Retired American boxer Floyd Mayweather Jr. only smiled after hearing the news that his former foe, Filipino boxing star and Senator Manny Pacquiao, is returning to boxing.
Critics see Pacquiao’s comeback fight against Mexican-American champion Jessie Vargas as a “money grab” bout.
The match will take place on November 5, more than a year since they slugged it out and earned millions of dollars.
Mayweather hinted that Pacquiao is fighting again due to his “poor decision-making.”
“It’s your team. It’s all about who you surround yourself with,” said Mayweather, who retired with a perfect 49-0 record, in an interview recorded by Elie Seckbach.
Mayweather said he’s earned much from his fights because he knew how to negotiate and that he was being his own man.
He remembers the first time he talked with Pacquiao on the phone and straight out offered the Filipino $40 million.
“I gave him the option before about fighting him the first time. I think I offered him $40 million but I told him I’d wire him $20 million within 48 hours,” said Mayweather. “At that particular time, he told me he wanted 50-50 and he got off the phone. I think I was set to make probably $75 (million) at that time, somewhere upwards of 75 but it’s all about timing.”
Mayweather claimed that he also knew how to handle his money.
“I took my time, waited, communicated and leading up to the fight always made smart investments. Leading up to the fight - that week, we made something like $30 million cash. And for the Canelo fight too, for those two fights we made $400 million - just for those two fights,” said Mayweather.
“You know I was blessed. I think luck was on my side. I came around in the right time – in the nineties and I built my fan base before all these social media. It wasn’t easy.”
Pacquiao has always insisted that his comeback is not really about the money.
The senator, who is also the head coach of PBA team Mahindra, said that boxing has always been his passion.
"Diyan talaga ako lumaki at hilig ko talaga 'yan. Nami-miss ko 'yung boxing. Pangalawa, karangalan ko na nagbibigay ako ng honor sa ating bansa," said the former eight-division world champion in a previous report.
(I grew up boxing and that’s what I like. I miss boxing. It’s also a privilege to bring honor to our country).
"Kumbaga, 'yan ang passion ko eh," Pacquiao said of boxing. "Parang nalulungkot ako na… minsan, pag lumalaban ka sa taas ng ring, winawagayway mo ang bandila ng Pilipinas, tapos lahat ng tao naka-suporta sa 'yo, iba 'yung pakiramdam."
(That’s my passion. I sometimes feel sad or miss being up in the ring, waving the Philippine flag, then all your countrymen support you… It warms the heart.)