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Mayweather vs. Pacquiao: Who's ducking who?

HBO Sports president Ken Hershman told a group

HBO Sports president Ken Hershman told a group of boxing writers during his introductory news conference at HBO's Manhattan office that the back-and-forth between Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather has become an obstacle to making other bouts. Photo Credit: Getty Images

So who’s ducking who?

Manny Pacquiao’s lawyer and manager said the Filipino Congressman put forth a “fair” offer to Floyd Mayweather Jr. that included $50 million guaranteed for each fighter and a 55-45 split of the PPV revenue with the winner getting the larger share.

Sounds like a fair offer, right? Not according to Mayweather, whose latest offer to Pacquiao, who’s fighting Tim Bradley on June 9, didn’t include any of the PPV revenue or anything on the back end.

"If I offered him $30 million, he should be happy," Mayweather said during his Tuesday afternoon press conference to promote his bout against Miguel Cotto. "If he faces Floyd Mayweather, he's not getting 50-50."

Does Mayweather really believe he’s worth that much more than Pacquiao or is this just another excuse for the undefeated welterweight not to step into the ring with him? Mayweather’s critics will say it’s the latter.

The first round of talks broke down between the camps because Pacquiao refused Mayweather’s demand for Olympic-style drug testing.

Considering Pacquiao’s quick rise through the weight classes and the way he was able to maintain his speed and power, it was an understandable sentiment.

So all Pacquiao has to do is agree and the fight is on, right? Nope. Pacquiao finally acquiesced. But that isn’t enough anymore as Mayweather now wants a majority share of the money.

Truth be told, Mayweather’s reported offer of a flat rate of $30 million is significantly higher than anything Pacquiao made previously. But Pacquiao, at the very least, is the second best pound-for-pound fighter in the world and right behind Mayweather in the PPV department.

He has the right to demand more and a cut of the PPV revenue. If the purse is in the $100 million range, Pacquiao would be foolish to take just a 30 percent cut.

Mayweather (42-0) is undefeated and the bigger TV draw in America, so it would be understandable on his part to want the lion’s share of the deal.

Mayweather said he doesn’t think the fight will happen unless Pacquiao leaves Bob Arum and Top Rank. And Pacquiao isn’t going to take a back seat to Mayweather.

It’s pretty clear that one side will have to give and the Neutral Corner believes there will be a compromise at some point.

So who’s the big winner in all of this? It’s not Mayweather, Pacquiao, Top Rank or Golden Boy, although they all will get huge paydays.

HBO is really the big winner, because it will get two prime matchups featuring four of the world’s best pound-for-pound fighters in consecutive months.

The risk is that Mayweather and or Pacquiao could lose. With so much money on the line, it’s a risk worth taking.
 

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