.
It could not be determined what will be the revenue-sharing scheme although it is safe to say that Pacquiao gets the bigger and chunkier piece of the pie since he currently represents the sport of boxing.
Pacquiao settled for the smaller piece of the pie when he agreed to battle De La Hoya early this month since it is the Golden Boy – and not himself – is the main attraction.
But things are a whole lot different now and Team Pacquiao is very much aware of Pacquiao’s full earning potential.
Pacquiao should be back in the country on Jan. 10 after the birth of Jinkee’s fourth child on New Year’s Day.
But it will not take long before Pacquiao heads back to Los Angeles to begin training camp as he will have to be there in the last week of February for a three-city press tour.
"New York, San Francisco and Los Angeles (will be the stops)," said Gacal.
After the whirlwind promotional tour, Pacquiao will show up at the Wild Card Boxing Club for training camp proper.
article source : Manila Bulletin
tailor made for the Pacman indeed !