NO  FINAL  DEAL  ON  PACMAN  BOUT  OCT.  17

[PHOTO AT LEFT -
Manny Pacquiao MANILA, Philippines]

MANILA, MAY 25, 2009 (STAR) By Abac Cordero - Talks of Manny Pacquiao facing either Miguel Cotto or Shane Mosley next remain just that: talks.

“They’re propaganda,” said Pacquiao’s Canadian adviser, Mike Koncz, when sought by The STAR to share the latest on the FIlipino boxer as far as his plans on the ring are concerned.

Aside from the fact that Pacquiao has agreed to return on Oct. 17, nothing is definite as to who’ll be in the other corner. Even the fight venue remains a tossup among a lot of bidders.

“There’s been no real discussions, just small discussions between Manny, me and (lawyer) Geng (Franklin Gacal) as to who the next opponent’s gonna be,” said Gacal last night.

He said Freddie Roach mentioning the names of Cotto and Mosley, a pair of welterweights who can give Pacquiao the toughest challenge ever in his career, can be taken as an opinion.

“Freddie is the trainer he’s not the manager so he’s not involved in the final process of negotiation for the selection of the opponent. With due respect to train Manny is his duty,” said Koncz.

“Again it’s propaganda,” said Koncz of recent articles saying Pacquiao would fight Cotto or Mosley at 142 lb, and that both fighters have turned down the idea, saying it’s 145 lb or nothing.

Koncz said Pacquiao has never talked about Cotto or Mosley as his next opponent.

“Who said we want to fight Cotto? Manny has never said that. He’s never made any statement on that.

“And Shane Mosley? They’re all potential opponents but Manny has not narrowed it down to either or both individuals nor have they been a major part of our discussions,” added Koncz.

“In fact Shane Mosley never came up in the discussions Geng, Manny and I had. There’s a lot of names – there’s Julio Cesar Chavez and Edwin Valero – but again Mayweather is out there,” he said.

A Team Pacquiao insider said it’s really Mayweather they’re after simply because it’s the biggest fight out there.

“But the thing is we’re not going to wait for this guy. If something else comes up to us... he chose to fight someone else,” said Roach of Mayweather, who decided to come out of retirement and take on Juan Manuel Marquez on July 18.

“We’re the top dog right now. If he wants to make the kind of money he’s talking about then he has to fight Pacquiao. Pacquiao’s the draw right now – not Mayweather,” Roach told fighthype.com.

Whoever it’s going to be, Koncz said the weight shouldn’t be much of a problem, but the profit sharing.

“Negotiations on the profit sharing is going to be the major issue. Weight is an issue but it’s the sharing, the economics. We will decide on the opponent whom we find is suitable for Manny,” Koncz explained.

“The hardest thing with Mayweather he wants the 60/40 he’s talking about. Pacquiao’s the number one guy. 60/40 our way will work. 60/40 his way, it’s not happening,” the greatest trainer in the world right now added.

He said the final decision is with Pacquiao, whatever his promoter, Bob Arum of Top Rank, puts on the table.

The final decision is with Manny. Then it will be on Manny’s terms. We will not allow them to push us around. Ultimately what his decision is what will happen,” said his adviser.

Cotto on Pacman bout: It's 145 pounds or bust By Abac Cordero Updated May 23, 2009 12:00 AM

[PHOTO AT LEFT - Miguel Cotto]

MANILA, Philippines – If you think Miguel Cotto is dying to fight Manny Pacquiao, at any weight, anytime, anywhere, think again.

The WBO welterweight champion from Puerto Rico is not. Maybe not now when he has a big fight to think of.

“Nothing less than 145 pounds,” Cotto, younger, bigger and stronger than Pacquiao, told Primera Hora yesterday.

Cotto told the Puerto Rican newspaper he’s not willing to fight Pacquiao “below 145 pounds.”

Cotto’s statement, which comes close to his June 13 showdown with the dangerous Josh Clottey in New York, puts a little doubt on Bob Arum’s statement that a Cotto-Pacquiao fight would be easy to stage.

Cotto and Pacquiao are both under Top Rank, and Arum thinks he shouldn’t have a problem getting two of his fighters up at Madison Square Garden for a huge fight later this year.

Weight, sometimes more than money, could either make or break a planned fight.

Pacquiao’s trainer, Freddie Roach, said they might fight either Cotto or Shane Mosley if they’re willing to go down to at least 142 lb, and nothing more.

Mosley said he can’t make 142 lb either, and asked Roach why Pacquiao’s can’t fight him at 147 lb as he did against Oscar dela Hoya last December.

“Mosley is not Dela Hoya in terms of setting a weight handicap,” said Roach in that Mosley would pose a lot of problems at 147 lb even if he’s of the same age as Dela Hoya at 36.

Roach believes that Pacquiao is unbeatable at 140 lb, and dragging the bigger boxers down should be to the advantage of the Pinoy pound-for-pound champion.

“It’s really up to Manny at what weight he’d like to fight Cotto, if at all ... Manny might want to bring it down to 142,” Pacquiao’s Canadian adviser, Mike Koncz, was quoted as saying.

“This fight would mean more to Cotto than to Manny. If a limit of 142 is agreed, let Cotto struggle to make weight, not Manny,” he told The STAR.

Cotto is set to face Clottey for the WBO 147-lb title, and if he gets past this one a fight with Pacquiao, his stablemate at Top Rank, would be next in line.

Others who may be lined up against Pacquiao are the comebacking Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Juan Manuel Marquez, the stubborn Mexican. They square off on July 18 in Las Vegas at 147 lb.

Again, the winner of that fight should be considered next in line for Pacquiao, but that may come early next year – or unless Cotto sticks to his announcement that it’s 145 lb or nothing.

Or he could be playing hard to get.

“Now Cotto is on record that, superfight or no superfight, he won’t go lower than 145, and though some may think this is mere posturing for the eventual negotiation, I tend to think he’ll stick to that number,” wrote sportingnews.com.

Fighting Cotto at 145 lb could turn out to be a nightmare for Pacquiao, and Roach won’t let that happen.


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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