Opinion | Sep 14 2018

Manny Pacquiao retracts Top Rank payment claim

Manny Pacquiao apologises for Top Rank payment claim and puts it down to a miscommunication, as Eric Armit rounds up the boxing world in his Snips & Snipes column
Manny Pacquiao
manny-pacquiao  |  Mikey Williams/Top Rank

FINALLY it is here, Gennady Golovkin vs Canelo Alvarez II. All of the trash talking is over and the most anticipated return fight of the year, perhaps for many years, will be over by Sunday morning. The bad feeling between the two fighters is genuine and so is the difficulty in predicting who will win. I slightly favour Golovkin so Gennady is my pick, but my dearest wish is a fight worthy of the occasion and a clear undisputed winner. Under this great fight David Lemieux vs Gary O’Sullivan promises mayhem with Lemieux looking down the slope if he loses and O’Sullivan hoping to get a fight against the winner of Golovkin vs. Alvarez. There is also Jamie Munguia and Roman Gonzalez fighting good level opposition. Munguia an exciting talent and he will be looking to blow away 20-1 Canadian Brandon Cook to build on his impressive power shows in wins over Sadam Ali and Liam Smith. Roman Gonzalez will be having his first fight for a year and be trying to salvage his career with a win over experienced Moises Fuentes. Two losses in the space of six months against Thai Srisaket Sor Rungvisai saw Gonzalez fall from high in the pound-for-pound rankings to being dismissed as over the hill.

It has been good to see some big fights announced and confirmed or in the case of Deontay Wilder vs. Tyson Fury seemingly all systems go with only the final details regarding date and venue to be announced – hopefully. December 1 or 8 have been mentioned as possible dates. Both fighters seem to have made concessions; Tyson by agreeing to the fight being held in the USA and Wilder to a 50/50 purse split. There is some scepticism over whether it really will take place so let’s hope we see very soon a date and venue set and tickets on sale. Of course Wilder vs Tyson is bigger than Anthony Joshua vs. Alex Povetkin. The winner will have a strong hand when it comes to bargaining for the Joshua fight next year but both Wilder and Fury know that what they are engaged in is basically an eliminator with the winner going on to face Joshua next year for a “Money Mayweather” level purse. If Wilder vs. Fury does not come off then both fighters will have to scrape around trying to find another significant fight this year. Who knows perhaps the WBC might even insist Wilder fights the winner of the [likely] December 22 fight between Dillian White and Dereck Chisora. Of course if Povetkin beats Joshua then it’s a different ball game as the winner of Wilder vs. Fury vs. Povetkin instead of Joshua won’t have the same significance or the same money.

The other fights announced are Vasyl Lomachenko vs. Jose Pedraza and Terence Crawford vs. Jose Benavidez.  The Lomachenko vs. Pedraza fight on December 8 will be a unification contest with Lomachenko’s WBA lightweight title and Pedraza’s WBO title on the line.  Pedraza boxed well to win the title from Ray Beltran but I can’t see him stopping Lomachenko from adding another title to his collection,