Pac­quiao takes jab at May­weather over New Year’s Eve cake­walk

Gulf Times Sport - - SPORT -

Manny Pac­quiao has been fully fo­cused on next week­end’s fight with Adrien Broner but on Thurs­day the Filipino eight-divi­sion world cham­pion still found time to take a sub­tle jab at Floyd May­weather.

Pac­quiao, who has been repeatedly asked about a pos­si­ble re­match with May­weather, pulled no punches when com­ment­ing on his for­mer foe’s one-sided New Year’s Eve ex­hi­bi­tion vic­tory over a Ja­panese kick­boxer that lasted two min­utes.

“It’s my first time to see an ex­hi­bi­tion where you knock your op­po­nent out,” WBA wel­ter­weight cham­pion Pac­quiao, 40, told a con­fer­ence call to pro­mote his Jan­uary 19 fight against Amer­i­can Broner.

“Sup­pos­edly an ex­hi­bi­tion is just to en­ter­tain peo­ple, noth­ing se­ri­ous, for three rounds. But that’s what I un­der­stand about ex­hi­bi­tions.”

It was the second time in as many weeks that Pac­quiao has taken a shot at May­weather — who said he earned $9mn for fight­ing Ten­shin Na­sukawa — with the Filipino hav­ing also tweeted after the fight that his New Year’s res­o­lu­tion would be to “only fight ex­pe­ri­enced op­po­nents who are my size or big­ger”.

There has been spec­u­la­tion about a May­weather-Pac­quiao re­match ever since the Amer­i­can scored a unan­i­mous decision in their 2015 bout that was dubbed ‘The Fight of the Cen­tury’ but never lived up to its billing.

Some pun­dits have even sug­gested that Pac­quiao’s WBA wel­ter­weight ti­tle de­fence against Broner is an ideal tune-up for such a re­match since the 29-year-old Amer­i­can has a de­fen­sive style that many ex­perts feel is sim­i­lar to May­weather.

“Let me clar­ify, Adrien Broner is not a tune-up fight. He is a for­mer cham­pion. He is fast and he’s a good boxer,” said Pac­quiao. “That’s why I don’t want to talk about my next fight un­til I fin­ish this busi­ness against Adrien Broner.”

May­weather, 41, re­tired in 2017 with a 50-0 record and said on In­sta­gram in Septem­ber that a re­match of the much-hyped 2015 fight with Pac­quiao would take place. The post in­cluded a video of the pair talk­ing to each other at a Tokyo mu­sic fes­ti­val.

Pac­quiao may be eye­ing a lu­cra­tive re­match with May­weather but he re­fused to shows his cards and said such talk would have to wait un­til after next week’s wel­ter­weight ti­tle de­fence.

“I have no prob­lem fight­ing any­body as long as there is no prob­lems with the ne­go­ti­a­tions,” said Pac­quiao. “My plan is just one at a time.”

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