Mayweather foe still unnamed
MANILA, Philippines – American trainer Freddie Roach clarified that the fight featuring his ward, Manny Pacquiao, and Ghanaian Joshua Clottey on March 13 will not have a catchweight.
“It will be at 147. There’s no catchweight,” Roach told FightHype.com. A catchweight describes a weight limit for a fight that does not fall in traditional limits for weight divisions.
“He’ll come into this fight like 144-145 and he’ll go into the ring at 148 or 149 at most and that’s his best fighting weight,” Roach said.
The Trainer of the Year recipient stated that Pacquiao is comfortable fighting at 147 lbs.
“Making 135 was a bit of a struggle, making 140, we can make 140 with ease, but he likes the extra strength, he likes eating the day of the weigh-in,” added Roach.
“When Manny’s eating the day of the weigh-in and gets to eat twice before the weigh-in, he’s happy, and that’s when he performs at his best, when he’s smiling and in a good mood. He’s not in an angry mood because he’s starving himself.”
Pacquiao, the only seven-division world champion, is set to face former International Boxing Federation (IBF) welterweight champion Clottey at the Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas.
The Filipino boxing superstar will defend the World Boxing Organization (WBO) welterweight title which he won after beating Puerto Rican Miguel Cotto in November.
The pound-for-pound king was supposed to face undefeated American fighter Floyd Mayweather, Jr., but negotiations for the fight crumbled due to their disagreement on the drug testing procedure.
Asked by BoxingTalk.com if Team Clottey will ask for additional drug testing on Pacquiao, Clottey’s manager Vincent Scolpino said, “Whatever rules apply in the state are what we will abide by.”
“Hopefully, everybody will be professional in the situation and we won't have anything to worry about,” he added.
The Pacquiao vs Mayweather bout was touted to be a blockbuster fight. When fight talks began to be in limbo, former IBF light welterweight champion Paul “Paulie” Malignaggi and World Boxing Association (WBA) super welterweight champion Yuri Foreman were named as possible foes.
Team Pacquiao, however, chose Clottey.
“It's a great opportunity for Josh against the best fighter in the world and he's going to do what he has to do,” noted Scolpino.
He went on to say about Pacquiao: “He's one of the best fighters ever. He throws his hands and that's all you could ask for from a guy. I have a tremendous amount of respect for him.”
Meanwhile, Mayweather will carry on with his March 13 fight at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada but his opponent is still unknown.
According to reports, Malignaggi, Kermit Cintron, Nate Campbell, Timothy Bradley and Matthew Hatton are possible foes for Mayweather.
Hatton, the younger brother of British prized fighter Ricky Hatton, has been removed from the list.
“There is absolutely no truth to the rumors about Matthew Hatton… I can't tell you for sure who Floyd will fight, but I can tell you it won't be Hatton,” Golden Boy Promotions CEO Richard Schaefer told The Sun.
Schaefer also said that he expects to make an announcement in the coming days.
“It wasn't Floyd who walked away from the Pacquiao fight. There is nothing I can really say about it,” he remarked. “It's not good for Pacquiao to go on that date, which we had for a long time… It's not good for boxing that Pacquiao and Mayweather are not fighting each other.” – with reports from Ben Thompson of FightHype.com, Stephen Edwards of BoxingTalk.com, and Gavin Glicksman of The Sun.co.uk