MANILA, Philippines - Nonito Donaire Jr. thinks that his long-awaited matchup with Jorge Arce isn't happening because the Mexican camp is asking for a lot of money.
"He's not afraid. He's a veteran. Definitely, it's the money," the reigning WBO super-bantamweight champion told yesterday’s PSA Forum at Shakey’s Malate.
Donaire said he was supposed to fight the stone-faced Mexican when he was still at 112 lb, 115 lb and 118 lb, and now that he'’s the champion at 122 lb.
"Definitely our fight is not pushing through because they're demanding a lot of money. Well, it's not my decision because I already have a minimum fee. I have a set price.
"But they want more. For them I'm the biggest money out there," said Donaire, who earned at least $750,000 for the Nishioka fight, and should get much more for his next one.
Donaire Jr. is giving his promoter, Bob Arum of Top Rank, two weeks to set the stage for an explosive Dec. 15 matchup with Arce.
Otherwise, he'll just sit it out the rest of the year.
"If they don’t give us a definite answer in two weeks I will go the route of resting," said Donaire, who had planned to rest until talks about the Arce fight came up anew.
It was even reported a couple of days ago that Arum is all set to announce the fight.
But Donaire said there’s nothing concrete. He said he wants it known in two weeks if the Arce fight is on because he needs to prepare himself, set up camp and get the sparring partners.
"For now nothing is sure. I haven't seen any contract. It's been all talk. I haven't talked to Bob as to when, who and where it’s going to be," he said.
The sensational Filipino champion came to the forum with his wife Rachel. They both sounded excited with the Arce fight which should be his first pay-per-view outing.
"It's being talked about. I'm excited for it. But for now if it doesn’t happen, it's okay. I'm going to rest," said Donaire, who suffered a deep cut on his left knuckle during the Nishioka fight.
Donaire is now the biggest star in the 122 lb division, and because of this Arce is asking for a lot of money.
Arce said he's only asking for what he feels "the fight is worth."
There are other big fights to be made for Donaire, including Abner Mares, Guillermo Rigondaeux or Anselmo Moreno.
But December is only for Arce.
Donaire said he's willing to take on Arce in Mexico City, even if he feels he will be at a "disadvantage" entering the lion's den.
"Maybe if it's in Mexico he might not ask for a lot of money," he said.