Will U.S. boxing fans ever see Manny Pacquiao fight on their soil again?
From the way Top Rank boss Bob Arum sounded on a recent conference call, the States may not be graced by Pacquiao’s presence anytime soon.
Pacquiao’s last 14 bouts have been in the United States, most of them in Las Vegas. He fought Joshua Clottey and Antonio Margarito at Cowboy Stadium and Jorge Solis at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas. His last fight outside of the United States was against Oscar Larios in the Philippines in 2006.
Pacquiao (54-5-2) is set to take on Brandon Rios (31-1-1) at the Cotai Arena, Venetian Resort on Nov. 23 in Macau, S.A.R., China.
“You have to understand - stop being so U.S. centric. The world has changed,” said Arum. “There are revenue sources that are huge outside of the United States. And it’s not only Macau. Look what happened in Russia where somebody paid $23 million for a heavyweight match because they knew in Russia they could generate huge amounts of money from sponsorships and tickets.”
Arum isn’t the only American promoter who realizes this. Don King has taken his act outside of the continental U.S. in recent years.
“This is no longer a U.S. ballgame,” continued Arum. “For example, if Manny were to fight [Juan Manuel] Márquez, the optimum amount of money to be generated could be in Mexico rather than in the United States.”
Arum isn’t against having Pacquiao fight in America again, but the financial circumstances have to work in the Filipino Congressman’s favor for that to happen anytime soon.
“Manny has nothing against fighting in the United States," Arum said. "As long as it makes sense. The one thing we had going for us, you have to remember, is the tremendous savings, as far as Manny Pacquiao is concerned, is he doesn’t have to pay U.S. taxes at 39.6 percent, so any arithmetic that we did, how well we would do or how well we wouldn’t do, had to take into account the enormous tax savings.
"As far as Brandon Rios is concerned, we are American citizens and we have to pay taxes on our share of the money. For Manny it makes an enormous difference.”