MANILA, Philippines - Manny Pacquiao will make sure that his next fight, against anyone out there, won’t stand in the way of his duties as congressman in the lone district of Sarangani.
Bob Arum, his promoter, is working on a new opponent for Pacquiao for Nov. 13 after Floyd Mayweather Jr. seemed to have closed the door for a fight with the Filipino superstar this year.
It could be either Miguel Cotto or Antonio Margarito in a place that has yet to be determined. What’s quite certain, however, is that Pacquiao will have to train in the Philippines for his next fight.
“He would not come to the Wild Card (in Los Angeles) to train until three weeks before the fight. That was the plan that was relayed to me,” Arum told the press a couple of days ago.
Congress holds its sessions on Mondays and Thursdays, and Pacquiao, the first and only boxer in history ever to hold the position, will have to be there as long as it is needed.
Sometimes, if not most of the times, it means being in the halls of congress the whole day.
Arum said Freddie Roach, Pacquiao’s chief trainer, will have to come over to Manila so Pacquiao could train after he takes off his business suit, and they should find a suitable and convenient place for him to train.
In his previous fights, Pacquiao had tried setting up camp in the Philippines, first in Cebu for the Marco Antonio Barrera fight, and then in Baguio City for the Miguel Cotto fight.
But this should be the longest time he’d train in Metro Manila, probably at the Wild Card Gym in Parañaque, a gym owned by the late Rod Nazario, the boxer’s former business manager, or somewhere else.
“Yes. It is complicated but one thing I know is when he fights, they go out of session for three weeks. So the idea would be that he would train in Manila and Freddie would be over there,” said Arum.
When in the US, Pacquiao trains everyday except Sunday, and normally spars on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. They can change the days where he spars but not the fact that he should train everyday.
That’s one reason why Arum gave Mayweather the deadline last Saturday (in Manila) for him to agree to the terms of the fight, and now that’s also the reason why the Top Rank chief wants a new opponent known as soon as possible.
Last Saturday, Arum said he can seal the deal with either Cotto or Margarito inside 10 days, so Pacquiao can start loosening up before hitting the gym, be part of a major conference and probably a quick press tour, and start promoting the fight.
“We now have to go out and secure an opponent for Manny Pacquiao assuming it won’t be Floyd and we have to mount a campaign and have to get in touch with In-Demand, DirecTV and Dish Networks and get everything in order.
“Time is going by and also we have to start scheduling press conferences because with Manny Pacquiao you are not dealing with the normal fighter. He is over in the Philippines and he has duties as a congressman there. Therefore we are limited as to when we can schedule press conferences in the United States,” Arum said.