Pacquiao needs win before 'Fight of the Century' rematch

Sports | 21 Nov 2018

Talk of a rematch with Floyd Mayweather must wait until after January's WBA welterweight title defense against Adrien Broner, Manny Pacquiao says.

"Floyd, if he comes out of retirement, we will see after this fight," the Filipino said when asked about former champion Mayweather while promoting his January 19 fight with Broner in Las Vegas.

"But we cannot underestimate Adrien Broner," Pacquiao added. "I have to get through this fight before we talk about a rematch with Floyd Mayweather."

There has been speculation about a rematch since Mayweather scored a unanimous decision over Pacquiao in a 2015 bout dubbed "The Fight of the Century" that never lived up to its billing. Pacquiao claimed later he was hampered by a shoulder injury.

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

Pacquiao, who turns 40 next month, shed some light on what was said during that encounter. "He said he wants to come out of retirement to fight me ... but I told him 'I got the belt and you have to challenge me and come out from your retirement,'" the Filipino said.

Pacquiao (60-7-2) showed a return to form in July when he stunned defending champion Lucas Matthysse with a seventh-round knockout in Kuala Lumpur to claim the WBA welterweight title.

American Broner (33-3-1), once considered by some an heir apparent to Mayweather, is far from intimidated by southpaw Pacquiao.

"He's been knocked out three times," said Broner, 29. "We know he can go out and go to sleep. He don't need no [sleep aid] for that. We know he can go to sleep, and I got the power to do it."

REUTERS

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