Manny Pacquiao: 'I Have Agreed to the 14-Day Limit'
NEW YORK --Seven-division champion and WBO welterweight (147 pounds) king Manny Pacquiao has voiced his agreement to a drug testing schedule that he believes will satisfy the demands required for a potential megabout with Floyd Mayweather, but it is unclear whether that, in itself, is what the unbeaten welterweight's side really wants.
Negotiations for a proposed megabout between Pacquiao (51-3-2, 38 knockouts) and Mayweather (41-0, 25 KOs) are resumed after having reached an impasse in January for a proposed March 13 bout. The conflict arose over whether or not each fighter would be subjected to Olympic style random drug testing of blood and urine.
A gag order has been in place for the negotiations, and neither side is speaking publicly. But Mayweather's camp had been insistent upon the notion of completely random testing before facing Pacquiao, who countered that he believes that drawing blood too close to the bout would weaken him.
Pacquiao initially refused to have blood drawn closer than within 24 days of a fight, but the Filipino star has since softened his stance.
On Friday night at the Boxing Writers' Association of America Awards Banquet, following his acceptance of his third straight Fighter of the Year honors and first Fighter of the Decade award, Pacquiao was asked about the prospect of facing Mayweather.
"I'm very much willing and excited to train for that fight. I'm also ready to assume my congressional seat," Pacquiao told FanHouse and The GMA news out of his native Manila, Philippines. "Floyd has no reason to refuse to fight any more because I have agreed to the 14-day limit within which they can draw blood from me."
Meanwhile, Pacquiao's promoter, Bob Arum, continues to work with Golden Boy Promotions on perhaps the most highly anticipated fight in decades between Pacquiao and Mayweather.
Mayweather's camp has insisted on random testing of blood and urine all the way up to and beyond the fight, including training sessions.