After two years of inactivity and countless botched negotiations, Filipino ring icon Manny Pacquiao will be fighting ex-world titleholder Mikey Garcia either in July or August in Dubai, United Arab Emirates after agreeing with his management group Paradigm Sports Management.
Pacquiao’s business manager Arnold Vegafria and the senator’s close associate Jayke Joson, who both represent PSM, confirmed that the eight-division world champion will be returning for the first time since winning by a split decision over Keith Thurman on July 20, 2019 in Las Vegas, Nevada.
“The fight is going to happen 100 percent and it’s absolutely on, definitely,” said Vegafria, adding that the fight details and the final date will soon be announced. “It is going to be a big fight. We have been working for this project since last year with Paradigm. Senator Pacquiao agreed to sign the contract,” Vegafria added.
Pacquiao’s legal adviser Atty. Brando Viernesto reviewed the contract, saying it’s a very lucrative deal, but didn’t divulge other details due to confidentiality.
Joson, who is assisting Pacquiao since day 1 in helping a lot of people around the archipelago particularly COVID-19 victims, expects the welterweight warrior to prepare seriously against the 33-year-old Garcia (40-1 win-loss record with 30 knockouts).
Pacquiao, 42, has started his training camp in General Santos City under chief trainer Buboy Fernandez and assistant coach Nonoy Neri two weeks ago, but stopped for a few days because of his hectic schedule.
He’ll be resuming his training next week.
Vegafria added that the original proposal for Pacquiao to have an ultimate showdown with Ultimate Fighting Championship superstar Conor McGregor remains on the table after his fight with Garcia.
Meanwhile, the reported Pacquiao-Terence Crawford showdown on June 5 also in the United Arab Emirates didn’t materialize.