ROBERT MORALES on BOXING: Delay could help Mayweather-Pacquiao come to fruition
By Robert Morales, boxing columnist
It was no surprise Floyd Mayweather Jr. on Friday did not go directly to jail. Instead, a Las Vegas judge allowed him to pass go so he can collect a lot more than the $200 you get in Monopoly.
Such is the way celebrities are treated.
Mayweather's lawyer, Richard Wright, on Friday requested Mayweather's 90-day jail sentence for a domestic violence conviction be delayed until June 1 so Mayweather can fulfill a prior obligation to fight May 5 at MGM Grand in Las Vegas. He was slated to begin the term Friday.
According to the Associated Press, Justice of the Peace Melissa Saragosa was informed by Wright that Mayweather's last seven fights in Las Vegas have produced an estimated $1 billion in business to the community and the May 5 fight could provide as much as $100 million to the local economy.
"This is a simple delay because of prior commitments and contracts," Wright said.
Responded Saragosa, "Mr. Mayweather has an obligation to this court. Given the fact that Mr. Mayweather has these obligations, I am going to grant your request."
This at least slightly opens the door for a possible fight between Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao in May as a prelude to Mayweather starting his sentence, assuming he doesn't get out of it again.
Top Rank Inc. chairman Bob Arum, Pacquiao's promoter, already was going to the Philippines next week to speak with Pacquiao about the four names given Pacquiao's trainer, Freddie Roach, regarding Pacquiao's next opponent. They are Timothy Bradley, Lamont Peterson, Juan Manuel Marquez and Miguel Cotto.
Arum now will be talking to Pacquiao about Mayweather. But, as usual, there are some conditions.
"Well, if the question is May 5, no, that is not viable," Arum said Friday. "But the end of May might be viable."
Arum said the end of May would give the cut Pacquiao suffered in his last fight against Marquez, on Nov. 12, more time to heal so he can begin sparring.
"Also because we want the opportunity to get started constructing in Las Vegas a temporary stadium on the old Frontier property," Arum said.
"We could buy three extra weeks we would need to put it up. MGM is a great property, but it's only 16,000 seats. If we have an opportunity for 40,000, that is a big difference."
Arum was asked how terrific it would be to finally get this fight done as it has been a long time coming, complete with previously failed negotiations.
"If you go by what fight do fight fans want to see most, it's this fight," he said. "There is no question about it.
"If we can get it done, that's fine. If we can't, we will do it in November."
Golden Boy Promotions has promoted Mayweather's past few fights.
Golden Boy CEO Richard Schaefer said he does not believe Arum is serious about trying to make Mayweather-Pacquiao for May or any other month.
"My only comment is for those who are still drinking the Top Rank Kool-Aid," Schaefer said. "I'm just tired of Bob Arum's (expletive).
"Arum is full of (expletive). He doesn't want the fight. Next question."
Arum noted during a telephone conversation Team Mayweather on Friday immediately sent out a statement saying it would be making an announcement next week regarding Mayweather's opponent in May. If that is true, it probably won't be Pacquiao because new negotiations haven't even started for that.
Enter Robert "The Ghost" Guerrero. Rumor has it he is being strongly considered as a May 5 opponent for Mayweather. If it's not Pacquiao, this would be a solid second choice. At 29-1-1 with 18 knockouts, Guerrero has compiled a record of 6-0 with four knockouts in championship fights.
Guerrero has won world titles in the featherweight and super featherweight divisions, as well as an interim world title in the lightweight class. At 5 feet 8, he is somewhat tall for those divisions and he said Friday he would have no problem moving up to welterweight.
"If I do get the fight with him, I'm going to beat him," said Guerrero, of Gilroy.
It would be the biggest fight of Guerrero's career and his biggest payday.
"He is the biggest fight for Manny Pacquiao if he were to get that fight," Guerrero said. "No matter who it is, a fight with Floyd Mayweather would be the biggest fight of anybody's career.
"This is where you start setting your legacy as one of the greatest in boxing."
Promoter and WBA say Khan deserves rematch
Richard Schaefer, CEO of Golden Boy Promotions, remains hopeful something of real substance will materialize regarding the Dec. 10 super lightweight title fight between Amir Khan and Lamont Peterson in Peterson's native Washington.
Schaefer said Golden Boy, which promotes Khan, has filed the official appeals. That includes one to the boxing commission in Washington as well as the two governing bodies for whom the titles were contested.
Khan lost his International Boxing Federation and World Boxing Association championship belts that night via split decision. At the root of Golden Boy's beef were the two points Khan lost for pushing, as well as the way the scorecards were handled later. It took too long to read them.
"The IBF is going to hear our argument on Jan. 18, I believe," Schaefer said, "and then we hope that the right decision will be made."
Schaefer is looking for an immediate rematch for Khan. Gilberto Jesus Mendoza, vice president of the WBA, on Friday said in an Associated Press story it is his opinion Khan does deserve a rematch.
The WBA is studying images of an unidentified man Khan is suggesting interfered with the judges and leaning over Michael Welsh, the WBA supervisor that night.
Schaefer told the Associated Press this man was seen celebrating with Peterson after the fight. According to Mendoza, this man reportedly told Welsh he was an IBF official. "... But we have consulted several persons at the IBF and they've also said they don't know who this person is," Mendoza said.
Mendoza said he was waiting to hear back from the commission in Washington to see if it knows the man's identity.
Schaefer said he has been getting the runaround in this matter.
"People are being very evasive in their responses," he said.
When asked which people he was referring to, Schaefer would not say.
"I'm not going to go and point fingers," he said. "We are going through with the appeal and see what happens. We are prepared to take this further, if necessary.
"I'm going to leave it at that. I'm not going to show my all my hand."
Khan won 115-110 on one scorecard, but the other two were 113-112 in favor of Peterson. Were it not for the two point deductions, Khan would have won via unanimous decision.